Fullset at Whelans – Review and Photos

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It was a night of Jigs, Reels, Marches and Slides upstairs in Whelan’s last night, July 17th, where we saw multi award winning Irish Traditional Music Band FullSet. The winners of the RTÉ/RAAP Breakthrough Annual Music Bursary Award in 2011 and the New Group of the Year in the Live Ireland Music Awards in 2012, play one final Irish date in Limerick on Friday 19th before heading on a North American Tour.

Celebrating their new album “Notes After Dark”, the group hailing from all over Ireland, played in sauna-like conditions to a packed room in Dublin.

It’s the first time in several years I had been to a traditional Irish music session and it really didn’t disappoint.

Support on the night came from Caroline Keane (Limerick) on Concertina and Tom Delany (Clare) on Uilleann Pipes. A nervous laughter from both at the start of the night, but there was no nervousness or hesitation in their playing. Unlike most other gigs, this support act had the place packed. The duo was the perfect warm up for what was to come.

FullSet came to the stage and kicked off the night with a track from their new album ‘Up and about’. At this point the place looked uncomfortably packed at the back, with people sitting on the floor up the front. Lead man and fiddler Michael Harrisson displaying some amazing fiddle plucking skills throughout the night. The place was hopping with “woos” and “yeos” to songs like ‘The Glen Road to Carrick’ and a set of jigs called ‘The Green Fields of Woodford’ and calmed down to the lovely voice of Teresa Horgan to ballads like ‘Roseville Fair’ and beautiful rendition of Dick Gaughan’s ‘Both Sides of the Tweed’.

A mixture of young and old in the crowd and such a great turnout for a seisiún traidisiúnta. Towards the end of the night, bodhrán and glockenspiel player Eamonn Moloney showed us his dancing skills which got the crowd riled for more. Even after the last song the crowd begged for more and of course the sextet obliged. They could have played all night!

Overall an intense, enjoyable, and very warm gig in Whelan’s. You can find out more about FullSet at their official website where you can also buy their new album ‘Notes After Dark’.

Review by Pat Byrne

Photos by Tudor Marian


Lucy Ivan

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