Scots trad-rock band Mànran have releasedf a live version of Òran Na Cloiche to coincide with the 25th anniversary year of HebCelt Festival. The festival favourite was recorded live at last year’s HebCelt and the single has all the energy and excitement you might expect, bringing the euphoria of the lively crowd to life.
Recorded at the infamous Stornoway festival last year, Òran Na Cloiche translates to English as ‘The Song of the Stone’. The upbeat song, which is a firm festival favourite, has been released to mark the milestone 25th anniversary of HebCelt, which was going virtual this year. Originally released on Mànran’s self-titled album in 2011, the original track racked up more than 1.2 million streams on Spotify alone and never fails to get festival crowds dancing. The live version, which was recorded as part of Mànran’s entire 2019 HebCelt set, has all the energy and excitement you might expect, bringing the euphoria of the lively HebCelt crowd to life for listeners.
Gary Innes of Mànran said: “So much of 2020 has been a disaster for all music events and concerts and as musicians we’re heartbroken not to be on the road at this time of year performing at summer festivals and concerts at home and abroad. The Heb Celt Festival is always one of our favourite gigs to play and a highlight of the four summers when we’ve taken to their stage across Mànran’s 10 years.”
“Last year we recorded our full show at the festival and we thought it would be nice to release a live track from it, especially over what should have been a milestone 25th anniversary event weekend for them. It’s so great to hear the crowd cheering and singing along in this recording, we’re all really missing performing and seeing the familiar, friendly faces around the festival circuit - roll on 2021 and welcoming back all of the great summer music events!”
Caroline Maclennan, HebCelt festival director, said: “We are delighted to be involved with Mànran's latest release, the atmosphere they generate at festivals is electric and the track is a great reflection of a superb set at HebCelt last year.”
Mànran formed in 2011 and it didn’t take them long to release a multi-award-winning debut album. They remain the only group in the 21st century to break the UK top 40 with a song in the Gaelic language - their debut single Latha Math reached number 29. The subsequent years brought with them continued success with the band establishing their characteristic sound and distinctive approach to musical arrangement.
Variously tagged as “folk-rock”, “trad-rock”, “Celtic-rock” and even “grown-up folk-rock”, Mànran’s music has always defied easy labelling due to the eclectic mix of influences on the band. With a central ethos built around the band’s traditional Celtic roots, fiery tunes from fiddle, accordion, flute, Uilleann and Highland bagpipes bind powerfully to a rhythm section awash with elements of funk, jazz and rock to create some of the most innovative and uplifting instrumental music around.
Coupled with songs in both Gaelic and English that undergo the same musical mixology, it’s easy to understand why Mànran are in such high demand as a live act. With music ranging from the explosive to the poignant and, at all times, a palpable connection to their audience, Mànran thrive on live performances and spend most of the year touring and bringing their music to new parts of the World. So far, this has taken the band all over Europe, the USA and Asia as well as Australia (where the band was awarded the accolade “International Artist of the Year” at the Australian Celtic Music Awards).
The multi-award winning Hebridean Celtic Festival (HebCelt) has been a key feature in the cultural landscape of the Outer Hebrides since 1996. This internationally renowned event has a unique setting in the Scottish Hebridean island of Lewis, the heartland of the Gaelic language and culture. HebCelt passionately protects and promotes its heritage, including the vibrant Gaelic and traditional music that is both part of its history and its contemporary life. It mixes the best local talent with leading Scottish, UK and world artists and brings together household names and emerging talent to provide a feast of music to appeal to all ages. The result is a diverse blend of sights and sounds that is true to Celtic traditions but also welcoming to new ideas and influences.
Photo Credits: (1) Hebridean Celtic Festival, (2) Mànran (unknown/website).