BillBoard World #1 Album
Skilfully crafted and seemingly delivered with ease, String Theory is an album that you just have to lie back and revel in. One helluva record, this is music, natural without any additives
– Simon Jones, fRoots Magazine
Galway quartet press home their “Celticgrass” crossover credentials with their most confident and accomplished release to date. The result is dizzying in its eclecticism, ravishing in its amalgam of influences – Michael Quinn, Songlines Magazine
We Banjo 3 are one of the hottest bands on the “traditional” music circuit. At the time a complete unknown to me, I first saw them last winter and they not only knocked my socks off, they knocked everybody’s socks off. If you get one Celtic album this year, this is it.
– Amos Perrine, No Depression
These four guys are the new super group. This new cd is as close to perfect as mere mortals should try for – Jack Baker, Irish American News
A hugely enjoyable album, different from anything else out there – Dave Hadfield, Living Tradition
String Theory is a great album with some spectacular tunes and fine songs – Dai Jefferies, Folking.com
“String Theory” is replete with the trademark WB3 bluegrass groove, old-timey swing, contemporary folk polish and Irish trad drive – Sean Smith, Boston Irish
Their tremendous instrumental virtuosity is a leading factor in their success – a great album from a great band! – Markus Dehm, Irland-journal.de
IRISH TIMES ALBUM OF THE DAY – ****
The momentum that’s gathered under the collective posteriors of We Banjo 3 is nothing short of Olympian. String Theory, their fourth album, sees them hurtle into the wide blue yonder with a kit bag of exceptional tunes and a propulsive wit that tickles at the perimeter of many of their sets. String Theory benefits from a panoply of arrangements that buff and polish that fiery banjo ensemble sound. David Howley’s lead vocals have grown in stature along with his songwriting chops, and he reaches sublime heights on the picaresque harmonies of Two Sisters.
The beautifully executed cover art adds further to the three-dimensional delights of this collection.
– Siobhan Long, Irish Times
On String Theory, We Banjo 3 reveals a playful confidence in its virtuosic string mastery – a powerful vehicle of instrumentalism that dances and jigs through “Good Time Old Time,” swells broodingly across “Island Orchard” into the chugging rhythms of a day’s hard work, and rumbles atop a flurry of picking that runs atop a tightrope between the continents on “Kentucky Grind.”
When adding vocals, the band’s musical traditions merge even more closely, tying the trials and triumphs experienced across its native Ireland with the melodies spun from blue-collar Appalachia in the opening reflection of “This is Home” and bounding forth with universal joy in “Happiness.”
– Erik Ernst, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Hillbilly music was something brought over from the auld sod so it should come as no surprise this crew for first rate Irish musicians should be so skilled at Appalachian string music. Pioneers of Celtgrass, this will blow you head right open in ways that it hasn’t been since the debuts of Hot Rize, New Grass Revival and the rest of the trend setters of the early 70s. Killer stuff throughout by crew of Irish award winners who know their stuff so well they could teach it in their sleep. The year is only half over but this could quite possibly be the organic/back porch record of the year. Killer stuff throughout.
– Chris Spector, midwestrecord.com
Take a large pinch of Irish tradition, mix with a similar portion of American heritage, pour in a large slice of innovation, then blend in strong tinges of Appalachian legacy, bring to the boil through the dazzling musical talent and dexterity … the result is ‘String Theory’ the latest album from We Banjo 3 (a different approach to a band name considering there are four of them). And that sums up this band, unexpected, innovative, overflowing with energy and essentially, different.
Sometimes called ‘Irish Bluegrass’ or for the perpetual name-inventors, ‘Celtgrass’, this music takes the best ingredients of its collective folk and roots customs to whip up a brew that breaks boundaries and redefines classification. Long and intricate twist the links between Celts and the Americas, untwining the relations of influence is impossible. The simplest solution is refrain from placing the music on ‘String Theory’ into any identity-boxes and simply go with the flow of original compositions, revitalised rhythms, mesmerising melodies, inventive tunes … and enjoy the result.
The songs come from deep wells of feeling, ‘This Is Home’, opens and instantly focuses your attention with its message of hope, the infectious and effervescent ‘Happiness’ is one of those songs that simply put a smile on your face, while the raw sentiment of‘Trying To Leave’ is obvious. The tune sets include get-up-and-groove delights like ‘Good Time Old Time’, the mix of ‘Kentucky Grind’ and sparkling ‘Aunt Jemima’s Plaster’.
‘String Theory’ delivers gentle tunes hand-in-hand with irrepressible foot-stomping reels and jigs entwined with expressive ballads, never has the banjo been taken to so many places it never thought to go. We Banjo 3 take you through a concoction that you’ll want to savour again, and again.
– Tim Carroll, FolkWorlds
We Banjo 3 are something special. they’ve pioneered a new genre fusion of Celtgrass. It’s remarkable to hear this music and think it’s only four musicians behind the tunes – jam-tastic!
Colleen Taylor, The Irish Echo