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With so many releases flying at you, here are recommended vetted listens from Nialler9 for you this week, as collated in the Nialler9 New Releases Spotify playlist, updated weekly.
Julien Baker – Turn Off The Lights
21 year-old songwriter signed to Matador Records who was my new artist of the week for the Irish Times last week, hits some big highs on her second album, and the first that people are already paying attention to and she’s nailed it with big songs that burn with atmosphere and a voice that commands the release. The gig on November 9th is sold out.
Lankum – Between The Earth & The Sky
The band formerly known as Lynched release their first album (second in total) on Rough Trade Records. The phrase they coined about themselves still feels like the truest to apply to the band – folk miscreants. There are traditional tunes here but original ones too like the 8-minute ‘Deanta in Eireann’ that could be about nearly any time in Irish history but are applicable to the now – migration, a government who doesn’t care about the little people and using your Irish charm abroad but it turns the song’s gaze back on the homeland – if the Dáil are the pimps, then we are the whores” and in the end, you’ll want to stand up and declare the song our new antagonistic national anthem.
Martin Hayes Quartet – The Blue Room
The Gloaming fiddle players’ latest project saw him convene in an 18th century house in Bantry with frequent collaborator Dennis Cahill (guitars) and New Yorkers Doug Wieselman (bass clarinet, Anthony & The Johnsons and Laurie Anderson) and Liz Knowles (hardanger d’amore), with a fire going at both sides of The Blue Room (the album is called after it) and the quartet’s recording process involved playing each traditional piece repeatedly and allowing something different to emerge in the process. The quartet are playing the album at NCH this Saturday night.
Fever Ray – Plunge
For her first Fever Rat album in 8 years, Karin Dreijer returns to the sound that made the now defunct band The Knife that she formed with her brother a going concern – that means it’s more dynamic electro pop with an edge than a haunted atmospheric album like LP1. More on the background of the album, the release of which was only announced yesterday.
Adrian Crowley – The Dark-Eyed Messenger
The Galway/Dublin singer-songwriter has been following a path of elegaic music making in recent years and his eighth album eschews his trusty guitar completely, thanks to encouragement from producer Thomas Bartlett (The Gloaming again). That makes for music that has new tones and colour to it. The only constant is Crowley’s barrelling baritone.