Shilelagh Law | Good Intentions

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United States - New York

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World: Celtic Folk: Traditional Folk Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Good Intentions

by Shilelagh Law

Moments of exuberance, compellingly-presented history, the twins of love and loss, Shilelagh Law segues from point to point like an artist with a beer-soaked paintbrush.
Genre: World: Celtic
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Good Intentions
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3:16 $0.99
2. Broad Black Brimmer
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3:23 $0.99
3. Nothing Gold Can Stay
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4:41 $0.99
4. Finnegan's Wake
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1:50 $0.99
5. Here We Go
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3:39 $0.99
6. Meet Me on McLean
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4:00 $0.99
7. Weariness Falls Away
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3:24 $0.99
8. Boys of '98
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2:49 $0.99
9. Green Fields of France
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6:41 $0.99
10. Songs to Sing
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3:29 $0.99
11. When New York was Irish
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3:37 $0.99
12. Wild Mountain Thyme
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4:34 $0.99
13. Whiskey You're the Devil
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2:07 $0.99
14. Jug of Punch
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3:02 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
Like a gifted modern painter with a beer-soaked brush, New York's Shilelagh Law communicates the Irish-American experience with unflinching reality and amazing color. 'Good Intentions,' their third album, abounds with the energy, insight, and humor that inevitably emerge from the far corner of the bar at 4 a.m.
'Good Intentions' showcases a more mature and polished version of Shilelagh Law. "It was our goal to show some growth and really put our personal stamp on Irish music with this effort," says Richard Popovic, lead singer and guitarist. "We had more confidence in ourselves as musicians and a better sense of direction going into the studio this time around. We wanted to feature our songwriting and concentrate on achieving the sound we knew we were capable of producing. The result is a tight, deliberate collection of songs we are very proud of."
The album's first cut, the title track 'Good Intentions,' tears out of the gate, perfectly capturing the feel of the band while setting the tone for the rest of the album. It follows the story of a well-meaning soul from his earliest days of Catholic school to his defiant though lonely end. He is a character we are all familiar with: well meaning, likeable, but ultimately flawed, a loveable rogue who makes an excellent drinking partner but whom we would never allow to date our sister. The story is spun over the Law's trademark no-holds-barred style and is highlighted throughout by some dazzling fiddle work by Denis McCarthy.
Six more original songs stand out as the true stars of this solid release. Terence Brennan (percussion, vocals) contributes 'Boys of '98', a historical rebel song in the vein of the Wolfetones that easily holds its own against the best of this genre, and 'Here We Go,' a modern day anthem that pays tribute to Brennan's roots in hardcore music. Popovic's 'Weariness Falls Away' is a spare and haunting love song, while his 'Songs to Sing' is a revealing look into what it is really is like to be in a working pub band. Popovic and Denis McCarthy (fiddle, tin whistle, piano) collaborated on 'Nothing Gold Can Stay,' a pretty ballad that wistfully looks back upon the pleasures of youth while celebrating the present. McCarthy also penned 'Meet Me on McLean,' a snappy tribute to an avenue in Yonkers famous for it's abundance of pubs and Irish culture.
Aside from their own compositions, there are some traditional standards that are sure to bring a smile and raise a few eyebrows. Their treatment of 'Broad Black Brimmer' breathes new life into an old tune, and their reworked version of Terence Winch's classic 'When NY was Irish' is inspired, to say the least. The Law proves they can bring it down a notch with a melodic 'Wild Mountain Thyme,' and their faithful rendition of 'Green Fields of France' is stirring, especially in these troubled times. Fans who revel in their music served up fast and faster will certainly get into 'Finnegan's Wake' and 'Whiskey You're the Devil,' and I challenge you not to smile while listening to 'Jug of Punch.' A nod to the classic recordings of The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem, the whole band steps to the microphone for this one. Everyone takes a lead verse, including Steve Gardner (bass), a man more accustomed to the shadows. The song ends this album on a perfect note. With everyone pitching in, the sense of true camaraderie and humor that makes this band special really shines through.
Musically, there is a lot to be said for Shilelagh Law and this album in particular. Instead of turning out a formulaic album that echoed their previous two, they branch out into different styles, rhythms and instruments, and it pays off. Kevin McCarthy (accordion) lends a depth and texture to the tracks that makes you miss him when he sits one out. The bodhran, a notoriously difficult instrument to record, comes through crisply and allows Brennan to finally receive the prominence that players of his caliber deserve. Popovic's guitar is clear and warm, Gardner's acoustic bass lends a welcome smoothness, and McCarthy's fiddle and flute work will make you wonder if there was a symphony sitting in. Touches of piano and banjo are also a nice surprise. But the true treat is the harmonies. These guys can really sing, a fact that is easily lost in the often rambunctious sing-a-longs. Beautiful two and three part harmonies are scattered throughout the recording like flowers after a spring rain-refreshing, alive, and lovely to behold.
'Good Intentions' is a must-have for any fan of the band and is sure to earn them plenty of more fans along the way. Fourteen songs that perfectly capture the Irish-American experience all wrapped up in a handsome and tasteful jacket--this disc is a real treat.


to write a review

A Seattle Fan

1st one was good, 2nd was great, 3rd one is fantastic
I absolutley love this cd. I enjoy the origional music mixed with the traditional songs as well...I love the pure tones of the vocals, Denis's fiddle playing is amazing and I love that it sounds like the guys are truely enjoying themselves creating this wonderful music.I was turned on to "S.Law" by a friend and can not thank him enough for doing so. Thank you for the music...Great cd...


Great CD! The song "good intentions" helped me realize that I am not alone in this world!

#1 fan

this cd is awesome -- shilelagh law is a great band to see live --- i've turned so many people on to them. definitely get out to see them -- they never disappoint. good intentions and songs to sing are my favorites ... they're awesome. definitely get this cd ... and then see them live!


What can I say that hasn't been said?
This is the third copy of Good Intentions I've bought, I keep loaning it to friends and never getting it back! It's a great CD and I can't wait for the newest one due out soon!


These guys sing all the songs I hear echo out of the bottom of a pint glass.


I purchased all 3 CD's, and I was very happy with them all! What great Irish music!! Keep up the good work, looking forward to seeing you live soon! Thanks again!

B Farley

Best Irish you haven't heard
I have three of Laws albums and am not disappointed in any of them. This is a great celtic cd by true musicians. The slow songs are heartfelt and the fast songs make you want to sing & dance... and in true Irish tradition, they all sound great with a pint.


the best irish music ever
i bought all three cd's from shilelagh law! heartfelt,honest, pure irish music! their music makes you feel at home:) i cant say enough about the music because i'll be here all day:)good intentions is my favorite! irish pride - irish music at its best!!!! meet me on mclean and good intentions will make you laugh, cry and to see them in person! awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Getting Better with age
They might not be the most handsome bunch of guys I've ever seen but they are the most talented and fun-loving Irish Band I've ever heard. I have been a fan of these boys since their humble beginnings when the lead singer had dreadlocks, they had a girl fiddling for them and they only knew 4 songs that thay played over and over again for hours on end. Now they're out with their 3rd album and it's FANTASTIC!!!!!!Songs to Sing is my favorite but the whole cd rocks. Alot more originals on this one. A far cry from those four tunes they used to butcher way back when. These guys have come a loooong way, baby. If you are ever in the NYC are and are a fan of Irish Music then this is the band to see. Period! Nobody plays a show better than Shilelagh Law.

Pete, UK

Well done lads! You've outdone yourselves again...! I'm the only person I know over this side of the pond who knows who you are... but fear not I'm spreading the word when I can! Top fare again on the new CD, excellent blend of re-jigged trad numbers and unique comptemporary stuff!
I just hope you can keep the tunes coming....!
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