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Reviews

Album - Lle awn ni nesa'? - 2017

Nearly two years after their notable debut EP, Dwyn y Dail, Patrobas have released an album that fully delivers on their early promise. Lle awn ni nesa'? is first-rate contemporary folk; a fusion of deep rooted musical heritage and understated rock, threaded through with a keen pop sensibility.

Since their first release the band, Wil Chidley, Iestyn Tyne and Carwyn Williams (on drums, but who also plays bass in Anglesey rock band Fleur de Lys), have been augmented by Gruffydd Davies. Gruffydd primarily contributes bass to these recordings, and has a background that takes in orchestral music and brass bands, which adds another dimension to Patrobas.

With the varied background and interest of each of the four members there is an awful lot of hinterland to be drawn on for their new songs. Most obviously in places you can hear the impression left by Wil's love of Mumford & Sons, elsewhere the closer to home influence of Cowbois Rhos Botwnnog is inescapable; but endless live performances have given the band the time to develop their own coherent sound. It's evident especially in the album's standout tracks: listen to Mi fydd hi'n fora (Morning Shall Come), Paid rhoi fyny (Don't give up) and the irresistible singalong Castell Aber - and all three offer distinctive and elating music.

There is no weak link in the band, it's the balance and deft interplay between each musician that is Patrobas' essential foundation - but in this collection of songs Iestyn Tyne's violin is especially notable in the way it breathes life and excites whenever it appears. The instrumentals he takes the lead on - Difyrrwch Sieff-Sieffre and Dormeo - are energised by his vivid playing, but elsewhere he has the same consistent impact.

The last song of the set, Dalianiala, has a gorgeous, plaintive guest vocal from Branwen Williams duetting with Wil, and an expressive cornet part, played by Gruffydd. The combination is heart melting - a shift in mood from the rest of the album, but a perfect close.

Even with the clear positive signals from their debut EP, Lle awn ni nesa'? is an unexpected box of delights from the Llŷn peninsula. Open hearted, uplifting and infectious music written under a big sky - undeniably magnificent.

EP - Dwyn y Dail - 2015

(translated from Welsh)

This is the debut EP from Patrobas, the folk band from Llŷn. Patrobas was the bardic name of one of Llŷn's poets - Robert Gruffydd (1832 - 63) of Nefyn. The EP consists of five songs. Four members make up the band; Wil Chidley (guitar, vocals, banjo and mandolin), Iestyn Tyne (fiddle, mandolin), Carwyn Williams (bass guitar), and Ronw Roberts (drums). The influence of folk groups such as Calan, Cowbois Rhos Botwnnog, Ar Log and Gwerinos is evident on the faster tracks. 'Mwncwns Abertawe' is a fast dance track and 'Deio i Dywyn' is in the same spirit. The fiddle, heard here in question and answer with the vocals reflects the instrumental tradition, and the slower middle part is more experimental. Another, more personal dimension is to be heard in the slower tracks. The band have cited influences such as Gai Toms on these tracks, but I also hear the style of artists such as Bob Delyn and Huw M at times. I know of some of the members of Patrobas as talented individuals who are totally committed to the folk tradition, but this particular mix of ingredients creates and unique and exciting sound. I hope that the band will continue to develop their personal style as they mature.

Sioned Webb
Barn

​Dwyn y Dail yw casgliad gyntaf y grŵp ifanc o Ben Llŷn ac fel cyfanwaith cerddorol mae’n sicr yn werth gwrando arno. Heb os, canlyniad i gigio cyson Patrobas ar draws Gogledd- Orllewin y wlad yw’r EP o 5 cân.
‘Mwncws Abertawe’ yw’r trac agoriadol, clywir ddawn y Ffidlwyr, Iestyn Tyne, yn amlwg yn y darn hwn. O’r dechrau amlygir ddylanwad bro a thirlun y pedwar, sydd yn cyd-weddu’r gân yn arbennig. Cafodd yr ail drac ei rhyddhau yn gynharach eleni fel rhan o sengl, trac lle y clywir ddylanwadau’r band yn fwy amlwg. Ceir tebygrwydd rhwng ‘Meddwl ar goll’ i ganeuon cynnar Cowbois Rhos Botwnnog, megis y chwedlonol ‘Musus Glaw.’
Mae’r drydedd gân yn alaw draddodiadol. O bosib dyma’r gwanaf ar yr EP, gan nad yw petai’n plethu’n llawn gyda’r traciau eraill i greu cyfanwaith. Er hyn, dwi’n hoff iawn o’r modd y moderneiddiwyd yr alaw o’i chymharu â fersiwn yr athrylith,, Mered Evans, dangosa felly bod y band ifanc yn hyderus wrth ddelio gyda’r hen alawon. Y pedwerydd trac yw’r cryfaf, o bosib. Clywir mwy o fynd wrth iddynt blethu roc â gwerin. ‘Lladron’ yw’r olaf, a fy ffefryn i. Ceir defnydd da o’r gitâr acwstig a gan gyfleu naws hydrefol yr EP ac esbonio’r teitl, ‘Dwyn y Dail’.
Un peth sy’n sicr yw bod Wil, Iestyn, Carwyn a Ronw yn gwybod yn iawn pa fath o gerddoriaeth maent yn ei gyfansoddi. Hynod o braf hefyd yw medru adolygu gwaith a wthia ffiniau cerddoriaeth Gymraeg. Wrth i’w cerddoriaeth aeddfedu, edrychaf ymlaen at glywed mwy gan Patrobas ar lwyfan ac ar dâp.

Y Gigiadur

Un o’r pethau cyntaf sydd ei angen ar grŵp newydd ydi enw sy’n tynnu sylw neu’n codi chwilfrydedd.
Mae grŵp ifanc o ben Llŷn wedi ticio’r bocs hwnnw yn syth efo’r enw Patrobas.
Er gwybodaeth, enw barddol Robert Gruffydd (1832 – 1863), Pen-y-Maes, Nefyn oedd Patrobas, ond mae’n debyg mai enw Beiblaidd ydyw’n wreiddiol, sy’n cyfeirio at aelod o’r gymuned Gristnogol yn Rhufain. Ta waeth, grŵp gwerin-roc ifanc ac egniol ydi Patrobas rwan, ac maen nhw newydd ryddhau eu CD gyntaf.
Yr aelodau ydi Wil Chidley, gitâr a prif lais; Iestyn Tyne, ffidil; Carwyn Williams, gitar fâs, a Ronw Roberts, drymiau.
Methais ei perfformiadau yn yr Eisteddfod, ond gwelais y grŵp yn perfformio yng Ngŵyl Pendraw’r Byd, Aberdaron ym mis Medi, a’u mwynhau’n fawr.
Yn fyw, maen nhw’n chwarae cymysgedd o ganeuon gwreiddiol gan artistiaid eraill a gan aelodau’r band, ynghyd â chaneuon ac alawon traddodiadol. Maen nhw’n gartrefol iawn ar lwyfan, ac mae ‘arweinydd’ y band, Wil Chidley, yn deall i’r dim sut i gael y gynulleidfa ar eu traed.
O’r pum trac sydd ar eu CD gyntaf mae ‘na set o alawon traddodiadol, ac mae’r gân werin adnabyddus Deio i Dywyn. Caneuon gwreiddiol ydi’r tri trac arall.
Mae’r alawon yn wych, a Iestyn yn goblyn o ffidlwr, sydd ag arddull werinol gref.
Dwi’n hoff o’u trefniant o Deio i Dywyn hefyd.
Mae’r caneuon gwreiddiol yn fwy myfyriol efallai, ond eto, maen nhw’n dangos addewid bendant.
Mae ‘na ddyfodol disglair i Patrobas!

Tudur Huws Jones
Yr Herald Cymraeg