“The Turning Tide” (Compass 4530) from Irish-American supergroup Solas will be released on February 16, 2010. For readers who are already Solas fans, this release will be a familiar listen. It fits like a comfy, well-worn glove: one part exciting tune sets, brilliantly arranged and impeccaby performed; one part gorgeous, ethereal songs from vocalist Mairead Phelan; and one part lush, cinematic landscapes. This is Mairead’s second album with Solas, and she seems to have hit her stride. Whether she is singing a traditional ballad or a modern composition, hers is the call of a siren, even if her breathy whisper is a bit distracting at times. From unrequited love to contemporary social commentary, Mairead delivers the goods on “The Turning Tide.” Solas band members Seamus Egan, Winifred Horan, Mick McAuley, Eamon McElholm and Mairead Phelan have again reset the bar for exuberance and beauty in modernized traditional Irish music. Fiddlefreak recommended!