“The Hottest Group in the Celtic Realm” – The Boston Globe
No 1 in the itunes world music chart and No5 on the US Billboard world music charts for 6 weeks in a row!! Altan are back better than ever, the album has hit the top of the charts and the tours are bigger than ever with 6 weeks touring in the US, a month in the UK, 3 weeks in Germany, 2 weeks in Japan.
Altan have always approached their music and arrangements with integrity and openness and have strived to share their culture to new expanding audiences worldwide. On this new recording, “The Widening Gyre” their spiral of music expands, envelopes and includes friends and music that they have met on the road over their 30 years of touring professionally. For this recording, during the summer of 2014, Altan went to the hub of country music, Nashville in Tennessee. There, they set up camp in Compass Records own studios and co-produced this album with their friend Garry West of Compass Records and engineer Sean Sullivan. They wanted to try a new, fresh approach to
recording and reflect how they have widened their musical horizons over their career and with the help of Garry produced “The Widening Gyre”, the title being a reference from W.B. Yeat’s poem ‘The Second Coming’.
ALTAN have recorded with many great artists for this album, including:
Mary Chapin Carpenter, Tim O’Brien, Alison Brown, Darol Anger, Jerry Douglas, Jim Higgins. Bruce Molsky, Tod Phillips, Natalie Haas, Garry West, Julee Glaub Weems, Kenny Malone, Mike McGoldrick, Eddi Reader,and Stuart Duncan.
Altan have been long established as the best and foremost traditional Irish band to come out of Ireland. This was recognised on November 7, 2006, when the Irish Government through An Post (The Irish Postal Body),honoured Altan by issuing a postal stamp featuring the band. This award showed Altan’s immense impact on recent Irish culture at home and abroad and the growing popularity of Irish traditional music generally. With their exquisitely produced award-winning recordings,their ground breaking ‘Island Angel’ recording going to no.2 in the Billboard World Music Charts in 1993, ranging dynamically from the most sensitive and touching ancient ballads all the way to the energetic foot-tapping reels and jigs, and their heart warming engaging live performances, Altan have moved audiances from Donegal all the way to Tokyo, to Sydney,Seattle and beyond. Altan’s music is steeped in the rich and colourful heritage of County Donegal in the North West of Ireland.