In part because of his being outspoken about traditional music and so-called innovation, MacMahon has become quite an icon whose role as a spokesperson may have overshadowed his abilities as a musician. This excellent CD, MacMahon's second solo album only, should go a long way to help remind people of the latter. A retrospective in some ways, the album combines newly recorded tracks with archival recordings, like the duet with Joe Cooley recorded just before his death in 1972. Other musicians featured include Seamus Connolly (fiddle), James Kelly (fiddle), Barney McKenna (banjo), and Peadar Mercier (bodhran). MacMahon's reputation as an air player comes through vividly here, as he plays no less that four (plus a Breton song air), each more thrilling than the other.

Rating: ****

Price: $18.99                    
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