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kaitlyn ni donovan

Country of origin:


Type of music generally:

Evocative/eclectic alternative pop


Most recent release, songs for 'three days' (1999)

See also:

Wikipedia's entry for Kaitlyn Ni Donovan

Kaitlyn Ni Donovan's MySpace page

The High Violets site (a side project); the Ectophiles' Guide's entry for The High Violets


Early Jane Siberry; Mae Moore's Bohemia-era music, but this is more individual and evocative, a little less mainstream pop.

Covers/own material:


General comments:

She's got a knock-out voice and writes songs that are completely and perfectly themselves, and catchy. Her work is individual, subtle, and quietly seductive. (Neile)

She has a seductive, lush voice. (

Comments about live performance:

I saw her live at a local club, and her performance was wonderful—the sound live is similar to that of her recordings, but with subtle differences and the added edge that comes from a strong live performance and interaction with other musicians and the audience. Her music, as always, drew me in utterly and the set seemed far too short. (2000, Neile)

Her performance was magical/mesmerising. The music wrapped me up like a warm velvet blanket and twists and turns. Even though I was the only one who had heard her before it seems, she was attracting a good crowd by the stage area by the end of her set. (10/00,

Recommended first album:

songs for 'three days'


cannibal spirit ep

Release info:

1994—knd cannibal music (cassette-only release)


Out of Print

Ecto priority:

Recommended for Kaitlyn Ni Donovan fans

Group members:

Kaitlyn Ni Donovan—vocals, acoustic gutar, violin

Guest artists:

Mark Anderson—electric guitar
Sean MacLean—drums
Xumo—accordion on 1 track

Produced by:

Kaitlyn Ni Donovan


Kaitlyn Ni Donovan calls this her Goth album, and it does have a quiet, shadowy Goth spirit (songs are called "solitude", "until hereafter", "uncle fester", "the place", "free", and "overgrown graveyard") and some occasional deliberately eerie moments, but still bears a strong resemblance to her later work. The songwriting doesn't yet show the assurance, poise, and individuality of dinner with bosch and songs for 'three days', but the way she puts levels of sound together is already impressive. A must-have for Ni Donovan fans. (Neile)

dinner with bosch ep

Release info:

1995—New Weave Records, P.O. Box 17553, Portland OR 97217, U.S.A.—NW-645 (cassette-only release)


Possibly out of print—try writing label

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended

Group members:

Kaitlyn ni Donovan—vocals, guitars, violin

Guest artists:

Zumo—accordion, guitar, glockenspiel, mandolin, wurlitzer
Eric Furlong—bass
Jonathan Drew—guitars
Diana M.—tap dancing

Produced by:

Jeff & Kaitlyn


This is short, but wonderful, and I've loved it since I bought it, and have played it more than almost all of my cassette-only releases. There are only six songs, but in that space she managed to impress me so much I've been looking for more music from her ever since. Each of the songs is catchy and different but not overstated. (Neile)

songs for 'three days'

Release info:

1999—Hush Records, Box 12713, Portland OR 97212—018


Wide in the Pacific Northwest of the U.S.; also by mail order from label

Ecto priority:

Must have

Group members:

kaitlyn ni donovan—voice, guitar, violin, viola, mandolin, ukulele

Guest artists:

james angell—piano
nigel barnes—accordion
sierra collom—violin
jonathan drews—guitar
eric furling—bass
erika jacobs—cello
tony lash—drums, percussion, organ, piano, bass
patrick lynch—drums
eric matthews—flugelhorn
matt wayne—guitar
jude webre—double bass
gregg williams—percussion

Produced by:

tony lash


The full-length album is just as wonderful as her previous tape—rich and quiet. Or maybe it's even better because there's more of it. This is one of those discs that's hard to describe: it's creative but subtle about it, rather in the way that Mae Moore's Bohemia snuk its way into our hearts, but I would say this is more subtle, less pop, and that Kaitlyn ni Donovan is a more individual artist, but like Mae Moore, if you're not careful she'll slip right by you. Listen. The more you listen the more you'll hear. (Neile)

This is a wonderful disc as some of you know. Beautiful voice and songs. Minimal yet affecting. (

One of my favourite albums of the year. (

Further info:

kaitlyn ni donovan has contributed to various compilations including New Weave Artists: Timecode, and Hush Records' compilations More, Mass, and flag.

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DISCLAIMER: Comments and reviews in the Ectophiles' Guide are excerpted from the ecto mailing list or volunteered by members of the list. They are the opinions of music enthusiasts, not professional music critics.

Entry last updated 2015-06-01 00:41:37.
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