Album Review: The High kings- Decade: Best Of The High Kings

The High Kings Decade
Release Date: November 3, 2017
Run Time: 1:15:07
Label: Celtic Collections
Track Listing:
1 The Rocky Road To Dublin
2 Spancil Hill
3 The Fields Of Athenry
4 The Rising Of The Moon
5 Hand Me Down My Bible
6 Rare Auld Times
7 Four Green Fields
8 The Lonesome Boatman
9 Homeland
10 Marie’s Wedding
11 The Green Fields Of France
12 The Black Velvet Band
13 Irish Pub Song
14 Red Is The Rose
15 Grace
16 Friends For Life
17 The Town I Loved So Well
18 The Parting Glass

The High Kings kickstarted their career serendipitously, as they were featured on a popular PBS broadcast dedicated to Irish music. The group immediately managed to charm their audience with compelling vocal harmonies and beautiful song arrangements that stay true to the traditional values and aesthetics of Celtic Folk, while showcasing a clean and modern approach to production.

“Decade: The Best of the High Kings” is a fascinating retrospective on the band, looking back on a decade of exciting releases and stunning performances across the world. The foursome, consisting of Finbarr Clancy, Brian Dunphy, Darren Holden and Martin Furey, set out to create an intricate sound that highlights their chemistry as performers and as people.

These talented musicians are able to bounce off each other’s creativity and vibrant verve with their impressive skills and emotional response to the material they bring to the audience. This collection of recordings includes some brand new tracks, as well as a selection of the band’s renditions of stunning classics the likes of “Rocky Road to Dublin” or “Spancil Hill,” just to mention a few.

The 18 songs featured on this release offer a truly broad range of textures and sonic dimensions – from the textural and atmospheric vibes of “The Lonesome Boatman,” to the joyful stomp of “Irish Pub Song.” This track is the perfect example of how The High Kings use engaging group vocal arrangements to add excitement and energy to their records. The band’s music is deeply tied to the genre’s traditional roots, yet it offers a refreshing modern approach to the production aesthetics and song arrangements.

The Black Velvet Band” stands out as one of my favorite tracks on the record – I love how The High Kings are able to blend in classic vocal melodies with beautiful drones and melodic swells that add a lush ambiance to the recordings.

Ultimately, “Decade: The Best of the High Kings” is a nice retrospective that will certainly appeal to the fans of the band. However, it could also be an amazing introduction to new listeners, with a smorgasbord of tunes covering ten years of music from this talented quartet.

Rocky Road To Dublin

Final Score



Along with some new tracks, Decade: The Best of the High Kings, showcases some of the bands incredible work over the past 10 years. We feel the fans are absolutely going to love this collection, and it is essential for new listeners of traditional Irish folk.

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