A lot music from Ireland and Northern Ireland comes Nialler9’s way and every week, we listen through it all and select the tracks from emerging artists and some established acts that deserve to be heard by you.
Dublin rockers Sprints returned this week with new song ‘Literary Mind’, produced by Daniel Fox of Gilla Band and released on Nice Swan Records.
The punchy indie-rock song that is giving me Fight Like Apes and ’90s rock vibes. Watch the video above directed and produced by Niamh Barry.
“Literary Mind is probably one of our most light- hearted songs in Sprints in terms of subject matter, while still exploring something quite close to heart. It’s a real deep dive and exploration into the feeling of falling in love, particularly queer love, in which you feel like you’ve been conditioned to believe a heteronormative way of life is the only “right” way to live, which leads to incredible difficulty and emotional oppression. You push these feelings down, ignoring them, praying them away even but eventually with acceptance comes a rush of emotion that you never thought you’d feel. You unlock, finally, what it means to be happy and with it comes the rollercoaster of emotions, hot sweats, fever dreams, happiness, giddiness and excitement that we’ve tried to capture in the energy and pace of the song.”Karla Chubb, Sprints
The band have loads of gigs coming up in Ireland, UK and Europe.
qwasi & XXXX In Stereo
Dublin based label Burner Records have been putting on loads of gigs in places like The Workman’s lately, and it’s nice to hear some new music from the label too.
The track is a co-release on Fitzgerald’s Ecstatic Intervals label.
Go Down Low
Galway rapper Celaviedmai has been playing this at festival sets this summer, and it suits the season with its Afrobeat and Amapiano touchstone sounds.
The track was produced by tr2vinhobeatz, and Mixing, masterring and additional production by Sim Simma’s Ben Bix. It was ecorded by Alan McKee, who also contributed additional production.
Matt Ó, Lemonade, Sweetlemondae, lod
Bird In The Hand
Tebi Rex’s Matt O is on his solo tip with pals Sweetlemondae, and lod on a track from his forthcoming debut EP before the Kildare duo return in 2023.
‘Bird In The Hand’ features guest vocals from Galway’s Sweetlemondae and was produced, mixed and recorded by LOD. It’s a good vibes only tune.
The Fully Automatic Model
Jonny Delaney aka The Fully Automatic Model released a full-length album called Morphologic last week and I quite enjoyed ‘Points’ in particular from the release, a twinkling, overlapping instrumental production from it.
Anna Jordan is a composer and singer based in Dublin, behind the band Selk.
‘Spill’ is a lilting folk song with casually melodic vocals with string arrangements by composer Judith Ring and playing by Kate Ellis (cello) and Cora Venus Lunny (violin) .
“It’s a song about things we can’t let go of, trauma and ghosts that follow us and affect our every waking day. How difficult it is to shift perspective.”song come to life in the studio was a really lovely moment.’
Lie to Me
Dublin producer, singer and musician Laura Keane aka Elkae has shown an adeptness for creating bright pop music that draws from soul and pop with earworm choruses.
Wang are a self-described “semi-satirical pop group” from Newbridge, Kildare, who are Cormac Dowdall, Evan Lynch, and Conall O Maolain, who previously featured here as The Comstocks.
‘Carsounds’ is the trio’s woozy alt-electronic single, the second of three from a forthcoming debut EP called Episode IV: A New Band.
Bonus points for namechecking Steely Dan lads.
Get the tracks on Bandcamp.
Dublin-based Meath musician Alice Kiernan wears the sheen of a big pop song in the style of Taylor Swift well with new single ‘Golden’. Add in some electronic pop touches and it all adds up to a
The song was written and co-produced by Kiernan, alongside Alex O’Keeffe.
“Golden follows the processes of healing and overcoming a bad time. It’s about how life can start to become clear and golden again without you really noticing it, even if you still think you’re stuck in your rut, that is part of the process.”
Houses (ft. Bronwyn Murphy-White)
A former Popical Island stalwart and member of Land Lovers, Skelocrats, and Autre Monde, Pádraig Cooney, is releasing a solo record called Centuries of Learning on September 29th, via Strange Brew Records.
‘Houses’ enlists his wife Bronwyn Murphy-White for the sweet main vocal, and is a timely “property ballad,” with the lyric – “Houses, what of the prospect of doing without? Why bother with them when you can turn out / Eight hundred bedroom hotels?”
“‘Houses’ is a song about the perversity of the house as an object of desire and speculative asset. The outro has a load of ‘lololos’ rather than ‘lalalas’, which is the Spanish way and is pleasing and amusing to my ear.”Pádraig Cooney
Bonus points for releasing the single on the couple’s daughter Juno’s first birthday.
Belfast artist Sasha Samara returns with her first song in three years. ‘Problems’ finds a sweet spot between Maggie Rogers-esque indie and singer-songwriter pop styles.
Of the song, Samara says “I wrote it to try and untangle my feelings towards a very one-sided relationship, where I felt like I was always having to pick up the pieces.”
Ways of Seeing
The Other Side of Summer
Smudgy dreamy indie pop from Kerry artist James O’Donnell aka Ways Of Seeing. Sounds a bit like The War On Drugs.
“At its core, this is a love song. It is a song about the complexity of love; the pulling together and drifting apart, the ebb and flow, the uncontrollable and mystical nature of it all. The knowing that nothing is certain. It is an ode to the trials we must overcome to carry on the journey while living with the traces left behind, traces that live like ghosts in the unpredictable power of memory. It is to acknowledge that we can never fully escape these ghosts and at times we must be ready to confront them. The ecstasy and escapism of summer cannot always hide an often darker shade of reality that lies beneath the surface. The sense that we might never quite recapture a summer’s highs and that this might haunt us forever.”
For more extensive Irish and new music coverage, hit up the Irish section for individual track features
For this and more Irish songs, follow the Nialler9 New Irish Spotify playlist.