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.
Conor Creaney, David Kitt & Tim Wheeler’s collaborative project The Lock-In has birthed some striking ambient electronica. The 15-minute ‘Locked In’ is built upon an evolving plucky synth pattern. Layers of reverb shroud the mix in the track’s opening progressions, eventually given way to a more focused electronic arrangement. ‘Locked In’ pulls you into its world and by the time the full force of the track jumps in (not for some 7 minutes) you’re completely invested.
Slow Moving Clouds
Dublin trio Slow Moving Clouds return with a dreamy journey consisting of swelling ambience and gentle folk whimsy. With past releases on the Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) and Dessner Brothers (The National) platform PEOPLE, ‘Swansong/Starfall’ sits comfortably within that particular take on indie folk and is the perfect soundtrack to introspective late summer nights.
Crying For Days
Laois synth-pop artist HOST’s love affair with 80s aesthetics continues on her new single ‘Crying For Days’. It’s a modern, passionate, reverb-soaked twist on a power ballad.
Ryan Vail & Elma Orkestra ft. Moya Brennan
Borders is a fantastic LP. Make sure to listen to the full thing. Ryan Vail & Elma Orkestra‘s collaborative explorations of the North/South divide is evocative and, above all else, superbly composed. We’ve taken ‘Colours’, one of the few tracks on the LP featuring vocals, to highlight but you couldn’t really go wrong with any of the material on the LP.
Sleeping Bears, Elephant
Sleeping Bears’ debut single ‘Hallowed Hill’ is a striking first entry from the new Irish group. A cross between post-rock and dark electronic production styles, the track has a manic edge – only further reinforced by the cold vocal from Elephant frontman Shane Clarke. There’s a muddiness to some of the mix, giving the whole thing a skewed vibe. The track’s skeleton is made up solely of the bass line, full of warmth and body. In that respect, the instrumental isn’t too far afield of something you’d hear in an UNKLE track.
Newcomer multi-instrumentalist Nicolaas Walle’s ‘Tidal Wave’ is a sleek, downtempo post-punk track featuring Emily Lannin. There’s some fantastic guitar work on this one, especially in the where Animals-era Pink Floyd-esque solo.
As The River Flows
Ahead of her sixth studio album WOMAN, due this September, Irish singer-songwriter Wallis Bird has released a rabble-rousing foot-stomper. Blending traditional Irish folk with anthemic energy and a political message that Bird says is “pro-migration, anti-racism and pro-humanity”. ‘As The River Flows’ is a bold cut that seeps in urgency and leaves you ready for a revolution.
The debut single from 4-piece Bedrooms is a jangle pop slice ruminating on life in modern Dublin. Harking back to the bouncy guitar-driven melodies of early 90s indie pop, Chico’s Bodega is nostalgia-drenched fun packed with instant charisma. With a first single this charming, it’s exciting to see what Bedrooms will do next.
The solo project of Berlin-based Sinéad Bermingham (Animal Party) has produced some fantastic electronica in ‘Swords’. Huge props to the production on this cut, the mix breathes alongside the BPM. For such a densely layered track, that sub bass fills so much space on its own, each aspect of the arrangement sits elegantly in this very hypnotic and dreamy track.
Drogheda artist Donal Quinn’s new single combines indie rock sensibilities with an infectious chorus to make a track with definite crossover radio appeal. The song’s building instrumentation and chant-worthy vocals give it an instant familiarity and suggest a future challenger to Ireland’s rock-pop canon.
Turning Invisible In An Imaginary Rose Garden One Evening
The electronic artist usually known as Automatic Tasty swaps in synthesizers for an acoustic guitar on his All City released debut instrumental guitar LP Songs For A One String Guitar. Recorded over the last ten years, the album is an intricate and intimate piece that feels like a warm musical hug. ‘Turning Invisible In An Imaginary Rose Garden One Evening’ is a particular highlight with its gentle meandering making for a soothing opener that’s confident and experimental.