On its new full-length, Dark Island, Villages marries metaphor to roots on 11 tracks that offer an experience meant to echo a visit to Cape Breton itself: Otherworldly, euphoric, sobering, celebratory, and reverent.
Nature is, aptly, a dominant theme on Dark Island, befitting men who grew up in a place wild and beautiful: fields, waves, trees, rivers, and rocks figure prominently throughout the lyrics, presenting the music as a kind of soundtrack to Island life, putting you in and at home.
For the members of Villages, who grew up on traditional Celtic music, to create and perform new music in that tradition is no small feat, and no small responsibility. They know where they come from. They know how it made them. And they know where their Dark Island lies.
Reviving the Cape Breton sound of their ancestry and mixing it with contemporary influences and instruments, Villages are an intriguing case study in cultural identity.
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