Runrig: The Story

The final chapter of a tale that began over 40 years ago.

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The sentiment flowing between Runrig and their fans at their decision to make this their farewell studio album is a palpable thing, and The Story is a work of entirely appropriate poignancy and power.

The band marked their 40th anniversary in 2013 and, admirably, wanted to end their recording story on a fresh note. This valediction won’t leave many dry eyes among those who’ve made the 14-album odyssey with them. It’s invested with performances both on a grand scale and pared down, and has inevitably reflective lyrics, such as those on Rise And Fall and The Years We Shared. There are simple acoustic pleasures such as Every Beating Heart, amid the combination of English and Gaelic that has served Runrig so well. Lest we forget, the band’s sprawling achievements included two UK Top 5 albums in the early 1990s, and there’s even what we used to call a “radio track” in the rocky 18th July. When they get to the emotional apogee of Somewhere, with the 32-piece Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, you can almost sense them closing the studio door behind them. As founder member Calum MacDonald says, the album tells many stories, but chiefly their own.

Paul Sexton

Prog Magazine contributor Paul Sexton is a London-based journalist, broadcaster and author who started writing for the national UK music press while still at school in 1977. He has written for all of the British quality press, most regularly for The Times and Sunday Times, as well as for Radio Times, Billboard, Music Week and many others. Sexton has made countless documentaries and shows for BBC Radio 2 and inflight programming for such airlines as Virgin Atlantic and Cathay Pacific. He contributes to Universal's uDiscoverMusic site and has compiled numerous sleeve notes for the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton and other major artists. He is the author of Prince: A Portrait of the Artist in Memories & Memorabilia and, in rare moments away from music, supports his local Sutton United FC and, inexplicably, Crewe Alexandra FC.