Maoláin - The El Mocambo, Toronto - March 21, 2012 Canadian Music Week

Review and Photos by Dave MacIntyre

My decision to take a peek at the action on the top floor of the El Mocambo resulted in experiencing the evening’s highlight performance, but for a few anxious minutes, it looked like it might not even happen. Event staff scrambled around testing connections in an effort to get the keyboard to emit sound and appeared more stressed out than Maoláin’s (pronounced Mullen) own keyboardist who coolly reset the software to get it working.  That cool, calm and collected demeanor is really what about Maoláin is all about. 

The five “good old boys” had the crowd’s attention for their entire set, performing a perfect of blend of foot-stomping Celtic, rockabilly and alt-country songs.  It’s the type of music that energizes a room, gets arms swinging, toes tapping and goes down smooth with cold beer.  My personal favourite was “Workin’ at the Whiskey Still”, a roots country and bluegrassy blend of Dwight Yoakum, Johnny Cash, and Steve Earl’s “Copper Head Road”.  Maoláin consists of a fun bunch of guys having a good time and it’s highly contagious.