The Kildare duo Michael Hopkins & Andrew Lloyd aka Planet Parade will release their debut album Mercury on Friday.

The duo have impressed me lots over the last few years and Mercury marks their first album card with shimmering artful synth-pop imbued with ambience and tropical sunny grooves. Have a listen to the album now, featuring previous singles ‘Face To Face’, ‘Cardiac’ and ‘Blue Sky’.

Have a first listen right here first:

MERCURY – Track List

1. Face to Face
2. Top of the Heap
3. Blue Sky
4. Mute Swan
5. Jump Ship
6. Begin Again
7. Zodiac
8. Cold Blood
9. History Lesson
10. Sweet Claire
11. In The Dark

Posted on February 20th, 2017

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The Kildare duo Michael Hopkins & Andrew Lloyd aka Planet Parade have announced their debut album Mercury will be released in September.

The band have been quietly recording the LP since releasing their summer single ‘Blue Sky’ last year. That followed ‘You’ll Be Sorry’ and ‘Cardiac’ which came after a four-year hiatus.

‘Face To Face’ is Mercury’s opening track, a song that further redraws the lines of the band’s sound into a world of bright shimmering tropical-pop music.

MERCURY – Track List

1. Face to Face
2. Top of the Heap
3. Blue Sky
4. Mute Swan
5. Jump Ship
6. Begin Again
7. Zodiac
8. Cold Blood
9. History Lesson
10. Sweet Claire
11. In The Dark

Posted on May 16th, 2016

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Groove Festival takes place in Killruddery House, Co. Wicklow on Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd July (same weekend as Castlepalooza), and while the headliners aimed at an older audience than most with the likes of The Blades, The 4 of Us, Ocean Colour Scene and Neville Staple Band playing, Turning Pirate have put together a stage of newer acts worth checking out.

The Hop House 13stage will feature sets from David Kitt, TooFools, Sample Answer, Planet Parade, The Young Folk, Barq, Zaska, Swords and Anderson among them.

The Academic and Elm are also playing the main stage. Tickets from €49.50 for a day pass + fees.

More info on the festival at the Groove site.

Posted on April 18th, 2016

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Thursday December 31 – New Year’s Eve

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Friday January 1 – New Year’s Day

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Posted on December 22nd, 2015

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Win free entry:


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Tuesday December 15

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  • Ash @ Olympia Theatre (€23)
    [Rock] NI boys
  • The Ruby Sessions @ Doyle’s (9pm, €6)
    [Acoustic club] Special guests – if you like the Ruby Sessions you’ll love tonight.

Wednesday December 16

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  • Rae Sremmurd @ Vicar Street (€32.50)
    [Rap] Hare Squead support.
  • The Riptide Movement @ Whelan’s (€23)
    [Rock] Fourth and final date.
  • Perspectives 2015: Brad Mehldau @ NCH (€30-40)
    [Solo Piano]  Jazz pianist
  • Drillmas @ District 8 (€6/€10, 10:30pm)
    [Dance] Glacial Sound Tjugo Lax [Welcome] Bobofunk B2B Ed Fay [Flush Dublin] Rosbeg B2B DJ TALENTS [Palisade]
  • Paul McLoone’s Christmas Party @ The Workman’ Club (SOLD OUT)
    [Live Radio party] ASH, Jape and HamsandwicH
  • DJ Yella of NWA @ Hangar (€11-€16 , 10:30pm)
    [DJ set ]  NWA’s DJ. This is either a great idea or a crap one. Probably the former.

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Thursday December 17

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Friday December 18

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Saturday December 19

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Posted on December 15th, 2015

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How to enter free entry comps – Email [email protected] with the gig above in the Subject line you’re entering for along with your full name and phone number (for late contact) in the body of the message. Full info on each show below. Draw closes at 6pm the day before the gig or Friday 1pm latest for weekend gigs.


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Tuesday December 8

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  • Kojaque, Dah Jevu @ Whelan’s (€5)
    [Hip-hop] A new breed of Dublin rap.
  • The Ruby Sessions @ Doyle’s (9pm, €6)
    [Acoustic club] Special guests promised.
  • Lennon Live @ The Grand Social (€10)
    [Cover night] 35th Anniversary Special as performed by The Johnny Rayge Band. 

Wednesday December 9

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Thursday December 10

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Friday December 11

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Sunday December 13

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Monday December 14

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  • The Vaccines @ Olympia Theatre (€23)
    [Indie/pop] Date changed from the 8th to the 14th
  • The Wailers @ The Academy (€32)
    [Reggae]  Bob’s backing band continue to play.
  • Gavin James @ Whelan’s (SOLD OUT)
    [Pop] Singer-songwriter

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Posted on December 8th, 2015

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Since re-appearing last year, Michael Hopkins and Andrew Lloyd, aka Planet Parade have sculpted some wonderful sounds, both live and on record.

‘Blue Sky’ is a highlight I remember from their Block T show last year with us, an unabashed summer jam with Vampire Weekend-style melodies and breezy instrumentation. Drink this tropical taste in.

The song is released digitally on August 28th.

Photo by Dara Munnis Photography

Posted on August 13th, 2015

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Having recently revealed some of the smaller goings on at the festival on the grounds of Ballinlough Castle including Wonderlust, Myles O’Reilly’s Arbutus Yarns Theatre, Body Holidays 1970’s style holiday camp, Pagoda Stage, Port Royal Jamaican village and more, today Body & Soul revealed Tree Haus, a new stage curated by Homebeat for the festival on the summer solstice weekend of June 19th to 21st.

Focusing on the best of contemporary Irish music and culture, you can expect performances from My Tribe Your Tribe, Buffalo Woman, Carriages, Planet Parade, Liza Flume, Ghosts, Slowplacelikehome, Hilary Woods, Skelocrats, Little Xs For Eyes, Elephant, Hare Squead, Bantum, Nubus, Justin Grounds & Pearse McGloughlin (Idiot Songs), Sea Legs (Ciaran Lavery x Ryan Vail), Hare Squead, Nova Collective, Feather and Ben Bix, Participant, I Have A Tribe, Nubus, Margie Lewis, SignA, Idiot Songs, Skelocrats, Tomorrows, Taste DJs, Somadrone, Lyttet, Leo Drezden and Lasertom.

Also featuring on that stage, kicking off the Saturday and Sunday will be Vinyl Love, where DJs and musicians alike will be playing selections from their 7″ collection.

Posted on May 28th, 2015

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Planet Parade were up there with one of my favourite Irish bands last year. They reappeared with new music after four years away and through a series of singles, they established an entirely new sound to the one of old.

That new electronically-charged billowing synth indie sound they’ve developed is heard once again on the new song ‘Cardiac’, with a video that features three masked dancers.

Posted on March 10th, 2015

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Minimum Maximum in Block-T on Friday night was one of the best Nialler9 gigs yet. The no advance warning on the lineup made for a special occasion and our limited capacity was sold out by 9pm as the first band took to the stage.

That band, Planet Parade, played their first gig in four years with a six-piece that showcased a new sound that traced a line between electronics and indie. It was an impressive performance of confidence and musicianship; with the recently featured songs sounding fully formed and another closing track, featuring a Paul Simon summery vibe.

In the middle, there was an energetic performance from a Limerick rap group that have put on two of the best sets I’ve seen this year. Friday night was another one. God Knows + Mynameisjohn were a high-flying, high-kicking, never-resting, fast-spitting, hype-getting, crowd-moving, always-giving joy. Check out their Rusangano Family album, one of the best of the year.

Despite a visit from the guards to the venue, who kept the party on hold for a while, we continued with a set from a band who last played to thousands of people at Electric Picnic. Le Galaxie showed how far they’ve come with a set of all new songs, which are growing in stature before they’re released. It was a powerhouse of a set, and watching them from so close up, it was fascinating to see just how good of a band they’ve come over the years. So much fun. You can win tickets to their next Dublin gig here.

Thanks to all who came down and trusted in the secret lineup experience. Special thanks to Grace, Dave, Laura, Nick, Susan, John, Stefano and all of the crew in Block-T for being such a sound bunch of people to work with. Check back here for more Minimum Maximum events in the near future or on the Facebook page. Photos by Colm Moore.

Posted on September 29th, 2014

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Planet Parade continue their impressive song resurgence with their first single proper – a shadowy night-time grower of ‘You’ll Be Sorry’.

While they first appeared in 2009 as a much more indie-rock affair, Michael Hopkins & Andrew Lloyd have spent four years working on their music, and have come up with a more nuanced mature and individual sound. The band play a rare live set on Friday September 26th, tbc

Posted on September 16th, 2014

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Hard Working Class Heroes today unveiled 100+ artists who will play the festival’s 12th year in Dublin from Thursday October 2nd – Sunday October 4th. This year the festival is sponsored by HMV Ireland and as is now established will feature a conference taking in mentoring, panels, advice and involvement from the tech space.

500 bands applied for the festival this year and they were judged by music people at home and abroad (including me).

Here is the list of bands that will play this year. Deeper delving into the lineup will commence here in September.

The bands

A Lazarus Soul
Acrobat
Affleck
Arborist
Atriums
Benihana
Benny smiles
Brian Casey
Buffalo Sunn
Buffalo Woman
Carriages
Carried By Waves
Cfit
Ciaran Lavery
Cloud Castle Lake
Clu
Codai
Color Sound
Columbia Mills
Conor Walsh
Contour
Deaf Joe
Dear Desert
Death In The Sickroom
Dogs
Dott
DVO Marvell
Eamon bode
Elaine Mai
Elastic Sleep
Elephant
Eoin Dolan
Fallen Rule
Floor Staff
Florence Olivier
Frankenstein Bolts
Galants
Ghost Estates
God Knows + mynameisjOhn
Grim
Hags
Hare Squead
Hauer
Hawk
His New Atlas
Hugh Hick
I have a tribe
I’m Your Vinyl
Imploded View
Jet Setter
Kobina
Kormac
little xs for eyes
Liza Flume
Low Sea
Maija Sofia
Maud in Cahoots
Me & My Dog
Me Auld Flower
Meltybrains?
Mere Moths
MKAI
moossmann
Myles Manley
Neon Atlas
Old Hannah
Otherkin
Paddy Hanna
Participant
Planet Parade
Princess
Red Queen Contest
Replete
Satori Je
Silences
Sisters
Skelocrats
Sleep Mc Evox
Somerville
Spies
Subplots
Tell No Foxx
The Academic
The Bedroom
The Black Sea Fleet
The Boxing Plot
The Clameens
The Debutantes
The Hard Ground
The Late David Turpin
The Loafing Heroes
The Magpies
The Pale
The Run Ons
The Shaker Hymn
The Statics
The Vincent(s)
Tino Ras
Val Normal
Vann Music
Voids
Walpurgis Family
Wild Promises
Yes Cadets

Venues

The Button Factory, The Workmans Club, The Mercantile, The Twisted Pepper, Bad Bobs, The Grand Social, Meeting House Square.

Tickets

Weekend Tickets €45 + fees, Nightly Tickets €20
http://entertainment.ie/hwch14.

HWCH is also supported by The Arts Council, Failte Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and the NDRC.

Posted on August 13th, 2014

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The tracks:

  1. The Gloaming – ‘Sailor’s Bonnet’ (live)
  2. Hundred Waters – ‘Down From The Rafters’
  3. Jungle – ‘Busy Earnin’
  4. Shlohmo and Jeremih – ‘No More’
  5. St. Vincent – ‘Prince Johnny’
  6. New Jackson – ‘Satisfaction’
  7. Seven Davis Jr. – ‘P.A.R.T.Y.’
  8. Angel Olsen – ‘White Fire’
  9. Kelela – ‘The High’
  10. Gary Low – ‘I Want You
  11. Hozier – ‘From Eden’
  12. Villagers – ‘Occupy Your Mind’
  13. Tensnake & Jacques Lu Cont – ‘Feel Of Love’ ft. Jamie Lidell
  14. Psychemagik – ‘What A Funky Night’ 
  15. Isiaih Rashad – ‘Soliloquy’
  16. The Juan Maclean – ‘Get Down (With My Love)’
  17. Blooms – ‘Skin’
  18. Jay Daniel – ‘Royal Insanity’
  19. Little Dragon – ‘Klapp Klapp’
  20. Solar Bears –  ‘Interzone’
  21. We Cut Corners – ‘Best Friend’
  22. We Are Shining – ‘Killing’
  23. Sleep Thieves – ‘City Of Hearts’ 
  24. Lorde – Ribs (Let’s Have A Sleepover Version) (Ryan Hemsworth Remix)
  25. Kiesza – ‘Hideaway’
  26. Planet Parade – ‘Prick’
  27. LIZ – ‘All Them Boys’
  28. Salt Ashes – ‘Little Dove’
  29. Broods – ‘Never Gonna Change’
  30. Glass Animals – ‘Gooey’

Posted on March 3rd, 2014

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Kildare duo Michael Hopkins and Andrew Lloyd, Planet Parade, released a couple of EPs of taut indie music back in 2009/2010. Four years is a long time in music and the musical partnership have been pursuing even more lithe song arrangements of late, quietly slipping out two tracks that showcased a very different sound.

Those songs, recorded in their apartment in Maynooth, ‘Prick’ and ‘You And The Devil’ are gentle, intimate affairs. ‘Prick’ unlike the title is a slow rolling track that uses its synth, guitar and drum machine base as a mood-setter for the hushed vocals that doesn’t disturb but will get under your skin. ‘You And The Devil’ is equally hushed and reminscent of inc.’s no world album.

Hopkins and Lloyd say there’s no plans for any releases and that these two songs are out in the world now to see what happens with a view to doing some live shows down the line. More songs are forthcoming.


Posted on February 18th, 2014

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