Synopsis by Nathan Southern
The candid documentary Iona does for the eponymous Scottish-born, Celtic folk band what Let it Be and Bring on the Night did for The Beatles and Sting. A cinema direct documentary shot in 1990, the film chronicles the genesis of Iona's May 1992 sophomore effort, the EP The Book of Kells. Opening with stunning footage of the Isle of Iona -- the locale which inspired the band to take shape and imparted its name -- and of the band's trip to visit this milieu, the program segues into alternately poignant, earnest, and humorous behind-the-scenes discussions between the seven group members: David Bainbridge, Nick Beggs, Pete Whitfield, Terl Bryand, Troy Donockley, and Joanna Hogg. In never-before-glimpsed footage, we hear the musicians brainstorming about the concepts behind -- and content of -- their forthcoming second effort. Also included is rare performance film of Iona playing its first live concert before a packed audience, in the very early '90s, during which they perform the music available on their self-titled 1990 EP. The nine songs include: "Turning Tide," "Flight of the Wild Goose," "Here I Stand," "Trilogy," "Beijing," "Columcille," "A'Machair," and "Iona."