Shona Kipling
& Damien O'Kane,
Pure Chance
(Conspiracy, 2003)

Shona Kipling is English with Irish roots and Damien O'Kane is Irish. Together they make music that crosses borders. The 10 tracks on offer here move through reels, jigs and waltzes with an ease and professionalism that belies the young age of the artists.

The track "Glenda Lough" is a joy to listen to and takes on extra poignancy when we realize from the notes that it was written by Shona for a lady named Glenda, who she tells us was named after the Irish location. She moves from this into what she informs us is the only composition of Kerry box player John Brosnan, written when he was 14.

The banjo comes to the fore on the inventively named "Banjo Solo" with Damien giving us two of his own compositions and "Tartar Frigate" by Matt Seattle. They include one vocal track, a beautiful version of "Lakes of Ponchartrain." Not to be outdone, Shona gives us "Accordion Solo" to balance that banjo track.

This is an album to delight any lover of good instrumental music.

- Rambles
written by Nicky Rossiter
published 11 December 2004