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.

Thursday | Friday | Saturday

1. God Knows + Myname Is John


Energetic talented Limerick rap trio.

Thursday October 2 – 10pm @ The Button Factory

Anyone who witnessed these two Limerick MCs (Murly goes untitled for now) live and producer John Lillis, like last Friday night’s Minimum Maximum Block-T show has felt the relentless energy of their music: an all-moving, all-interacting proper show. Plus, they have released one of the best Irish albums this year too.

2. Planet Parade


Kildare band return with a rich new sound

Thursday October 2 – 8.45pm @ Meeting House Square

Michael Hopkins and Andrew Lloyd played their first gig in four years with four band members last Friday with us and  showcased a new sound that traced a line between electronics and indie with rich songcraft and confident style. They used to sound more like The Police, now they sound more like they’re own thing.


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
Benny smiles
Brian Casey
Buffalo Sunn
Buffalo Woman
Carried By Waves
Ciaran Lavery
Cloud Castle Lake
Color Sound
Columbia Mills
Conor Walsh
Deaf Joe
Dear Desert
Death In The Sickroom
DVO Marvell
Eamon bode
Elaine Mai
Elastic Sleep
Eoin Dolan
Fallen Rule
Floor Staff
Florence Olivier
Frankenstein Bolts
Ghost Estates
God Knows + mynameisjOhn
Hare Squead
His New Atlas
Hugh Hick
I have a tribe
I’m Your Vinyl
Imploded View
Jet Setter
little xs for eyes
Liza Flume
Low Sea
Maija Sofia
Maud in Cahoots
Me & My Dog
Me Auld Flower
Mere Moths
Myles Manley
Neon Atlas
Old Hannah
Paddy Hanna
Planet Parade
Red Queen Contest
Satori Je
Sleep Mc Evox
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
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.


Weekend Tickets €45 + fees, Nightly Tickets €20

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

Posted on August 13th, 2014


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Update: Last five days to enter.

As Hard Working Class Heroes goes into its twelfth year, the festival for new bands is now also becoming established as for new technology too.

With HMV sponsoring the festival, taking place from Thursday October 2nd to Saturday October 4th, the festival has issued an open call for applications from bands and tech companies.

Musicians can apply to play at the weekend’s gigs where there are opportunities to play in front of international and local industry professionals from bookers to managers to label owners to publishing etc.

Tech companies can apply to become one of a limited number of start-ups who get to to pitch to venture capitals and investors as well as mentoring and panels.

Closing date for both applications is July 16.

HMV will be doing pop-up shops featuring releases by participating bands as well as workshops offering advice on how their business can help bands.

For everyone else, tickets are available now for the weekend at €35 plus fees until July 16th.

Posted on July 11th, 2014




So Hard Working Class Heroes is happening from Thursday to Saturday and 100 Irish bands are playing live in seven different venues at night and some other shops, cafés and restaurants during the day to local music enthusiasts and an international audience of industry people. As a reader of this site, you’ll already know lots of bands to check out (the entire music industry will be at Hozier for example, while I Have A Tribe, Sleep Thieves, Come On Live Long, Daithí, Ships, Lasertom, Liza Flume and Tieranniesaur are good bets).

So I thought it’d be fun (yes, this counts as one of my definitions of fun) to write about 12 bands playing the festival I’ve never featured before. So I trawled through the entire list of bands, including the 70 first-timers and this is what I came up with. Also, I’ll be DJing the afterparty at Meeting House Square on Saturday about half past midnight FYI.

12 brand new bands to see at Hard Working Class Heroes… →

Posted on October 2nd, 2013


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Hard Working Class Heroes have announced the 101 bands lined up for the festival later this year from Thursday 3rd – Saturday 5th October in various venues in Dublin. Full artist links for listening from the site. There are 70 bands who’ve never played HWCH before this time around:


Affleck / Anderson / Benny Smiles / Biggles Flys Again / Blades Club! / Bouts / Carriages / CARRIED BY WAVES / Cat Dowling / Cave Ghosts / Cfit / CLU / Come On Live Long / Conor Walsh / Cove / croupier / Daithi / Death In The Sickroom / DOGS / Dott / Dylan Tighe / Elaine Mai / Elastic Sleep / Fallen Rule / Fears / Floor Staff / Frankenstein Bolts / Garret Moore / Ghosts / Gorgeous Colours / GRIM / Groom / Halves / Haüer / Hozier / I <3 The Monster Hero / I HAVE A TRIBE / I’m Your Vinyl / Inni-K / Jet Setter / Jethro Pickett / John Cathal O’Brien / Joshua Burnside / Julie Hawk / KaraKara / Kobina / Las KELLIES / Lasertom / Leanne Harte / Let’s Set Sail / Lie Ins / Little Rivers / little xs for eyes / Liza Flume / Maria Somerville / Mark Geary / Maud In Cahoots / Myles Manley / NANU NANU / Niall Colfer / Overhead, The Albatross / PLUTONIC DUST / PRINCESS / Rachel Boyd / REID / REPLETE / RYAN VAIL / September Girls / Ships / Silences / Silverbacks / Skelocrats / SLEEP MCEVOX / Sleep Thieves / So Cow / Spies / Sweet Jane / Swimmers / swords / Tandem Felix / TELL NO FOXX / The Altered Hours / The Boxing Plot / The Clameens / The Crayon Set / The Dying Seconds / the Freakles / The Hard Ground / The Heads Of State / THE LATE DAVID TURPIN / The Manhattan Syndrome / The Notas / The Pale / The Vincent(s) / The Young Folk / Thinkerrs / This Side Up / tieranniesaur / UNKNOWN / Wild Promises / windings


Posted on August 16th, 2013



Hard Working Class Heroes, the annual showcase of new Irish music is now in its eleventh year and has issued a last call for bands and tech companies.

Hard Working Class Heroes will close its submission process on Friday July 26th for both bands and tech for this year’s edition due to take place  Thursday 3rd – Saturday 5th October in Dublin. The annual showcase of new Irish music is now in its eleventh year and features around 100 Irish bands playing around a five or six venues in Dublin city and HWCH fly in industry people like festival bookers, agents, managers and more to get their first glimpse at what’s happening here. There’s also panels, discussions and speed sessions for bands to learn more about the modern music landscape.
This year, for the first time HWCH Digital is  aiming to get 25 tech companies involved in the music space and give them access to all of the above for the benefit of both strands of industry.

Bands and tech companies can apply at the HWCH site. Once entered, the applications will be judged by a both national and international music people including myself.

Posted on July 23rd, 2013




: Image of the timetable to print.

All daytime panels and talks are free.

The times and details of the versus nights at Hard Working Class Heroes (HWCH) from the 4th to the 6th of October are out. Nialler9 vs. Jim Carroll On The Record is back for a third year on the Friday night in the Workman’s. The lineup for that is Forrests, Elaine Mai, Simon Bird, Kool Thing, Girl Band, Come On Live Long and Ships while there’s also an international pow wow with The Hype Machine vs. Soundcloud night and Today FM (Paul McLoone) vs 2FM (Jenny Huston in her last involvement as a 2Fm DJ).

There’s also some Returning Heroes with 5 bands regarded by the organisers as those which “epitomise a central tenet of the HWCH festival: offering Irish audiences an early snapshot of emerging artists who are destined to become some of Ireland’s most enduring talents.” They are Solar Bears, Le Galaxie, Delorentos all playing Meeting House Square each night (now a proper venue as witnessed at Efterklang over the weekend) with We Cut Corners and The Ambience Affair playing Button Factory.

Full details…

Posted on October 5th, 2012




Update: Stage times.

Hard Working Class Heroes (HWCH) has announced the bands playing the festival this year for their 10th birthday from the Thursday 4th to Saturday 6th October in The Button Factory, The Mercantile, The Grand Social, Twisted Pepper, Meeting House Square and The Workman’s Club. The full list of bands is below with links where you can do your homework.

Five I’ve yet to see but want to: CLU, Eatenbybears, Ghosts, A Dark Horse and Faws.

Also: Forrests but they’ve yet to play a gig.

Five I’ve seen but you should if you haven’t already: Come On Live Long, Young Wonder, Ships, Ginnels and White Collar Boy.

Incidentally, I was one of the judges for about 20 bands and one discovery I made which didn’t make it in was Max Zaska’s Groove, a weird funk band that completely threw me off.
Full band list..

Posted on August 15th, 2012