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MP3 Stuart Martz - The Hungry Streets Of Home

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MP3 Stuart Martz - The H
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Third album from OC's premiere Celtic rocker is his best and most consistent so far. Patrick Thomas -- OC Metro Magazine

11 MP3 Songs
FOLK: Power-folk, WORLD: Celtic

Stuart Martz - The Hungry Streets of Home Release 7/16/06, TW 14346 02663

Stuart Martzâs newest album âThe Hungry Streets of Homeâ slams onto the Celtic Rock scene with no apologies, while consistently embracing his traditional roots. Martzâs electro-celtic power trio is what might have happened had classic power trios like Cream or ZZ Top had roots in west Clare rather than rock ân roll. His guitar style rolls together the stars he listened to growing up -- Martin Carthy, Dick Gaughan, Richard Thompson, and Paul Brady, even infusing tinges of Mark Knopfler, while his original songs cast him as a leading songwriter in both the traditional folk and rock genres with a literary dexterity not often seen. With the title track âThe Hungry Streets of Homeâ, Martz has pinpointed our deepest fears of unrealized dreams and ârum-rottenâ smiles behind a fearful past. The theme of âhomeâ runs throughout this record. By the end of the cautionary tale âTwisted Windâ youâll already be singing the chorus, but to which home do you return? Or should you return at all?

As a traditional musician, Martz leads off the album playing in an electric Martin Carthy style on âBarrack Streetâ, a rollicking tale of a sailor just back from three years at sea. In the ballad âBlack is the Colorâ, Martz twangs out a lead on his strat making you wish that you, too, had lived across the street from The Replacementsâ original guitar player on Aldrich Avenue. âThe Newry Highwaymanâ explodes off Martzâs fingers and lips with a controlled punch to the gut reminiscent of Thompson. As with his previous album, the internationally acclaimed âThreesome Reelâ, Martz weaves traditional melodies and lyrics with unexpected delays, syncopations, and undertones that take you into the murkier side of the Celtic world. He resurrects âThe Rolling Hills of the Borderâ as a song accepting death in order to embrace life, beginning with a plaintive invitation by guest piper, Boholaâs Pat Broaders. Martzâs clear vocals and singular Brady-esque guitar picking create a deep longing for a sense of place.

Lest you get too complacent wallowing in the darker bogs, Martz jolts you back to life with âFour Drunken Maidensâ (who refuse to leave home), showcasing his exceptional traditional fiddle as well as his penchant for rocking it up with effects like distortion to surprise and delight. The instrumentals are truly a return to tradition, as Martzâs rhythm section rocks on fiddle tunes âThe Yo & Ho Reelâ, âJohnnyâs Wedding/The Girl That Broke My Heartâ, and âKillarney Boys of Pleasure/Collierâs Reelâ. Thereâs just enough fiddle here to make you want more.

As a final breath, Martzâs version of âDanny Boyâ adds an emphatic exclamation point to the end of the album. This punked-up, Irish lightening bolt will capture the hearts of generations, young and old, reminding them there will always be a home to go to, albeit one that might have a heavy backbeat.

The true force of Stuartâs work is his storytelling. He uses his voice and instrumental arrangements to plait, within each song and from song to song, an album that leaves you hungry for the next installment.


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