Hats off again to John Bowles of Paddy Rock Radio for pulling together another fine comp. I’m always amazed how John will always manage to find 2 or 3 really great bands that I’ve never heard – Meisce, The Sandcarvers and The Vandon Arms being the new standouts to me. Of course there are also lots of bands that are old friends of Shite’n’Onions here – Blaggards. Sharky Doyles, The Killigans and many more. 15 great tacks in all. Check it out, I think you’ll be finding new friends as well and getting reacquainted with some old ones.
From Southeastern Wisconsin the Sandcarvers perform classic-styled rock infused with Celtic adornments. Much like Wolfstone, Brother and perhaps Tempest on a bad day, the Sandcarvers are clearly a rock band injected with subtle bodhran, recorder and guitar accents to suggest the Celtic-rock designation. They do provide interesting takes on traditional pieces “Drowsy Maggie” and “Danny Boy.” The latter begins in expected syrupy fashion but quickly morphs into an upbeat fresh take on that infinitely overdone folksong. The best original piece is “Old Man” which begins with a didgeridoo introduction by Hamish (of the band Brother) and is accompanied by an infectious recorder refrain. The Sandcarvers are a decent rock band but if they want to make a greater impact on the sub-genre known as Celtic-rock they’d be wise to add another instrumentalist like a fiddler or accordionist and do away with the electronically reproduced bagpipe and harp sound.
Review By Dave Sleger