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A group that describes itself as "brick-throwing" Celtic rock" might not conjure up images of tin whistles and kilts, but these are indeed also parts of the Jackdaw experience. The band is based out of Buffalo, NY, and has been releasing music since the late '90s, beginning with a pair of EPs and graduating to full-length discs. The CDArmed & Legged as well as a self-titled set were both released in 2002. Fiddler Joe Davies is one of the instrumentalists in the band that has gotten heavy nods from critics, and that is not a reference to anyone falling asleep during a Jackdaw show. Kilts and tin whistles are provided courtesy of multi-instrumentalist David Moore, whose physical antics on-stage seem a wee bit inspired by Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull. Moore is more than just a jump-around showman, however; he is an accomplished player on bagpipes, accordion, and concertina as well as on his dinky whistle.
The brothers Mike and Tommy Jordan tighten the group's nuts and bolts through the kind of sibling communication that has been a trademark of music history's many "brother" bands. Frontman Tim Byrne, often dressed in black with a cigarette hanging from his lips, presents an image that tends to confirm the group's rock influence even before a sound has been played. This rocking aspect is present in more than just visuals alone -- drummer George Tutuska, for example, was an early member of the Goo Goo Dolls. Jackdaw has established a loyal following through regular touring, performing at both rock clubs and folk festivals. While naming a band after a bird is normally not something that confuses discographers, the noisy jackdaw has actually wound up credited as a participant on several records, including a Johnny Winter side from the late '60s. This small crow with a voice loud enough to be heard above Winter's electric guitar could probably also make a grand contribution to the band named Jackdaw, but has yet to be asked into a recording session. ~ Eugene Chadbourne