BBC Radio Ulster’s Across The Line is the best radio show showcasing new Irish music from across the island. It’s a fine example of the exact thing that RTÉ is missing from its schedule – foundational support for emerging music in the Republic (shameful really). It’s currently presented by Rigsy and Stuart Bailie and I contribute to it every 4-6 weeks, as I did last Monday.

Across The Line started as The Bottom Line in September 1986 and 30 years later as Across The Line, it’s still championing Irish music and to mark the occasion, there will be a special gig on Monday September 5th at Ulster Hall, doubling as a broadcast that will feature live performances and interviews with SOAK, Therapy?, Villagers (acoustic), R51 and Saint Sister with more TBA.

Audiences can apply for tickets to this special concert – they will be allocated through a random draw and applications can be made until Monday 1 August at 4pm. Tickets will be limited to two per person.

The event will be broadcast live on BBC Radio Ulster from 8pm-10pm and streamed live on bbc.co.uk/radioulster

Rigsy says: “I was practically reared on ATL, with Mike Edgar introducing me to so much amazing Irish music throughout the 90s. So, it’s a real privilege to be presenting the show these days alongside Stu Bailie – and to be involved in this 30th anniversary celebration gig. As is always the case with ATL – we’ve a mix of huge success stories and exciting, box-fresh bands we’ve only recently discovered. It should make for another truly special and memorable night – which it would need to be in order to mark such a momentous milestone!”

Stuart Bailie says: “ATL and The Bottom Line have been a great source of my musical education. I remember the days of Davy Sims and Mike Edgar with fondness and it’s been an honour to have become part of that fearless story. So many excellent artists have been nurtured, supported and promoted to the wider world and the Ulster Hall gig will see some of that love being returned by the acts. I’m sure that will be reflected in the audience response also, while I’m looking forward to an ATL team reunion – a top collection of professionals, music devotees and mavericks.”

Posted on July 26th, 2016


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The programme for the Kilkenny Arts Festival to take place from 5th to 14th of August this year has been announced.

The 43rd edition will include a celebration of Mozart across 15 concerts, The Marble City Sessions (St. Canice’s Cathedral, Sunday 14 August) – hosted and co-curated by Martin Hayes, writer Paul Muldoon and actor Stephen Rea but of interest to Nialler9 readers are shows from Villagers (Sunday August 7th @ Set Theatre ), Icelandic electro-pop band FM Belfast (Saturday 6 August @ Set Theatre), folk band The Unthanks (Saturday August 13 @ Set Theatre) and Sam Lee (Friday 5 August @ Set Theatre) among them.

See the full programme at kilkennyarts.ie

Posted on June 15th, 2016


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The Galway International Arts Festival announced its lineup of music this week and it includes some shows of interest including Villagers, BellX1, Dan Deacon, Pleasure Beach, Optimo, Suede and others.

July 13: Popical Island vs Citóg Records @ Róisín Dubh (€10/€12.50)

July 13, 14, 18 & 20: Vinyl Hours @ Festival Club (Free) – Festival artists reveal their most treasured
 vinyl memories

July 14: Pleasure Beach, Orchid Collective @ Roisin Dubh (€10/€12.50)

July 14: King Kong Company @ Roisin Dubh (€18/€20, late show)

July 15: Optimo @ Electric (€5/€10)

July 15: Stomptown Brass @ Monroe’s Live (€10/€12)

July 15: Elvis Costello And The Imposters @ The Absolut Big Top (€49.50)

July 16: The SoulJazz Orchestra @ Roisin Dubh (€22/€24)

July 16: BellX1, The Academic @ The Absolut Big Top (€35)

July 19: Villagers with special guest Mick Flannery @ The Absolut Big Top (€33.50)

July 21: Tama Sumo @ Electric (€5/€10)

July 21/22: Dan Deacon @ Roisin Dubh (€22.50/€25)

July 22: God Is An Astronaut @ Roisin Dubh (€16/€18)

July 22: The Gloaming @ The Absolut Big Top (€39.50)

July 23: Daithí, Mmoths, Toby Kaar @ Róisín Dubh (€14–€16)

July 23: Nightmares on Wax, DJ Stingray, 313 & Sleazy McQueen @ Electric (€10)

July 23: Suede @ The Absolut Big Top (€45)

July 24th: Brian Deady @ Roisin Dubh (€16/18)

Posted on May 24th, 2016


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Congrats are due to Villagers‘ Conor O’Brien who was given an Ivor Novello songwriting award today for the pretiguous Album Award for his Darling Arithmetic release last year.

Conor previously won a Novello for Best Song Musically and Lyrically’ in 2011 for ‘Becoming A Jackal’.

Other winners include Snakehips for ‘All My Friends’ for Best Contemporary Song, David Holmes for Best Television Soundtrack for his work on London Spy soundtrack, Lifetime Achievement went to Damon Albarn and Portishead were awarded the PRS for Music Outstanding Contribution to British Music.

Conor is working on the followup, to be his fourth album but there are plenty of live dates ahead this year.

Villagers live dates

Thurs 26-Sat 28th May – Freak Valley Festival, Siegen, Germany
Fri 1st July – Vida Festival, Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain
Fri 1st-Sun 3rd July – Castlepalooza, Laois, Ireland
Thurs 14th July – Super Bock Super Rock, Lisbon
Sat 16th July – Colours of Ostrava, Ostrava, Czech Republic
Tues 19th July – Festival Big Top, Galway
Sat 23rd July – Le Poisson Rouge, New York
Sun 24th July – Newport Folk Festival, Newport, RI
Fri 26th August – Purbeck Valley Folk Festival, Swanage

Posted on May 19th, 2016




A roundup of recent gig announcements.

Other recent announcements including Dublin City Block Party and more in the news section.

Texas alt-rockers White Denim play Whelan’s on Tuesday 16th August. New album Stiff is a return to form. Tickets €18.50+fees on sale now. They also play Belfast’s Limelight the night after.

Rising pop star Dua Lipa plays The Academy Dublin on Wednesday October 5th. Tickets are €22.90 +fees on sale Friday at 9am.

Villagers and Mick Flannery will share a bill at the Galway International Arts Festival this July 19th. Tickets on sale at roisindubh.net.

Other Voices have confirmed their first lineup for their stage at Electric Picnic at Stradbally Hall, Co. Laois from 2nd – 4th September. They include Le Galaxie, Karl Blau, Saint Sister, Julia Jacklin, Margaret Glaspy, Jalen N’Gonda and Dr. Dog.

Music Network have confirmed a lineup of acts for Body & Soul Festival’s Woodlands Stage. The lineup will focus on contemporary, improv and classical and feature Séamus Begley with Catriona McKay and Chris Stout, OKO, Christine Tobin, Bangers and Crash percussion trio, The Carducci Quartet; Máirtín O’Connor, fiddle player Zoë Conway and guitar and bouzouki player Donal Lunny.

Norwegian indie-pop band HighAsAKite play Whelan’s in Dublin on May 22nd.

Young Hearts Run Free are putting on a celebration of musician Gene Clark (ex-Byrds) on the 25th anniversary of his death on May 24th, upstairs in MVP. The night will feature:

  • Live performances of Gene Clark songs by Ross Hamer (Jetsetter), David Tapley (Tandem Felix), Tony Poole (Starry Eyed And Laughing), Anderson, Peter Smith (The Urges)
  • Reading and Q&A with author Johnny Rogan, the world’s foremost Byrds/Gene Clark scholar
  • Exclusive playback of unreleased, never-before-heard Gene Clark tracks
  • Excerpt from the documentary film ‘The Byrd Who Flew Alone’

Tickets are priced at €12 and are available in advance at Eventbrite.ie. This is a not-for-profit event and proceeds will be donated to the Dublin Simon Community.

New Dublin band Barq will launch their second single ‘That Thing You Love’ on May 29th upstairs in Whelan’s. Tickets €5 On Door. Here’s the impressive first single:

All Tvvins were confirmed for the support slot for the Foals gig at The Marquee in Cork this summer on July 5th.Tickets are €36 +fees available from Ticketmaster.

Hare Squead will support De La Soul at their Dublin Olympia Theatre gig on June 16th. Tickets are €40+fees.

Tickets are available from Ticketmaster.ie unless otherwise stated.

Posted on May 10th, 2016


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Castlepalooza today has announced a new partnership with Aiken Promotions for its 10th year that sees them bring in bigger names and move the festival from the August bank holiday weekend to Friday 1st – Sunday 3rd July.

On the way to a redesigned site at the haunted Charleville Castle in Tullamore this year are:

  • Caribou
  • Jurassic 5
  • Cat Power
  • Romare
  • Tiger & Woods
  • Alle Farben
  • Cian Nugent
  • Colm Mac Con Iomaire
  • Overhead, The Albatross
  • Somerville
  • Get Down Edits
  • The Altered Hours

That might be Castlepalooza’s best lineup yet on the strength of headliners alone.

Tickets are a bit more this year but are still a reasonable €134 + fees for the weekend with camping or €115 + fees for a weekend ticket. Tickets go on sale on Monday at 9am from Ticketmaster.

Posted on February 25th, 2016


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Villagers have a live album recorded in one day in London’s RAK Studio coming out this Friday called Where Have You Been All My Life?.

Following on from ‘Memoir’ debuted in October, a cover of the Jimmy Web /Glen Campbell song ‘Wichita Lineman’. The live album is released this Friday on Domino.

Listen on Spotify.

Where Have You Been All My Life? Tracklisting

1. Set the Tigers Free
2. Everything I Am is Yours
3. My Lighthouse
4. Courage
5. That Day
6. The Soul Serene
7. Memoir
8. Hot Scary Summer
9. The Waves
10. Darling Arithmetic
11. So Naive
12. Wichita Lineman

Posted on January 5th, 2016


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Best of 2015: Albums | Songs | Readers’ Albums | Videos | Readers’ Songs Readers’ Gigs, Clubs & DJs | Top 10 Lists | Nialler’s Irish choices

Readers’ Top 25 Irish songs of 2015

  1. Girl Band – Paul
  2. Jape – Séance Of Light
  3. Pleasure Beach – Go
  4. Bicep – Just
  5. Villagers – Hot Scary Summer
  6. All Tvvins – Darkest Ocean
  7. Girl Band – Pears For Lunch
  8. Le Galaxie – Put The Chain On
  9. Meltybrains? – The Vine
  10. Conor Walsh – The Front
  11. Talos – In Time
  12. No Monster Club – I’ve Retired
  13. Enemies – Play Fire
  14. Daithi – Mary Keane’s Introduction
  15. Villagers – Courage
  16. All Tvvins – Too Young To Live
  17. I Have A Tribe – Scandinavia
  18. Mmoths – Deu
  19. Bitch Falcon – TMJ
  20. Rejjie Snow – Blakkst Skn
  21. Jape – Ribbon, Ribbon, Ribbon
  22. Gavin James – Bitter Pill
  23. Rusangano Family – Heathrow
  24. Villagers – Everything I Am Is Yours
  25. Roisin Murphy – Evil Eyes

Spotify playlist

Youtube playlist

Soundcloud playlist

Posted on December 21st, 2015


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Last week, Other Voices debuted their new podcast with performances and interviews with Jape, Nathaniel Rateliff, The Unthanks and more.

The second episode is out now and features Villagers, Colm Mac Con Iomaire, Wyvern Lingo & The Academic in conversaton with Philip King or Anna Job. Listen to it right here and come back tomorrow for a ticket giveaway to Other Voices in Dingle in December.

The songs featured:
Villagers – Nothing Arrived & Dawning On Me
Colm Mac Con Iomaire – Farewell To The Sea
The Academic – Different
Wyvern Lingo – Letters To Willow

VillagersElectric PicnicWyvern LingoHozierThe AcademicLetters To willowThe FramesColm Mac Con IomaireDifferentDawning On Me

Posted on November 22nd, 2015


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