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.
The young Galway indie-rock band NewDad continue to go from strength to strength with the release of their second EP Banshee out today (recorded with Chris W Ryan of Robocobra Quartet), on Fair Youth Records.
Ahead of shows at SXSW in Texas, and UK and Irish shows in March and April, the EP track ‘Spring’ is a highlight of today’s EP release, a confident studio recording with the band’s increasingly-trademark atmospheric shoegaze guitar music anchored by singer Julie Dawson’s warm vocals.
When not composing scores or producing music, as one half of Solkatt, Kilkenny man Leo Pearson is probably still making or doing something music related, like this solo EP under his own name with a title track that is all gritty industrial-clanging cinematic electronica backed with two more originals with two remixes by Polytunnel and Neil Flynn. It’s out now on his own Made Magnetic label, which kicked up last year to release such records.
Man of the Hour
A moody sophisticated big vocal pop track from Kildare musician Púca that explores ideas of fragile masculinity.
This song was written last year as an introspective snapshot of feelings of inadequacy and fear – striving for unattainable perfection, or at the very least appearing like I’ve got it all figured out. This hypothetical version of myself: the titular Man of the Hour; is my way of satirising performative ideals of masculinity, and how fragile it often is. After some years of mental health struggles and figuring out my identity as an LGBTQ+ man and artist, these experiences have become a formative aspect of my songwriting in no uncertain terms.
Soft Boy associate Henry Earnest quietly released a 7-track long playing album called Dream River last Friday. It’s a collection of hazed organic alt-pop music, with pitch-shifted vocals.
‘Wings’ is the third track from the release, a Passion Pit-esque slice of warped pop.
Dreamy alt-pop from former Spies boy Neil Dexter. ‘Alpha’ is Dexter’s third single to date, and it’s produced by Tandem Felix’s David Tapley. It’s got a new romantic 80s vibe to it. Sax by Ryan Hargadon and the song is engineered by Stephen Dunne.
First Class & Coach
My Oh My
Ballydehob, West Cork four-piece indie-rock band First Class and Coach make an immediate impression with this new single, which utilises the same riff from Kings Of Leon’s ‘Sex On Fire’ but doesn’t let that fact ruin a good song. They’ve seen that pastiche and moved past it with their own thing going on, particularly with Geraldine Thomas’ stretched vocal style here.
The band are Reuben Maher (guitars, keys, vox), Jonathan Parson (bass), Geraldine Thomas (vox), and Andrew McNeilage (drums).
The producer Brawni and a film crew and went to the Corralejo dunes near Fuerteventura in Spain and setup his equipment on the sand and recorded a live version of ‘Pearlescent Flourescence’ which will feature on a vinyl release by Cabal’s new label later this year.
Oof, that’s a fine rap beat from Dubliner Muttonhead, who is formerly Sick Nanley, and current co-founder of Burner Records.
Irish electronic LGBT pop artist Viscose is channeling Kyle and Dua-style disco-pop on this danceable new song ‘I.L.Y’.
Room to Breathe
“My favourite producer right now is Alchemist, and Griselda are far and away my favourite rap group. I wanted to make something underground in that vein. Once I had made the beat I went straight to GI”Willhouse
A loosey from Athlone drill artist Sequence, who has moved to Belfast as confirmed by the video.
Bright pop merchants YAWA are at it again with another mood enhancer named after a drink of a similar ilk. Chillwave vibes abound.
Niall Byrne is the founder of the most-influential Irish music site Nialler9, where he has been writing about music since 2005 . He is the cohost of the Nialler9 Podcast and has written for the Irish Times, Irish Independent, Cara Magazine, Sunday Times, Totally Dublin, Red Bull and more. Niall is a DJ, founder of Lumo Club, event curator and producer of gigs, parties & events.