Showing posts from 2019

The Fast Camels - Full Of Strange Album Review

The Fast Camels are a rock band from Glasgow, Scotland consisting of Drew Sturgeon, Mark O'Connor, Andy Rennie, Joe Smith and Craig Jenkins. They are heavily influenced by 60's Psychedelic rock, power pop and freakbeat such as Jefferson Airplane, The Beach Boys, The Zombies and Bob Dylan to name a few. They released their debut album "The Magic Optician" back in 2007 and have since gone on to record another 3 albums, the latest of which is "Full Of Strange".  They played some top venues such as King Tut's in Glasgow before embarking on a UK tour which then saw them invited to play at the prestigious Monterrey Pop Festival in California which ultimately they had to cancel due to the departure of one of their original members. A few personnel changes and a few albums later, The Fast Camels released their fourth album "Full Of Strange" at the start of this month.

The album begins with "Blissful Serenity" and immediately the influences …

Rebecah McManus - Yours Single Review

Rebecca McManus is a 24 year old sing songwriter from Lurgan, Armagh. Rebecah has been gigging locally for the last number of years which has seen her secure support slots to acts such as The Four Of Us and Aslan. In January she will support Brian Kennedy. Rebecah was a finalist in the Panarts Young Songwriter of The Year and came third in the Dawson's Singer Songwriter of The Year 2019 competition. To date she has released two singles. "Yours" is the third single from Rebecah.

"Yours" is truly breathtaking. Rebecah's voice is enthralling. This makes you feel at ease immediately which means that her gently beautiful lyrics are delivered perfectly. The emotions and vulnerability in Rebecah's voice make her even more endearing and her guitar playing demonstrates subtle brilliance to boot.

Keep up to date with Rebecah at: Facebook SoundCloud

La Di Da - Honey Single Review

La Di Da are an indie pop band who formed in 2018. They played their first ever gig at the Abhaile Festival in Roscommon. After the release of a couple of singles "Get Close" and "Proving Myself", they are back with their latest single "Honey".
Watch the official video here:

"Honey" is everything you want from a pop rock song. The vocals are superb, the wall of sound created by the 3 guitars and drums seems effortlessly brilliant and combined they make for a chilled out enjoyable listening experience. For a relatively new band, La Di Da have their sound polished as if they have been playing together for years. 

Keep up with La Di Da: Facebook Instagram Spotify SoundCloud

The Grey Merchant - Blood Book Single Review

The Grey Merchant are a shoe gaze band from Cork. They released their debut album "Avenue De Rennes" in 2017. It's been quiet on the music front from the three piece who have now become a five piece. However, they're now back with their first single "Blood Book" which is taken from their upcoming second album "The Claude Glass" due in early 2020.  "Blood Book" was recorded in Cork, mixed by Ciarán O'Shea in Whitewall Studios, Berlin and mastered at the infamous Abbey Road Studio with Alex Wharton.
Listen to "Blood Book"

"Blood Book" is incredible. Within moments you can tell it's going to be awesome. The addition of two new band members has really given the band a new dimension with a much fuller sound. The underlying beat coupled with the juxtaposition of the sedate vocals and the screaming chorus is nothing short of magnificent.  February can't come quick enough. The new album is bound to be immense.


Yana - Will You Be There? Single Review

Czech Republic native, Yana released her debut single "Distant Shore" in September to rave reviews. The song was about the abortion referendum in Ireland. Now Yana releases the second single from her "Distant Shore" EP which is due for release in 2020. The new single is "Will You Be There?".

"Will You Be There?" was recorded at AP Studios in Dublin and much like the first single, features Liam Ó Maonlaí of The Hothouse Flowers. The duo once again create a chilling atmosphere while the song itself has a raw simplicity to it which gives a certain level of confidence in Yana's ability and trust in Liam.

Follow Yana: Facebook SoundCloud Twitter Spotify

Amy Ellen - My Heart Single Review

Amy Ellen is a singer songwriter from Dublin. Amy is a product of the brilliant BIMM music institute where she met her bandmates. In 2018, Amy had her first live performance at a charity event in Whelans with artists like Pete Pamf and Elkin. After this came opportunities to play The Crystal Skull Sessions, FlutterTone Sessions and The We Bloom Sessions. Amy has also supported Leila Jane, Emma Langford and Fields whilst also working on her new EP.

"My Heart" is the brand new single from that upcoming EP. It's a very gentle enjoyable love song delivered with Amy's soothing vocals. "My Heart" is a heartbreaking tale of being in an unloving relationship which is told through relatable lyrics. Amy's voice is enthralling and that is why the emotion in the lyrics becomes even more powerful.

Follow Amy Ellen on: Facebook Instagram YouTube Spotify

Sonja Sleator Interview

What was the music scene like when you were growing up in Belfast? I didn't really get into the music scene until I was 18 because I couldn't get into any gigs or pubs! But when I finally was able to it was great! Loads of open mic nights and lots of sweaty gigs in small rooms thinking my mates band were the next big thing! Haha!

What was the first album you bought? Well, for Christmas one year I asked for Shania Twain - Come On Over and Eminem - The Marshall Mathers LP. I think I was about nine so I couldn't actually afford to buy them myself. But I think with my own cash was Good Charlotte – The Young and the Hopeless. I remember it costing about £15 and I had to save for ages!

What was the first gig you attended? I think it was Alloy Mental in a tent while waiting for Faithless to come on. It was amazing!

When did you decide that you wanted to be a singer or did it just kind of happen? I always thought I was going to be a writer but I think I secretly wanted to be a sing…

Introducing Not Bad Music Festival 2019

Not Bad is a brand new music festival happening in Galway on November 29th-December 1st. The festival will showcase artists from the west coast and is the brainchild of Galway's David Boland also known as New Pope. The idea is to focus on connecting original musicians, DIY music scenes and music lovers of the west coast. The festival will take place across three venues in Galway starting with The Black Gate on Friday, Aras Na nGael on Saturday and Nun's Island Theatre on Sunday.

The lineup for Friday is:
Eoin Dolan (Facebook)
Aul Boy (Facebook)
Field Trip (Facebook)
Sinéad Ann (Facebook)
New Pope (Facebook)

Saturday's lineup:
Mudbubble (Facebook)
Dott (Facebook)
Myles Manley (Facebook)
Cruiser (Facebook)
Arthuritis (Facebook)
Neptune M (Facebook)
Dead Horse Jive (Facebook)
Archmotors (Facebook)
Bury Me With My Money (Facebook)
NewDad (Facebook)

On Sunday there will be an all ages event showcasing youth music from Galway as part of a European Capital Of Culture project.


Sick Love - My Man Single Review

Dublin rock band Sick Love are on the verge of releasing their debut EP after several singles over the past year which have garnered them a huge following and saw one single streamed over 800,000 times on Spotify alone. They have just signed a deal with a huge American Sync company who also work with the likes of The 1975 and Wolf Alice. On Thursday, they played at Dublin Castle to launch their first single from the forthcoming EP. The single is called "My Man".

From the very first second of "My Man' you know you're in for an instant hit. The song has it all, face melting guitar solo's, drums that are heavier than John Bonham's drinking and raspy, gritty vocals that invade your eardrums. Turn this up loud, very loud and rock the fuck out. 
There are still a few dates left on their tour so make sure you catch them.

Follow Sick Love on: Facebook Official Website Soundcloud

Midnight Wayne - Transcend EP Review

Midnight Wayne, also known as Wayne Soper formerly of The Hot Sprockets has released his first solo music since the bands split in 2018. Wayne has been working away diligently in his home studio creating a brand new sound which is a departure from his Hot Sprockets days. "Transcend" was recorded and produced by Midnight Wayne at his home studio and was then mixed and mastered by Alex Borwick and Pete Maher respectively.

The opening track from the EP "Stars" is the aural result of a sprocket taking a stroll down an electronic avenue. It's dreamy with a profound airy pop feel to it. It's a love letter to his former band mates with one eye on the past but with two feet firmly in the future.
"World To Keep Me Under" has a very calming effect on the listener as Wayne's vocals ebb and flow like the waves of a gentle sea.
"Someone Like You" is like the reemergence of good times and happiness which is evident in the change in tone as the mu…

Jack L - Oriel Centre, Dundalk Gaol 16th November 2019

Last night saw yet another packed house in Dundalk Gaol as Kildare man Jack L came to town. Emerging from behind the crowd wearing his trademark hat and carrying his guitar like a classic troubadour. When he got to the stage there was a sound issue which the sound man assured me wasn't his fault. After a minute or so it was all good and Jack joked about how he made such a grand entrance only for this to then happen. Flanked by Christmas trees on each side with beautiful lights, Jack performed a cover of Nick Drake's "Northern Sky" and Leonard Cohen's "Dance Me To The End Of Love" which were the prelude to the crowd singalong version of "King Of Soho". The audience were in a frenzy as Jack's voice reverberated around the hallowed walls of the gaol.

This was followed up by "Amsterdam", "Superman 2" and Tom Waits' "The Piano Has Been Drinkin'". What happened next was an incredible moment that needed to b…

Aaron Shanley - A Decent Apology Single Review

Aaron Shanley is a singer songwriter and multi instrumentalist from Belfast. He has already been making a name for himself winning prestigious awards such as an ATOM Best Male award and the Katherine Brick Award for Young Songwriter Of The Year at the Panarts Belfast Nashville Awards. He has also played alongside Hozier, Divine Comedy and Foy Vance. His music has been played on BBC Radio 1, BBC Radio 6 and Radio Ulster. Aaron released his "Metal Alligator" album in 2017 which saw him invited to play a live session at BBC Across The Line. 

His self produced EP " Hellacious" will be released in 2020 with the first single "A Decent Apology" being released today. The track is a solemn yet quirky tale of apologising to a former partner. Aaron's vocals are akin to those of Conor Oberst which gives the song a lovely warm feeling. It's 2 and a half minutes of pure perfection.
Listen to the single and B-sides here:

Follow Aaron Shanley on: Facebook Twitter I…

Lore - More Than This Single Review

Lore are an indie pop folk band from Derry comprising of Raymond O'Kane, Carolann Carlile, Luke McCloskey and Rebecca Hall. Lore released their debut self titled EP back in 2015 which saw them receive nominations for Best Irish Band and Best EP at the Pure M Awards. They then followed up with a second EP "Believe". Now along with a vast list of tour dates, they bring us their latest single "More Than This".
"More Than This" is an impressive love ballad with incredibly strong vocals. The practice of having a male and female vocal is tried and tested but why mess with success when you have two such vocalists within the group that can create such a beautiful sound. You can hear the longing and desire in both voices which really captivates you into their story.

Lore will be playing many dates across Ireland and UK in 2020: 16th November - Omagh (Supporting Trouble Pilgrims) 28th February - Bath 7th March - Newry 28th March - Derry 4th April - Portaferry …

Train Room - Tracks Of Our Youth Single Review

Train Room is the brainchild of Mayo native Joe Monaghan. Joe had been recorded demo's at his studio in Balla for over seven years but it wasn't until he performed at Hard working Class Heroes and released his debut EP "Delicate Bones" that the public got to hear his creations. He lists among his influences as Nina Simone, Wilco, Neil Young and Kate Bush so you can already tell that there is quite a range there. 
On November 29th, Train Room will release the next single "Tracks Of Our Youth". The track is a chilled out mesmerising affair. Joe's vocals are nothing short of soothing which makes for a truly pleasurable listening experience.
You can catch Train Room live on  January 10th at The Grand Social, Dublin January 11th at Bridge Street, Castlebar
Keep up to date with Train Room on: Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

modernlove - Liquorice Single Review

Named after the David Bowie hit from the 80's, modernlove are an indie pop band from Drogheda. The band is comprised of Barry Lally, Cian McCluskey, Graham Fagan and Daniel Rooney. They formed in 2014 and since then have released two singles that caught the attention of many people. Those two singles "Us" and "Bop" received over 250,000 plays on Spotify, one of which was used in the TV show "Made In Chelsea" and saw the band tipped as one of 2019's hottest acts by Hot Press Magazine. They have also recently supported Good Cop Bad Cop and have another support slot soon for Larkins in The Academy. Their live performances resulted in teaming up with Paul Buck who also works with The Vaccines, Everything Everything and many more top acts.
Listen to the single on YouTube:

Now they release their latest single "Liquorice" which was recorded in Black Mountain Studios and produced by Sean Corcoran. The song is laden with laid back grooves that h…

Marc O'Reilly - Dollar Single Review

Marc O'Reilly is a well established alt-rock musician from Waterford. He has been wowing audiences across the globe with his incredible music and vocals. He has released four albums to date, each one has elevated his career. He has played festivals such as Glastonbury, Electric Picnic and Eurosonic and his music has been played over 2 million times on Spotify partly thanks to his songs been chosen for TV shows in America and on movie soundtracks.

His new single "Dollar" has also been used in a US TV show called "The Purge". The episode will be airing on Tuesday 12th November which rather shrewdly is also the release date for the single. The track is taken from Marc's album "L'Etre Politique" and tackles Trump and his cronies political elitism and empty promises.  "Dollar" is scathing, grungy and downright brilliant. The guitar riffs are beyond incredible which showcases the huge talent that Marc possesses. The vocals are raw and hus…

Sonja Sleator - Orion Single Review

Sonja Sleator has become somewhat prolific in the last year or so having released a couple of EP's and several singles. Each and every time she delivers something quite remarkable and "Orion" is no different. It's raw and honest and there is an obvious heartache in Sonja's vocals mixed with justifiable anger. Sonja is carving out an impressive array of music with her incredible songs. This lady just gets better and better.

Of "Orion" Sonja says "The lyrics are fairly clear, I think. But it's not about one thing that happened for me and how I was affected by it. For anyone who has looked up to a person, publicly or privately, if the mask slips and that person isn't who you thought they were it feels like a loss. Orion is about dealing with that feeling and sort of saying to that person, "what the hell were you thinking?".
Watch the video for Orion:

So take that Ryan Adams you big prick!
Follow Sonja Sleator on: Official Website Face…

Glimmermen - It's Nice Single Review

Glimmermen are a Dublin rock band made up of Gavin Crowley, J. Bassetti, Philip Murray, David Prendergast and Orlaith Gilcreest. They released their debut EP "Satellite People" back in 2012 and followed that up with two albums, "I'm Dead" and "Break-in' Out". Now they are on the verge of releasing their third album "Here I Stand" which will be out on November 9th as a vinyl only release.
Watch the brilliant video for "It's Nice":

The first single from that album is "It's Nice" which is a playful song of joy that radiates good vibes and happiness with it's melodic pop jazz tones and it's Zutons sound.  This is definitely one that you could listen to and immediately have your mood altered for the better.

For more on Glimmermen: Facebook Twitter Bandcamp Official Website

Cloakroom Q - Leave Me At Lusk Single Review

Art rock neo psychedelic 5 piece from Northern Ireland, Cloakroom Q have been wowing audiences with their energetic live gigs and their brilliant EP "Going For A Walk And I'm Not Coming Back" which I reviewed back in October 2018. Ryan Elmore, Daniel Havern,  Sean Hickey, Conall Coulter and Dan Monaghan are back with a brand new single "Leave Me At Lusk" which was released on the compilation "Scratch My Progress Vol. 8". The EP features songs from Cloakroom Q, Joel Harkin, sasha samara and Conor Marcus.  Scratch My Progress is an annual talent development programme that offers 4-5 musical acts the chance to hothouse their talents through learning about the business of music, songwriting and performing.
"Leave Me At Lusk" is another mind bending track from Cloakroom Q. It transcends so many genres passing through punk, pop, rock and psychedelic funk. The vocals from Ryan Elmore are beautifully unpredictable as they change from one direction …

Greywind - Desolate Single Review

Greywind are brother and sister alt rock group from Killarney, Kerry. They are comprised of Steph and Paul O"Sullivan and have already made huge waves across the world. Given that they're a relatively new band of a couple of years, they have played huge events such as Rock AM Ring, Isle Of Wight, Reading, Leeds and Download festivals. Their debut album "Afterthoughts" has received widespread acclaim from the likes of Zane Lowe, Kerrang, MTV and Bring The Noise to name but a few. It's safe to say that these siblings are going to be huge.
Watch the official video for "Desolate":

Greywind have recently released the single "Desolate" that is beyond incredible. The track sucks the listener in straight away with Steph's vocals which will paralyse you as you can do nothing but listen intently and in awe. It's ballsy, entrancing and a stone cold rock anthem.

Check out Greywind on: YouTube Facebook Twitter Instagram

Gypsies On The Autobahn - Rubicon Single Review

James Smith, Dan Smith, Gary Quinn and Niall Mooney are a Dublin 4 piece better known as Gypsies On The Autobahn. The band formed whilst they were all in 4th year in school and released their debut album "Born Brief" in 2017. It was obvious early on that brothers Dan and James would be heading down a musical road as music played an important part in their family. This is evident by the fact that their younger brother Kevin is the chart topping sensation known as Kojaque. With the house doubling as a rehearsal space, it wasn't uncommon to find many other bands creating music there such as Little Green Cars. 

After their debut album didn't do as well as they hoped, tension grew within the band culminating in James almost walking out after a major argument with Niall. He didn't though and they managed to reconcile their differences and finished work on their second album "Suspended". Having released two songs from the album already, the third single "…

Magazines - Tough Single Review

Magazines are a four piece alt rock band hailing from Dublin. The band name their influences as Red Hot Chill Peppers, Wolf Alice, Vulpeck, The Cure and Smashing Pumpkins. Having spent much of the year relentlessly gigging, they have now just released their debut single "Tough". Lead vocalist of the group, Cath, describes the single as being "a very poppy song unlike a lot of our tunes, but I like that because it goes hand in hand with the lyrics, which although are simple enough, do carry a heavy meaning for me and remind me of a time where I really wasn't that happy". 
The single carries with it some high profile names as it was produced by Dermot Lambert and Howie Beno who actually took time out of working with Debbie Harry to work on "Tough". It was also mastered by Scott Hull in New York who has worked with the likes of Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan.

Listen to "Tough" on YouTube:
"Tough" is a solid alternative pop rock song…

Owen Denvir - Stay Single Review

Only 2 months since Belfast's Owen Denvir released his single "Ghost" from the EP "Sticks", he now returns with the next single "Stay". The EP is the first of a three part release featuring "Sticks", "Stones" and "Bones". Owen days that this idea is based on Sigmund Freud's theory that personality is the sum of three parts: The ID, the ego and the superego. "Sticks" deals with loss and delusion and the impulsive decisions we make while in the spell of love.

"Stay" is beautifully minimalistic which creates an atmosphere that feels like Owen is in your room singing directly to you. It's got a melodic darkness that really pulls you in. the bells are a nice touch too.

The EP "Sticks" was released yesterday November 1st along with the second single "Stay". The EP launch party will take place on Tuesday 5th November at American Bar in Belfast.

Keep track of Owen Denvir:
Official W…

Something Happens - Oriel Centre, Dundalk Gaol 26th October 2019

Seminal 80's-90's rock pop band Something Happens made their way to Dundalk Gaol for a gig on Saturday night. Frontman Tom Dunne's first words were "this is not a regular show, it's the story of Something happens". From then they brought the Dundalk audience on a journey spanning their whole career with many stories and anecdotes along the way.

They began with their first ever song "Burn Clear" followed by Billy Bragg's "A New England".
"Give It Away" then onto "Forget Georgia" which Larry Gogan championed. The show element of the gig kicks in as founding member and drummer Eamonn Ryan left the band which was recreated by walking up the stairs only to be beckoned back by a pleading Tom Dunne and the audience.

A cover of Abba's "Take A Chance" led into Madonna's "Borderline" followed by "Beach" and a story of how they sold out by playing the Trinity Ball and were signed by Virgi…