The Strathclyde Suite was the official center of fun Wednesday night. Gaelic singer Maggie MacInnes, backed by wisecracking Brian McAlpine (piano/accordion) and Anna Massie (guitar/fiddle), filled the first half with gorgeous song and gentle banter. MacInnes, arguably the queen of the Gaelic heartbroken love song, was in fine voice, singing songs of dark-haired, handsome men and the women who love them…or would like to love them, if only she had a cow.
After announcing that the special note of the evening was D, Genticorum launched into their trademark sound, a combination of joy and power, with Pascal Gemme’s feet tapping out the heartbeat. How could anyone keep from smiling and bouncing? The band immediately connected with the audience with humorous introductions to a “psychedelic country rock call and response song” (Les Menteries), and then “The Showerhead Reels,” inspired by two different settings on a showerhead and marking Alexandre de Grosbois-Garand’s coming out of the closet as a fiddle player. The happiness scale nearly pegged, Genticorum upped the ante with “Galope Doux Bedon,” composed for a cat named Sir Lulu of the Soft Tummy. Guitarist Yann Falquet warned the crowd that there might be cases of spontaneous combustion due to an overabundance of happiness! Every song and tune rates a mention, from the voyageur songs to the hypnotic “Reel Circulaire.” It was a too-short evening of warmth, joy, and laughter.
— Catherine Keegan