EP Review: Tosú // Fínn

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Irish newcomers Fínn have released their debut EP Tosú, a blues-infused electric folk offering. Long-time friends and veterans of the Northern Irish music scene Nicole McMonagle, Niall Hanna and Mark McCrory have come together as Fínn, an electric folk group with strong influences of blues rock and traditional Irish sounds.

Formed around the talents of vocalist McMonagle and guitarists Hanna and McCrory, Fínn are releasing their debut EP after months of successful livestreamed shows, including Cuppa Tea TV’s Blossom sessions.

Hanna and McCrory are no strangers to the Belfast scene with their work together in HAYPARK and McMonagle has gigged all around Ireland, including a coveted slot in Dublin’s Ruby Sessions, which have also played host to the likes of Ed Sheeran and Hozier. Together the trio realised that they have something unique.

Aptly titled Tosú (from the Irish word for ‘beginning’), the extended play comprises three original tracks. Opening with the bluesy rhythm of ‘Pale’, McMonagle’s falsetto soars as the track gains momentum, erupting into heavy blues guitar that you can’t help but tap your foot along to. There’s an unmistakable intimacy to this track that harks back to the band’s folk roots, even with its loud guitar and towering chorus.

The brooding second track ‘What’s Mine’ rumbles along with ominous restraint, promising “I feel fine / I’m taking what’s mine” – the gentle plucking is hypnotic and has a timelessness to it.

On closer ‘Waiting in the Still’, McMonagle’s vocals intertwine beautifully with the frolicking guitar licks and with the driving bass. The haunting quality of her voice brings tenderness to an otherwise riff-fuelled track, recalling the cadence of Cara Dillon. Despite its bluesy groove and folk feel, the vocal style and fingerpicking are underpinned by Irish trad influence that differentiates Fínn from their contemporaries in either genre.

Fínn are unlike anything on the UK and Irish scenes at the moment. Tosú sounds like traditional Celtic sounds electrified via the Deep South. Where the trio takes this crossover sound next will be well worth following.

Tosú is available on all streaming sites from 19th November. 

Words by Kristen Sinclair


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