Former Alphastates singer returns with an excellent debut solo album.
As former lead singer of Dublin band Alphastates, Cat Dowling has been doing this music thing for a while. On her debut album The Believer she sounds revitalised and focused. Alphastates music was a pleasing blend of electronic-infused pop but it was always a bit easier to admire than to love. Unbound by commitment to other musicians, Dowling’s lone creative vision works much better on The Believer.
Dowling attributes her new creativity to becoming a mother for the first time. “Motherhood is incredibly primal, raw, empowering and beautiful, but it’s also very grounding,” she says. “You no longer mess around with time.”
Dowling’s authorative and expressive voice leads proceedings which generally favour a live band feel employing guitar, piano and violin rather than Alphastates’ style electronica. The band includes producers Karl Odlum and Gerry Horan (formerly of Alphastates).
The Believer has a zip and pep to it. There’s no room for meandering when six tracks on the album are under three minutes. The result is a pleasing collection of songs, that sound like the convicted work of a singer and musician making the kind of music she wants to make.
Thursday 9 May – Bourkes Bar, Limerick
Saturday 11 May – The Grand Social Dublin (Album launch gig)
Tuesday 14 May – The Sky and the Ground Wexford (Candle Light Sessions)
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.