One of my favorite folk bands just came out with a new album this month. For the uninitiated, Flook is an Anglo-Irish folk band comprised of members Sarah Allen, Brian Finnegan, Ed Boyd, and John Joe Kelley. Their music is predominately instrumental, featuring intricate and often very fast tunes played on flute and whistle. My wife refers to them as the “tootey-fluteys” whenever I play one of their albums in the car or around the house. I discovered Flook back in late 2006, about a year after their last album was released, and I’ve enjoyed all of their music ever since. Since Flook disbanded in 2008, I didn’t expect any new music in the future, even though there were rumors of the members getting back together to play a few concerts. You can imagine my surprise last weekend when I discovered their new full-length album, Ancora, while looking through new releases in the “For You” section of iTunes.
Ancora follows the classic Flook style musically, with flute and whistle solos accompanied by guitar and bodhrán. I’ve only noticed few unique instrument additions, such as the steel drum on the third track, Companion Star / The Coral Castle. That tune is currently my favorite from the album. Although not as unique as the trombones featured on Rubai, I thought it was tastefully done. The opening track features a classic Flook musical component: Sarah Allen’s rhythmic flute playing providing a foundation for the clear whistle melody from Brian Finnegan. Other tracks, such as Ellie Goes West, pivot from the usual rhythmic and fast-paced elements to downtempo melodies accompanied by cello and violin. I personally like the addition of a few slower songs and I’m glad the band still has all its usual energy.
If you like folk music, definitely check out this new album from Flook. Highly recommended!