A lot of Irish music comes Nialler9’s way and there’s little time to feature everything we think is worthy of a thumbs up or more ears. Every week, we collate the songs that pass our writers that deserve to be heard by you. For more extensive Irish coverage, follow our Spotify playlist or hit up the Irish section.
Better 4 U
The Irish spoken-word & R&B artist returns with a sharp new single. There’s a real experimental R&B edge to this one, hear mostly in the vocals. Dunleavy’s love affair with contemporary electronica is crystal clear – some very icy synth tones give ‘Better 4 U’ a real edge. The visuals, shot mostly around the Dublin coastline, are superb.
Ex Hot Sprockets man Wayne continues to offer exciting new material under his new solo venture with ‘Transcend’. The song details Wayne’s experience with depression and the medication prescribed to treat it. It’s a cloudy indie-psych number, a vibe that reminds me of the first Broken Bells record.
My Babys Dead
Cork-based Elaine Malone dabbles strongly in blues-rock idioms on new single ‘My Baby’s Dead’. The track has an eerie, ghostly quality emanating from Malone’s very menacing vocal performance. The arrangement places fuzzy guitars playing chords and squealing lead against a rock solid rhythm section. The veil of reverb applied to the master gives the song a washed out, burnt out cool we really dig.
Caleb & Walshy
British/Irish hip-hop duo Caleb & Walshey aren’t resting on their laurels following the release of their Terminal 27 mixtape. Their new single ‘Suburban Landslide’ retains that same mellowed out delivery and soul inspired production, even if the themes presented are a lot darker.
Swimming Through The Night
New indie group Soda Blonde offer listeners a little bit more insight into what they’re about with new single ‘Swimming Through The Night’. This melancholy tune gives plenty by way of cinematic arrangements. Synths, guitars and vocals all interweave to make for a compelling wall of sound type listening experience.
Got To Move On
Session musician Thomas Garnett’s debut single under solo moniker Abbacaxi is sun-drenched, jazz influenced and packed with tight grooves. ‘Got To Move On’ boasts that new breed of jazzy-dance music the likes of Tom Misch has championed. Self-described as “Guitar music for house fans”.
If We Could Build
James Strain ,aka Auxiliary Phoenix, recently released his If We Could Build EP under Wriggle Records. We’ve highlighted the title track from the EP, a superb example of glitched, chopped contemporary electronica.
Dark pop artist Cat Turner’s new single ‘Situation’ is a odd but great combination of electro, pop and rock sounds. Turner’s gravelly vocal absolutely take centre stage, a unique sound that will make or break the track for new listeners.
Robert John Ardiff
Come On Live Long member Robert John Ardiff’s new single ‘So Free’ takes a foundation of driven rock music and peppers experimental synth lines, textures and a warbled falsetto on top. There are some memorable melodies littered throughout the track. The refrain, which repeats the title, has a real earworm quality. The guitar solo at the end is solid out too.
Cian O’ Dowd
Something a little bit different now. Limerick native Cian O’Dowd’s indie-folk single ‘Chemistry’ (taken from his forthcoming EP) is channelling Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Neutral Milk Hotel in the best possible way. It’s idiosyncratic, sometimes off-key and endearing slacker-pop. I like this a lot.
Not In My Name
Time now for some soul music with activist aspirations. BIMM graduate Papa Rua’s ‘Not In My Name’ is politically conscious “or maybe we just cut down too many trees” and here performed live in the absolute pocket. Rua’s vocals are pitch perfect, even if his lyrics can be a little too slogan-esque from time to time. That being said, we’re behind the message. We like the track a lot too.