Let The Cards Fall

The Breath

Directed by Luca Rudlin

Taken from The Breath‘s sophomore album Let The Cards Fall, released on 14 September 2018.

The song is a delicate, wistful ode partly inspired by Queen Macha, of ancient Irish legend and the namesake of Armagh, Ríoghanch’s birthplace. Everyone needs a role model and Ríoghnach opts for Macha; who “rode on to the battlefield nine months pregnant, slaughtered all around her and then gave birth right there.” She can be maternal as well as murderous. Ríoghnach also invokes Suhail, a bright star on the southern horizon that becomes a protective deity, for ‘my brothers, caught in the crossfire’: ordinary people, vulnerable to the processes of history.

The song exemplifies the great clashing virtues of the pair. Ríoghnach, possessed of Celtic primitivism and visionary intimacy, Stuart, a guitarist of considerable tonal range, is ethereal and searching, never content to slip into conventional form and thrives in the gap between freedom and restraint. The picking pattern, he informs, derives from Villa-Lobos’ Etude No. 1. There’s a feeling of a lull before the storm, a respite that offers space for nurturing and healing.

More from The Breath

Further reading

Join the Real World Vinyl Club

Portico Quartet's double LP Live/Remix will be the second featured album in the monthly series.

Iarla Ó Lionáird & Ríoghnach Connolly awarded Folk Singer of the Year titles

The lead singers of The Gloaming and The Breath were honoured at ceremonies in Manchester & Dublin.

Novelist Michael Cunningham previews new Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh & Thomas Bartlett album

The Pulitzer Prize winning novelist shares his thoughts on the beautiful new album.

Exploring the musical dialogue of Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh & Thomas Bartlett’s debut album

Sophie Harris speaks to The Gloaming's Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh and Thomas Bartlett about their new...