The Breath is a Manchester-based innovative folk band inspired by Celtic music, rock, ambient electronic, and other influences. The group is led by vocalist, lyricist and flute player Ríoghnach Connolly and guitarist and composer Stuart McCallum. They met through MySpace in 2010 when McCallum was looking for a singer.
Ríoghnach Connolly was born in Armagh (Northern Ireland) and is currently based in Manchester. She is known for her work with Afro Celt Sound System and Honeyfeet. Ríoghnach has an extraordinary voice.
Stuart McCallum was born in Manchester. He is an exploratory guitarist, known for his masterful loops and effects. He worked with Cinematic Orchestra and released various solo albums.
The other two members of the original The Breath are drummer Luke Flowers and pianist John Ellis.
The group attracted a lot of attention in 2016 with its debut album Carry Your Kin on Real World Records, recorded in Manchester and at Real World Studios, mixed by Tchad Blake.
Carry Your Kin (Real World Records, 2016)
Let The Cards Fall (Real World Records, 2018)
British band The Breath, featuring guitarist Stuart McCallum and vocalist, lyricist and flutist, Ríoghnach Connolly has released a music video for ‘Let the Cards Fall.’ Thesong is the title-track from their second album, scheduled for release in September 2018 on Real World Records.
The song is partly inspired by Queen Macha, an ancient Irish legend and the namesake of Armagh, Ríoghanch’s birthplace.
The video for ‘Let The Cards Fall’ was directed by Luca Rudlin.
Contemporary Irish folk music group The Breath is set to perform on Tuesday, October 25, 2016 at The Capstone Theatre, Liverpool Hope University Creative Campus.
The Breath is Stuart McCallum (former guitarist of The Cinematic Orchestra), Irish singer Rioghnach Connolly, and McCallum’s fellow Cinematic colleague, pianist John Ellis, along with drummer Elliot Bennett.
Born out of Manchester’s fertile music scene, they mix Irish folk influences with mesmerizing guitar riffs, anthemic themes and powerful hooks.
Carry Your Kin deliver a form of ethereal folk where we find a combination of folk-style lyrics with dreamy electronic effects and pop hooks.
The Breath’s guitarist Stuart McCallum provides the ambience throughout the album with his processed electric guitar that generates lush, cinematic loops and soundscapes (he’s the former guitarist of The Cinematic Orchestra) and effects. Another key element is Irish singer-songwriter Rioghnach Connolly who drifts from dreamy, whispered vocals to passionate soulful songs.
Although there is a connection to Irish folk music in the lyrics and vocals, you won’t find any traditional musical instruments. Rioghnach Connolly sings about birth, death, women’s rights, first love, motherhood, the loss of life at sea, and post-colonial injustices.
The lineup on Carry Your Kin includes Rioghnach Connolly on vocals; Stuart McCallum on guitars; John Ellis on piano; Robin Mullarkey on bass; and Luke Flowers on drums.
Carry Your Kin presents the absorbing sound of Manchester band The Breath, who provide beautifully crafted atmospheric folk songs.