Northern Irish artist Lilla Vargen has this past few months, burst into life with her live performances and a debut single. It has been a most welcome activity as the song and shows have resonated and she’s not ready to stop there.
Majical Cloudz’s ‘Downtown’ is already a devastatingly effective song in the hand’s of the now defunct Canadian duo. Lilla Vargen’s version doesn’t change much of the original’s as it doesn’t need much work. Instead, she heightens the song’s backing arrangements and sings the song in her own way. She plays for us next Thursday evening in Bello Bar alongside Jafaris and Sleep Thieves at Future Proof.
Molly Sterling – Plain Static
Tipperary singer Molly Sterling, is a 19 year-old who has been trekking her own creative path for a number of years and it feels like it’s now finding a place of resonance.
Her latest single is a piano-lead ballad based wholly in reality and all its flaws, that has intimacy in its construction and one that Sterling sings of her body “is not just feast for eyes / it’s a home / a prison / a craft / all at the same time ” and explores how her mind and body are interlinked in reaction to external forces.
The Lost Brothers – Echoes In The Wind
The finest harmonic folk singers in the style of The Everly Brothers in the country, Oisin Leech and Mark McCausland return to calm our nerves with thee first single from their forthcoming fifth album Halfway Towards A Healing out 26th January next year.
And So I Watch You From Afar – Dying Giants
A highlight from the Belfast band’s fifth album The Endless Shimmering is the sound of them doing what they do best, bludgeoning the competition with big rock moves counteracted with pretty little riffs.
Autre Monde – Leuctra
Autre Monde’s debut EP, which is released today on Popical Island, digs deeper than their first ’80s rock and post-punk references for a “murkier” sound, darker in tone with bands such as Can, Total Control and John Foxx namecheckd. ‘Leuctra’ has that John Maus-esque synth ambience for sure.
Autumns – You’re A Right Useless Cunt Aren’t You
It’s been a number of years since we heard from Derry artist Christian Donaghey and last time, that was more in the vein of jangly noise rock. Now, Autumns sounds like industrial techno a la Factory Floor and has a great title to boot. His Dyslexia Tracks EP is out on Touch Sensitive Friday.
Áine Cahill – Blood Diamonds
The Cavan singer celebrates signing to Warner Music with a track produced by Courage (who has produced Ray Blk). This is the most modern sound that Aine has displayed thus far.
Elephant – Time Will Tell
Dundalk man Shane Clarke has been embracing a more layered sound of late moving away from his debut of finger-plucked music and his new music has more of a starry-eyed celestial vibe in the vein of Bowie at times. The video for new song ‘Time Will Tell’ asked 28 local artists to take one word from each line of the song and represent it how they wished.
Leigh Michael – Cosmic Couch’
From Leigh Michael’s new Cosmic Couch EP produced by Staz comes this tongue-twisting rap track highlight. Leigh has a Youtube channel with rap tutorials.
The Academic – Permanent Vacation
After their looped music video took on a large viral lift (more on that here), the Mullingar indie popper announced their debut album Tales From The Backseat for January 12th 2018 with new single ‘Permanent Vacation’. The album was recorded in LA with producer Tim Pagnotta (Dreamcar, Walk The Moon, Saint Motel). Their gig in Vicar Street this Saturday is a sellout.
For a video of their latest single ‘Bear Claws’, Mullingar’s The Academic came up with an idea that OK Go would have been proud to do.
Using Facebook Live, the band figured they could use the slight delay/ lag in actually going live to create loops in which to build the song into a looped and stacked live version of the song. A brilliant idea.
Here’s how: We rearranged each instrument on “Bear Claws” to fit Facebook Live’s delay, with each loop getting more complex, adding instruments, rhythms, and melodies. Additionally, by projecting the video live from a soundstage we created an infinite tunnel consisting of all the previously recorded loops. Hope you guys like it!
I spent a lot of time writing about SZA thisweek and this song keeps coming back to my ears.
Felix Pallas – ‘Similarities’
A Belgian band who are our blog friend Disco Naivete’s first release as a label, ‘Similarities’ is a sheenful dance-pop track rooted in full-band dynamics that reaches unexpected peaks.
The Academic – ‘Bear Claws’
The Mullingar band have re-recorded the song that turned everyone’s heads a few years back. This tighter version of the singalong indie-pop song is tighter and comes from the band’s debut album to come.
Shay Lia – What’s Your Problem?
Kaytranada on the beat and Shay Lia on the R&B low-end flow.
Skepta – ‘Hypocrisy’
“They try to disrespect me / When they’re online especially /But everything cool when they check me / Because I’m so cool and deadly / See, I had to realise slowly / That nobody actually knows me/ Yeah, man, I’ve got fifteen different iPhones / But I am so not phoney.” Skepta, true to form. He declined some amazing dinners and an MBE apparently.
Shabazz Palaces – ‘When Cats Claw’
Extraterrestial alt-rap group Shabazz Palaces will release two albums next Friday : Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star and Quazarz vs The Jealous Machines but until that overload arrives drink in ‘When Cats Claw’, a echo chambering track.
Four Tet – Two Thousand And Seventeen’
Kieran Hebden returns to the relative calm of his early work with this minimally-pitched track that lets a string instrument become the main focus.
The music industry showcases continue to roll on with Eurosonic in Gronigen in Holland and SXSW in Austin Texas coming up in January and March respectively.
As part of the second wave of announcements for SXSW, Rusangano Family, Girls Names, Enemies, Saint Sister and September Girls are in there among the international acts like Nao, Autre Ne Veut, Pixx, Mercury Rev, Blanck Mass, Ezra Furman, Menace Beach and Vant. The whopper Spotify playlist for all of them is here.
The Academic and Rosie Carney were previously announced.
For Eurosonic, the entire Irish contingent via the Music From Ireland party has been revealed and it features: Marc O’Reilly, Rusangano Family, Pleasure Beach, The Academic, Otherkin, The Hot Sprockets, Colm Mac Con Iomaire and The Young Folk.
These acts will be abroad looking to make moves to benefit their careers.
Following last week’s preliminary announcement of Richard Hawley, Lapsley and more for Other Voices this year, the TV show and event in Dingle between Friday 4th – Sunday 6th of December, has announced more this week.
Making their trip to the main room at St. James Church also are:
Low, Jack Garrett, Keaton Henson, Glen Hansard and The Academic.
The Irish acts of the IMRO Other Room are: Gavin Glass, Saint Sister, Talos, Bitch Falcon, Hawk with another TBC from the viewer’s choice from the open call.
For those heading to Dingle for the weekend, who may not get tickets, fear not, there’s a load of music happening for free in the pubs and venues of the town as the CPL Music Trail is back with 45 live acts including:
David Kitt, Sorcha Ni Bhriain, Declan McLoughlin, My Tribe Your Tribe, Eve Belle Mongoose, Chanele McGuinness, Hannah McPhilimy, Johnny Stewart , Hare Squead, Marc O’Reilly, Rusangano Family, Conor Walsh, Shookrah, Chapter 2, Slow Moving Clouds, Maria Kelly, Sample Answer, Callum Orr, Bad Sea, MKAI and Rebecca Collins
Mullingar band The Academic have been on my radar since December 2013 and the release of ‘Bear Claws’ . Things took off for the four lads with the release of ‘Different’ earlier this year which was picked up by radio nationwide and in the UK too, meaning there are many more ears trained on what’s coming next.
‘Northern Boy’ is the that next impressive single for the band – a melodic guitar track that swells with a buildup of sonics and backing vocals that matches its message of encouragement in love.
Sea Sessions Surf & Music Festival happens this weekend in Bundoran, rechristened Fundoran for those who make the trip to the edge of The Atlantic to what will probably be a sunny haven of surf, sand and tunes. Here’s my guide for who to catch at the festival and if you want more on Sea Sessions hit Vodafone Centre Stage, your festival resource this summer for news, tickets and performances all summer long.
So how about taking the hassle out of who to see? Just follow Nialler9’s guide.
The drummer from Kilkenny is much more than that one-man job as Jeremy Hickey does it all – makes the music, produces the tracks and plays it all. Live, he stays behind his drumkit flanked by visuals of his virtual self and still manages to look like he’s doing everything all at once. It’s that workmanship that has got him noticed by the likes of Bo’Tox and Xavier de Rosnay of Justice in France as the go-to guy for live beats.
There aren’t many classic rock’n’roll bands around these days but these Dubliners are definitely in the top tier of the pack with their visceral take on garage rock and rock’n’roll. Second album Live Well, Change Often saw the band become a European tour staple picking up fans across the continent along the way. As a result, these lads are primed and ready to give you a sweaty rock show at all times.
The Great Escape has announced its last 150 bands (150) bands for the new music festival in Brighton from May 14th-16th to add to this list.
Highlights include Ciaran Lavery, Empress Of, Float Fall, Gaz Coombes, Lion Babe, Klo, Landshapes, Mick Jenkins, The Academic, Skepta and Rhodes.
A.O.S.O.O.N / Acid Arab / Ady Suleiman / Afrikan Boy / Akcadamy / Al Bairre / Allusondrugs / Andreas Moe / Arborist / Astronomyy / Baby Queens / Bad Weed / Baxter Dury / Beach Baby / Bill Ryder Jones / Blanck Mass / Blaue Blume / Bonkaz / Brika / Bristol / C. Duncan / Cape Cub / Casi / Cc Smugglers / Chilli And The Whalekillers / Ciaran Lavery / Daisy Victoria / Dan Owen / Daudi Matsiko / Dj Nature / Duke Garwood / Elias / Empress Of / English Heretic / Fekky / Feverist / Fickle Friends / Float Fall / Francisco The Man / Furs / Gabi / Gaz Coombes / Georgia / Get Inuit / Gramotones / Hannah Lou Clark / Hein Cooper / Ho99O9 / Hollysiz / Hooton Tennis Club / Hyena / Indigo Face / Jack Robert Hardman / Jamie Lawson / Jane Weaver / Jeanne Added / Jeremy? / Jerry Williams / Jesse Sheehan / Jme / Joe Dolman / Jpnsgrls / Julia Marcell / Junius Meyvant / K.I.D / Kelvin Jones / Klara Ketelaars / Klo / Kuenta I Tambu / Landshapes / Liberto Wolf / Lily Rendle-Moore / Lion Babe / Lloyd Yates / Lonely The Brave / Loris / Miamigo / Mick Jenkins / Mile Me Deaf / Model Aeroplanes / Mugwump / Nah / Neon Saturdays / New City Kings / Ngod / Ocean Wisdom / Okmalumkoolkat / Ólah Bliss / Oliver Daldry / Olivier Heim / Optical / P.H. Fat / Palace / Plastic Mermaids / Queen Kwong / Raye / Rebecca Clements / Rhodes / Ria Mae / Rob Finlay / Robyn Sherwell / Rory Indiana / Sabella / Sasha Siem / Say Yes Dog / Saycet / Scarlet Rascal / Sg Lewis / Shopping / Skepta / Slug / Sonar Soul / Spring King / Stal / Sunflower Bean / Sykes / Tama Sumo / The Academic / The Accidentals / The Big Bluff / The Cribs / The Mispers / The Moon / The One Hundred / The Strypes / The Vryll Society / Thor Rixon / Tkay Maidza / Tor Miller / Tora / Triana Park / Tropics / Tusks / Versus You / Warm Graves / Whilk And Misky / White / Wyles & Simpson / Yorke / Young Kato / Young Romance / Yung / Zak Abel / Zibra / Ωracles
Barn Dance Festival, now BD Festival happens on Good Friday one-day festival in Glendalough House, Co. Wicklow on April 3rd.
Today, they added Jape, The Academic, Hare Squead (who rocked our Paddy’s Day Unlocked event), Discopunks, Brian Deady, Together Disco’s Confession Session, Heroes In Hiding, Mode 1 + Lee Kelly, Dave O’Sullivan, Pusher, Lerosa, Mulljoy, Kaily, Room 19, All City DJs, This Greedy Pig, Southpaw, Shake, The Raid, The Malibu Club and Shane Linehan.
That adds to the existing lineup: Leftfield DJ set, Benoit & Sergio, Ben Sims, Omar S, Mundy , Hot Sprockets, Smash Hits, Eskies, Jay Daniel, Frank B, Interskalactic
There will also be a Whelan’s Main Stage, Together Disco, Abstract Dance Arena, Subject Forest Stage, gastronomic feasts and visual arts. Tickets are €60 + fee from bdfestival.ie, tickets.ie and retail outlets nationwide.
As for getting there: A bus service will run from Custom House Quay from 3pm and every 30 minutes thereafter with tickets priced from €10 on the website, return bus tickets must be purchased in advance or on entry. Limited parking will be available along with a taxi drop off point.
Mullingar’s The Academic were one of the best live bands I saw last year on my four week stint around Ireland for Guinness Amplify.
The four lads consisting of Craig Fitzgerald, Dean Gavin, Stephen Murtagh and Matt Murtagh also left a big impression with their debut single ‘Bear Claws’ and they’ll hope to keep it up with their debut four-track EP released on April 24th.
‘Different’, the first track from it is a tightly-played three-minute indie-rock pop track, effortlessly sauntering around your ears in a melodic and pleasing fashion.
From Thursday to Saturday this week, seven venues will be occupied by 104 Irish bands playing the Hard Working Class Heroes festival playing to music fans, interested parties, industry delegates, bands, friends and all sorts. There are free daytime gigs, a convention in the Liberties speed sessions, panels, tech companies, talks and much much more. Tickets are €20 per day or €45 for the three days. It’s one of my favourite weekends in Dublin of the year. There’s a great buzz about.
Here are 18 new bands to see this weekend, I kept it strictly to bands that have not released a debut album yet. Enjoy.
A new band formed from Futures Apart and Hush War Cry, the twosongs so far featuring production from Darragh Nolan have suggested an elegance and a quality in the arrangement and songwriting of these Wild Beasts-style ’80s throwback synth pop tracks. ‘Give It Up’ is a particularly exciting track.
Thursday Oct 2 10.40 @ Bad Bob’s / 1pm @ Jo Burger
Dublin singer Gavin Farrell is still in early days but citing Perfume Genius and Youth Lagoon as two influences on his bedroom folk pop has me intrigued. He’s just released his debut EP tell me we both matter, don’t we?
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.
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
The Button Factory, The Workmans Club, The Mercantile, The Twisted Pepper, Bad Bobs, The Grand Social, Meeting House Square.