Dublin-based instrumentalist, composer and producer Seán Mac Erlaine has released ‘Horse-drawn Thoughts’ from his new album Music For Empty Ears which is set for release in Ireland this Friday, April 6th and worldwide on May 25th.

The track is rich in a layered majestic ambience that is both reflective and emotive, featuring chalumeau and electronics by Seán Mac Erlaine, live sampling by Jan Bang and guitar and electronics by Eivind Aarset.

You can catch him live this Friday April 6th at the Project Arts Centre, Dublin for the album launch. Tickets priced at €14+ are avalable now from projectartscentre.com.

Posted on April 4th, 2018



After its launch last year, Musictown has now revealed the lineup for the 2015 edition of the city festival that celebrates Dublin as a muse with performances in unusual locations and landmark buildings this April. Participants include Glen Hansard, Hank Shocklee of Public Enemy, Seán Mac Erlaine, Damien Dempsey and Aslan.

The programme features:

Sound of Silents

is a programme of silent films from the IFI Irish Film Archive made in Dublin between 1897 and the 1970s accompanied by a series of improvised scores performed by six leading musicians working between the fields of Irish traditional, improvised and electronic music. The event will feature performances by Seán Mac Erlaine (woodwind/electronics), Seán Carpio (percussion/guitar/loops), Jack McMahon (turntables), and Shane Latimer (guitar/electronics), fiddle player tbc, in the IFI on Friday 10th April.

Handel’s Il Trionfo Del Tempo e del Disinganno

will be performed by the Opera Theatre Company in the historically significant and beautiful Christchurch Cathedral on April 10th.

Choice Cuts presents Hank Shocklee

, founding member of Public Enemy and ground-breaking hip hop producer, will feature in a Q&A session and DJ set at The Sugar Club on April 10th.

First Music Contact presents

Breaking Tunes Music Trail

, on April 11th and 18th which will take participants on a walking tour of Dublin discovering a myriad of nooks and crannies where various artists from the breakingtunes.com stable will perform 20 minute, unplugged pop-up gigs.

Barrytown Meets MusicTown

is a musical and literary celebration of Roddy Doyle’s ‘The Barrytown Trilogy’, the featured book for Dublin City Libraries’ Dublin: One City One Book Choice 2015. On April 12th in Vicar Street the music and written word that inspired Roddy Doyle during the periods of writing his famous trilogy in the mid 80s will be celebrated. Voices will come together from the worlds of theatre, film and music and confirmed to participate so far are Glen Hansard, Damien Dempsey, Aslan, Peter Coonan, Paul Mercier, The Trouble Pilgrims, Cait O’Riordan, and Colm Mac Con Iomaire.

Dodeca Cycle

at City Assembly Hall, South William Street from April 16th – 18th will see music and technology come together in a novel, interactive musical installation, allowing 12 people at a time to create their own musical loops.

Touch Of Frost

featuring Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, Nielsen’s Clarinet Concerto and Sibeluis’ Symphony No. 1 in E minor will be performed by outstanding young clarinettist Julian Bliss and conducted by leading young conductor David Brophy in the National Concert Hall on Friday 17th April.

The Isle is full of Noises: Shakespeare’s Music

at St. Werburgh’s Church on Sunday 19th April will see the Gregory Walkers perform a foot-tapping, irreverent journey through a top twenty of Shakespearean songs for all members of the family.

More acts will be announced next month.

Follow @musictowndublin or on Facebook.

Posted on February 17th, 2015


Artists: , , , ,

In association with


As is my annual tradition, the Nialler9 Readers’ Poll in association with Tower Records is back for its ninth year. Once again, I’m looking to find out what Irish albums and songs didn’t leave your stereo, phone, playlists and beyond. I also want to know what gigs, remixes, club nights and more floated your boat in 2015. There are prizes too courtesy of Tower Records, Dawson Street, Dublin and more..

Artwork by Stephen Maurice Graham.


Nialler9’s top 25 Irish albums of 2014

  1. God Knows + MynameIsJohn – Rusangano Family
  2. James Vincent McMorrow – Post Tropical
  3. The Gloaming – The Gloaming
  4. Lethal Dialect – 1988
  5. Hozier – Hozier
  6. Seán Mac Erlaine – A Slender Song
  7. We Cut Corners – Think Nothing
  8. Adebisi Shank – This Is The Third Album Of A Band Called Adebisi Shank
  9. Daithi – In Flight
  10. Shit Robot – We Got A Love
  11. Sleep Thieves – You Want The Night 
  12. Paddy Hanna – Leafy Stiletto
  13. Hands Up Who Wants To Die – Vega In The Lyre
  14. Sea Pinks – Dreaming Tracks
  15. Deaf Joe – From The Heights Of A Dream
  16. I Heart The Monster Hero – Rhythm & Pals
  17. Windings / LandLovers –  Split LP
  18. SlowPlaceLikeHome – Romola
  19. The #1s – The Number Ones
  20. Adrian Crowley – Some Blue Morning
  21. Rhob Cunningham – The Window and Day
  22. Ginnels – A Country Life
  23. So Cow – The Long Con
  24. Women’s Christmas – Too Rich For Our Blood
  25. Jennifer Evans – Works From the Dip and Foul

Nialler9’s top 50 Irish songs of 2014

  1. Ships – ‘The Space Inside’
  2. Girl Band – ‘Lawman’
  3. Talos – ‘Tethered Bones’
  4. Clu – ‘Mirrors’
  5. New Jackson – ‘Having A Coke With You’
  6. The Gloaming – ‘Sailor’s Bonnet’
  7. God Knows + MynameIsJohn – ‘Standard’
  8. EMBRZ – ‘Slow Down’
  9. Rocstrong – ‘Go Head’
  10. UNKNWN – ‘Devil’
  11. Hozier – ‘From Eden’
  12. Planet Parade – ‘You’ll Be Sorry’
  13. James Vincent McMorrow – ‘Gold’
  14. Dear Desert – ‘Give it Up’
  15. Adebisi Shank – ‘Big Unit’
  16. Le Galaxie – ‘Humanise’
  17. R.S.A.G. – ‘I’ll Be There’
  18. Villagers – ‘Occupy Your Mind’
  19. Carriages – ‘Roots’
  20. Jape – ‘The Heart’s Desire’
  21. The Casanova Wave – ‘New Sensation’ (feat. Biggles Flys Again)
  22. Gaze Is Ghost – ‘Revolvere’
  23. Lethal Dialect x JackKnife J – ‘Headstrong’
  24. Krystal Klear – ‘Squad’
  25. Augustus and John – ‘Crosslines’
  26. Tvvins – ‘You Better’
  27. Elastic Sleep – ‘Leave You’
  28. Cloud Castle Lake – ‘Sync’
  29. Go Wolf – ‘One More Night’
  30. Bicep & Hammer – ‘Icebowl’
  31. little xs for eyes’ ‘Love Gets Lost’
  32. Loah – ‘Cortège’
  33. Floor Staff – ‘The Guest’
  34. Sea Pinks – ‘Dream Happening’
  35. Girl Band – ‘De Bom Bom’
  36. The #1s – ‘Heartsmash’
  37. Fight Like Apes – ‘Crouching Bees’
  38. The Hard Ground – ‘Deep in Green’
  39. Revin Goff – ‘Salthill’
  40. Shookrah – ‘Woman’
  41. Spies’ – ‘Moosehead’
  42. We Cut Corners – ‘Every Thief’
  43. Sleep Thieves – ‘City Of Hearts’
  44. SOAK – ‘Blud’
  45. Daithí feat. Jesse Boykins III – ‘Have To Go’
  46. The Minutes – ‘Cherry Bomb’
  47. Sissy – ‘No Mickey on the Mouse’
  48. Costello, Captain Moonlight, Linco, Reece, and Temper-Mental MissElayneous – ‘The Art Of The Clash’
  49. Imploded View – ‘Flutter Funk’
  50. I Have A Tribe – ‘Yellow Raincoats’


Posted on December 11th, 2014


Artists: , , , , , , , , ,

A Slender Song, the second solo album from Seán Mac Erlaine, is a compilation of choice live improvised recordings at gigs in Ireland over four years.

Across ten tracks,  Mac Erlaine moves in a slow fashion, building gasping melodies, droning lines, threadbare ambient electronics and flushes of majestic horn passages puncturing the silence (Mac Erlaine plays alto/ soprano saxophones, clarinet and bass clarinet).

The journey undertaken to record these tracks are hinted at in titles: ‘Dingle’,  ‘Onstage Swoon’ and ‘Nun’s Island’ in Galway for three.

A Slender Song is the result of  those journeys. It’s an exercise in restraint yet has has imaginative limits. It creates a space that has knowledge of modern jazz, improvisation techniques, electronica and folk but bows to none.

The album is below for listening. It’s released on Ergodos on orange vinyl on Friday. Buy it here. The album is launched Wednesday, 26 November, at the Little Museum.

Artwork by Craig Carry.

Posted on November 19th, 2014