aims to offer the most compelling biblically-based content to Christians on their walk with Jesus. is your online destination for all areas of Christian Living – faith, family, fun, and community. Each category is further divided into areas important to you and your Christian faith including Bible study, daily devotions, marriage, parenting, movie reviews, music, news, and more.

Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

Anthology 1995-2005

  • reviewed by Andy Argyrakis Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2005 1 Oct
Anthology 1995-2005
Sounds like … brimming melodies like the Beatles, Celtic undertones like the Chieftains, all tied around spiritual songwriting. At a glance … Ceili Rain's crème de la crème, loaded with interesting instrumentation and frontman Bob Halligan Jr.'s inventive lyrics.Track Listing That's All the Lumber I Don't Need a Picture Love Travels You Then Me Then You Then Me Long Black Cadillac Jigorous God Done Good Thanks Long For You Barely Stay Inside My Own Skin Junkyard 100 Smiles An Hour Everything Good is You Like a Train Stomp

Before forming Ceili Rain ten years ago, Bob Halligan Jr. was penning tunes for the likes of Cher, Michael Bolton, The Guess Who and Judas Priest. But after a solo record for Atlantic didn't catch wind, he formed this Celtic influenced ensemble, which was an outlet to combine clever artistry with spirituality. Despite taking a bit to catch on, artists like Eli and Rebecca St. James covered Ceili Rain's songs and the group developed an underground following.

The new Anthology 1995-2005 is precisely that, pooling together fan favorites off the band's four albums. The familiar sounds of "That's All the Lumber," "I Don't Need a Picture" and "You Then Me Then You Then Me" comprise the early portion, demonstrating the group's instrumental ingenuity. Even more invigorating is the jumpy electric guitar flair of "Junkyard" and the bagpipe drenched "Jigorous," crossing the likes of the Chieftains and the Beatles.

The Fab Four's influence also shines through on more recent material, such as the ballad "Everything Good Is You" and the celebratory "Like a Train." Halligan's voice sounds remarkably like John Lennon, while his songwriting evokes the pop power of Paul McCartney. As the record rounds out with the Irish jig "Stomp," Ceili Rain further gets listeners dancing to a rowdy mix of percussion and accordion arrangements.

While this is a great introduction to new listeners, fans must note there aren't any new songs and the liner notes are especially thin despite the short song explanations. It's nevertheless a one-stop shop to find all the gang's treasures in a single package, tied around an incredibly unique spread of sounds. Consider this collection to properly close the book on Ceili Rain's first ten years, while hopefully opening the door to the next decade.

© Andy Argyrakis, subject to licensing agreement with Christianity Today International. All rights reserved. Click for reprint information.