A band that has made a name for itself since 1992 by updating the Celtic and, more specifically, Cape Breton tradition, Great Big Sea has long mixed poppy original tunes with traditionals goosed up to fit a more modern aesthetic. On the band's eighth album, The Hard And The Easy
, the Canadians focus wholly on traditional Newfoundland folk tunes of all shapes and colors. All the music is acoustic and most (surprise!) have a seafaring theme to them. These are tunes that band-members grew up playing at home with family and friends, and there is no pretension or airs. The band¹s sense of humor comes through on gems like country-ish "Concerning Charlie Horse" and "The Mermaid," while "Graceful & Charming" is a sentimental ballad. The Breton tradition comes through strongest on "Harbour Le Cou" and "Tishialuk Girls Set." Adding its musicianship and excellent vocals to the Celtic continuum, Great Big Sea has come up with one for and of the ages. --Tad Hendrickson
After almost thirteen years together, Great Big Sea is releasing a new kind of album, all-acoustic CD featuring traditional and local songs of Newfoundland. Includes a special 45-minute bonus DVD featuring an informal session with Great Big Sea, complete with reflections, laughs, false starts, and stripped-down versions of all the songs from The Hard and the Easy. Zoe. 2005.