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The 20 best songs of October

The 20 best songs of October


Nialler9’s favourite songs of the past month, all in one place.



I Must Apologise

PinkPantheress is so interesting, we essentially did a whole podcast on her “new nostalgia” garage and drum & bass bedroom pop style.

Her introductory mixtape to hell with it dropped in October – collating her brief singles to date. We are talking 18 minutes long but there’s enough earworm melodies and hooks here to keep you hitting the repeat.

‘I Must Apologise’ samples the 90s dance classic ‘Gypsy Woman’ by Crystal Waters.


Self Esteem

Fucking Wizardry

Self Esteem’s Prioritise Pleasure is one of the finest albums released in October. Certainly, a fine alt-pop album with Rebecca Taylor emerging as a shining songwriter and magnetic lyricist.

These are quietly radical songs bursting with honesty and pop smarts, as is the case on ‘Fucking Wizardry’. The choral chorus (“My hunger times my impatience / Makes me feel reckless/ So I let ya / Let you be selfish / And careless with my head”) is a style that’s employed throughout the album on many of its highlights.


MuRli, Gemma Dunleavy


MuRli’s new single on the burgeoning independent Irish label Narolane Records, ‘Odyssey’, is a collaboration with Gemma Dunleavy with production by Ian Ring aka Boku, and is a sweet mix of MuRli’s booming rap style and Gemma’s garage and R&B vibe.

It’s a track from the upcoming EP The Sky Has Windows EP out in November.




Corkman Graham Cooney aka Yenkee is a reliable maker of fine music, and that’s why Yenkee’s bright and breezy guitar pop tunes are a Nialler9 favourite.

After the recent single ‘Drive’, Yenkee’s ‘Dolly’ offers a rollicking hazy time of a tune and a fun video to (cowboy) boot starring Cooney, Ruth Hodder who produced and did creative direction and Kojaque, who directs.


Caleb Kunle

Could Be Good

This is really superior slice of soul from the Irish Nigerian artist Caleb Kunle, which reminds me of Moses Sumney.


Anz, George Riley

You Could Be

This tune slaps in a Night Slugs meets pop in 2012 way. It’s from Anz’ new EP All Hours out Ninja Tune. Anz plays Dublin this weekend as it happens.


Negro Impacto

Mini Excursion

I’m loving the tunes from Dundalk duo Negro Impacto aka StrangeLove and Chi Chi as featured here. ‘Mini Excursion’ is a vibey R&B pop tune from their five-track debut titular EP.



Archive Material

The title track from Silverbacks’ forthcoming album sees Daniel O’Kelly take the vocal spotlight for a charming tune that is the sound of a band bringing their interlocking and interweaving instruments into a space that feels a bit groovy and individually Silverbacks.



No More Virgos

CMAT has announced her debut album If My Wife New I’d Be Dead to be released on 25th February 2022 via AWAL Recordings.

The 12-track album “is about the double edged sword of comedy” and this new song ‘No More Virgos’, a song that is Ciara Mary-Alice Thompson’s attempt and bringing together her love of Italo disco with her hatred of Virgos.


Wet Leg

Wet Dream

While not as divisive as ‘Chaise Longue’, Wet Leg’s ‘Wet Dream’ is brimming with humorous indie-rock and the lines like “baby would you like to come home with me? / i’ve got Buffalo 66 on DVD?” Short, sharp and not overthought.


Headie One


That bassline makes this tune from North London rapper Headie One’s latest mixtape Too Loyal For My Own Good stand out.


Yaeji, Ohhyuk


Yaeji has returned with two tracks in collaboration with OHHYUK, the founder of the Seoul based indie band HYUKOH. It’s a different vibe for the Korean New Yorker, the chugging guitar line almost sounds electro pop here, with car alarm noises adding to the tension. As the song reaches its chorus, ’29’ opens up really nicely to something more open-hearted.

‘Year To Year’ is the second track.


Luthorist, sivv

In The City

Nuxsense’s Luthorist and Sivv dropped their Time On Earth mixtape last month. Just another 10 tracks of hazy under-the-radar rap productions. Bandcamp.


Jessy Lanza, Loraine Janes

Seven 55

Jessy Lanza has a DJ Kicks coming out on November 19th and this collab with Loraine James features. It’s a track typical of Lanza’s ice-cold electronic minimalism.


Elaine Mai, Loah

Waiting To Breathe

Elaine Mai’s long-awaited debut album Home was finally released last month, and among its guests are the effervescent multi-hyphenate Loah on ‘Waiting To Breathe’.

The song is built on twinkling bells and synths with Loah’s gentle vocals filling that spaciousness between, with the song growing in stature and imprint. It’s a gorgeous three-minute song.


Aonair, Caoi De Barra

Think Twice

I was very impressed with Aonair’s Ireland Music Week performance last month.

Brendan McGlynn’s music is a catchy mix indebted to ’80s pop and radio hits, and I like that he’s really leaning into a slightly cheesy sound and making it work.

On his latest single ‘Think Twice’, he enlists Wyvern Lingo’s Caoi De Barra for an anthemic song that leans into the bombastic choruses, retrowave and both a sax and guitar solo. I love the excess.


Real Lies

Since I

Real Lies have always been capable of tapping into a particular kind of baggy euphoria and they’re doing it again here, as they did on ‘Boss Trick’. It’s from the band’s forthcoming album Lad Ash. They play Workman’s Club on December 4th.



No One Ever Talks To Us

Irish band M(h)aol’s Gender Studies EP doesn’t shy away from big pertinent topics like gender,  female experience in music, Magdalene laundries and cover ‘Oró Sé do Bheatha Bhaile. ‘No One Ever Talks To Us’ is a sludgy F-you to unsound peers.


Wiki, Earl Sweatshirt

All I Need

New York rapper Wiki’s Half God is a fine return to form, and enlisting one of the world’s best rappers on a track isn’t a bad look either, and ‘All I Need’ sounds like a all-timer.


Aby Coulibaly

Chamomile Tea

Along with Monjola, Aby Coulibaly is at the forefront for Dublin label Chamomile Records, marking a new era for Irish R&B musicians, and a performance at Flourish in Button Factory earlier this week confirmed that.

‘Chamomile Tea’ is the artist’s latest, a confident step out once again, on a track which bumps a hip-hop instrumental and a liminal lyrical concern.

Read our interview with Aby.

Every week, the Nialler9 Spotify Weekly Playlist is updated with new music, and in this corner, we share the playlist and highlight some some select songs from the list below.

Want access to the archived weekly playlists too? Support Nialler9 on Patreon.

See the homepage for all Spotify playlists: New Music | Irish | Monthly

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