Showing posts from March, 2020

Hunting Hall - Dublin London Portland Single Review

Hunting Hall is the solo project of Dundalk's Tim Shearwood. He is probably best known for his musical and video work with artists such as Third Smoke, Just Mustard, Æ Mak, The Thieves and Le Boom. He released his debut single "helium" in 2019, a year that also saw him support Just Mustard and Æ Mak and play Arcadian Field, Whelans and The Grand Social. Fresh off the back of being named by as one of their "Faces of 2020", Hunting Hall yesterday released a new single and a music video shot in his apartment in Dublin to go with it.
Watch the video for "Dublin London Portland" here:

"Dublin London Portland" is a synth pop overload. The song is both quirky and engaging. The uniqueness of the song coupled with the mesmerising video means that you literally can't help but be engrossed in the whole experience.

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Amanda St. John - Made Myself A Name (Arvo Party Mix) Single Review

Amanda St. John is a soul singer from Northern Ireland. She released her debut album "Grow" back in 2016. Since then Amanda has had her music played on BBC and RTE, been reviewed in Hot Press Magazine and the Irish Times and even had a song used for an advert during the Rio Olympics. Her music has also taken her to perform privately for the US president. 
Amanda has also worked with big names such as Brian Kennedy, Eddi Reader, Mary Coughlan and Ciaran Gribben. In May 2018, Amanda became the first ever independent Irish artist to record at the legendary FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. A studio that boasts previous artists as Aretha Franklin and Etta James. "The Muscle Shoals Sessions" album will be released on May 8th of this year. 

Yesterday, Amanda released her new single "Made Myself A Name (Arvo Party Remix)". Amanda says "I wanted a quirkier, more 70's Tom Waits vibe on this one and thought a remix might be a good option to make it …

Sheerbuzz - Darkside Single Review

Sheerbuzz are an indie rock band consisting of 4 teenagers from Donegal. They are Lachlann Ó Fionnáin, Adam Grady, Lughán Devenny and Evan McGinty. They formed in 2017 and released their debut EP "All Our Time And Money" in 2019.
Tomorrow they release their latest single "Darkside". The song will be featured on "It's a Wonderful Life", a compilation album curated by Indie Music News with all proceeds going to the mental health charity Mind. "Darkside" is an infectious uplifting track with some truly scintillating guitar riffs. It's poppy in parts and rocky when it needs to be but ultimately it's perfectly balanced. These guys have a very accomplished sound and it's easy to see why they're making such a big name for themselves on the west coast.

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Ciarán Moran - Falling Down Single Review

Ciarán Moran is a singer songwriter from Dublin. Starting at the young age of just 13, he performed in bands such as Rise, Must Try DnD and Low Profile before going solo in 2017. He has been gaining the attention and praise of high profile people such as Christy Moore, Roddy Doyle, Glen Hansard and Colm Querney and has supported the likes of Aslan, Damien Dempsey and Brian Kennedy. Through these support slots he has been able to play as prestigious venues such as Vicar Street and Olympia Theatre to name a few.  In 2019, Ciarán released his debut EP "& I Haven't Even Started Yet" which came after a string of single releases over the space fo two years.
On Saturday 28th March, he will release his latest single "Falling Down" which he wrote during a long car journey home after supporting Aslan. He says it is about starting off at a disadvantage and losing a role model in an environment full of drugs and alcohol.
"Falling Down" is a song of heartache…

JaXson - Better Single Review

JaXson is a singer songwriter from Wexford who lists his influences as Hudson Taylor, Hozier and The Academic. Having started his musical journey in 2017, Luke Jackson and his breakthrough year in 2019 were he sold out his debut headline show at Whelan's and played festivals such as Vantastival and Indiependence. He has also supported Little Hours, Hudson Taylor and Aslan. The praise keeps coming for Jaxson as he was named by Golden Plec as 'one to watch' and was also called "the future of Irish music" by Today FM's Fergal D'arcy.
This Friday, March 27th, JaXson will release his brand new single "Better". He describes the single being about "...coming out the other side of a dark, difficult situation with a new perspective on life. One night I lay awake until dawn, watching night turn to day. Despite it being so dark and cold; when the sun rose and it was the start of a brand new day, I was able to see things more clearly. This normal, eve…

Yana - Trapped In A Cage Single Review

Czech Republic's Yana has been making a name for herself on the Irish music scene after 2 brilliant 2019 singles "Distant Shore" and "Will You Be There?". Both songs featured Liam Ó Maonlaí from Hothouse Flowers. 
Today Yana releases her third single from her upcoming "Distant Shore" EP. "Trapped In A Cage" features Elaine McCarthy from Cork band The Lost Gecko on cello.

"Trapped In A Cage" is yet again a very atmospheric song from Yana which is quickly becoming a signature trait of hers. Yana has a unique ability to bewitch her listeners with her vocals. The cello adds a whole new dimension of melancholic dread whilst again being somewhat playful.

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Amy Ellen - It's Time Single Review

Following on from the success of 2019's "My Heart", Dublin singer songwriter Amy Ellen is back with her latest single "It's Time". The track is the latest in a string of singles to be released before culminating in an EP later this year.
"It's Time" is a folk pop song that once again finds Amy lamenting about love in her usual engaging fashion. Amy's voice is delicate and alleviates any of the heartbreak that the lyrics suggest. It's almost as if she is singing directly to the listener which is enchanting.

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Blake's Fortune - Searcher Single Review

Blake's Fortune is the work of singer songwriter John Lennon (not that one). John is from Dublin and has previously recorded and toured with Austrian folk singer Pina Kollars who was signed to Peter Gabriel's record label. He released his debut album "Hello World" in 2017 to positive reviews and he cites his influences as The Divine Comedy, Fred Neil and Beck.
"Searcher" is the first single to be taken from his upcoming second album "Searcher Dreamer". The album features the backing vocals of the brilliant Ailbhe Reddy and Basciville share the guitar and drum duties. The album was recorded over a week in Wexford. The video for "Searcher" was shot in the stunning surrounds of Glendalough, Wicklow and directed by A. Parkes.
Watch here:

"Searcher" is breathtaking from start to finish. It's got a certain eeriness to it that conjures up images of hopelessness and fear. The song is elevated by the hauntingly beautiful vocals of …

Future West - Emergency Single Review

Francis Watters' Future West yesterday decided that given the current state of the world, he would drop his new single "Emergency" earlier than planned. The song was inspired but the feeling of losing a loved one, not being able to cope and self sabotage. The track was recorded and mixed in Dundalk by Orwells '84's Pauric McCrum and Peter McCoy.
"Emergency" is an atmospheric ambient offering with very ominous vocals. It somehow offers some solace and a shining light despite the obvious gloominess of the subject. Francis' vocals throughout the song are incredibly powerful and moving. I've yet to hear a Future West song that I don't like. This one is another spectacular effort.

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Pauric O'Meara - Wasting Time Single Review

Pauric O'Meara is a singer songwriter from Tipperary but currently based in Dublin. He has spent the last few years building up a loyal fanbase and had a breakout year in 2019 with headline gigs ate The Soundhouse and The Workman's Club. He also had his first Electric Picnic performance. Citing his influences as Bruce Springsteen and The Kooks, Pauric has also supported Hermitage Green, Hudson Taylor and Billow Wood.
Pauric is set to play some Irish dates and UK dates in April and May before he embarks on a US tour in September. Hopefully these dates will all go ahead.
In January he released "Is This Real?" which was the first single from his upcoming debut EP "Looking Forward To Hindsight". Today he releases the second single "Wasting Time". 
"Wasting Time" starts off on a rather sombre note before hitting it's stride with a snappy beat. Pauric's vocals are both raw and powerful on this song and it's easy to see why he is m…

Video Blue - New Normal Single Review

Dundalk's Video Blue has today released his brand new ambient track "New Normal". It was recorded last weekend by Jim in his London home. The idea behind the song is to create a calming atmosphere in this current crisis and is designed to be played on a continuous loop. 
The music is genuinely nothing short of spectacularly beautiful and it definitely achieves the effect that Jim was hoping for. It's very calming and I would suggest switching off from the world for an hour or so and just play this. You will absolutely feel better for it.

The song has been released on Bandcamp today and for 24 hours, Bandcamp are waiving their fees so 100% of the profits go straight to the artist. If you have some money to spare and want to help out then click this link Video Blue Bandcamp and download the song and maybe check the rest of Video Blue's back catalogue.

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Intox - Pyrokinesis Album Review

Having released "Rugged Gurrier" back in 2008, it's safe to say that Dublin rapper Intox is one of the originals of the Irish hip hop scene. In 2009, he released "The Propaganda" EP with Jonnyboy and has collaborated with the likes of Terawrizt, Lethal Dialect, Redzer and Maverick Sabre. 9 years later he released the "From The Ashes" EP and today he is back with his brand new album "Pyrokinesis".
The album begins with the aptly titled "Pyrokinesis (Intro)". It's obvious from the very beginning that this album is going to be immense. The beats are somewhat oriental and are perfect with Intox's very clever lyrics. I particularly liked the Owen Hart one. "Red Means Go" takes a more 80's synth mixed with dread approach. It addresses his time away from music, raising a family and dealing with the anxiety of making a new album. The dreamlike "Drift Deeper" brings an ethereal beat that wouldn't feel to…

Rowan - Big Wave Single Review

Cork indie folk band Rowan released their single "Finish Line" in January this year. The song was their first release since 2018's "Asleep In The Rain" EP. At the time of the release, the band were on tour in Canada and the song has almost reached 14,000 plays on Spotify. There was a tour being planned this Summer but that is obviously up in the air at the minute.
For now though they return with another new single "Big Wave" which will be released this Friday March 20th. "Big Wave" is a funky feel good pop/rock tune. It begins as an enjoyable indie rock song but then sheds its outer layer to reveal a pair of shorts and conga lines straight onto a Caribbean beach with a rum based cocktail in hand. I love it.
You can pre-save "Big Wave" on Spotify HERE.

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The John Andrews Band - OMG Single Review

Following the release of his solo EP "Johnny Was" back in 2018, John Andrews returns now with his 3 piece band known as The John Andrews Band. The JAB consists of John Andrews, Michael McCrea, Shea McCrae and Joel Irvine. Today sees the band release their first ever single "OMG" which is accompanied by a cinematic music video which was premiered moments ago at their live show in Belfast.
Here is the video:

"OMG" is a gritty blues, punk rock song that features John Andrews unmistakable raspy vocals with the new added sound of a full band behind him. The band bring a new dimension which allows for experimentation of sound. What they have achieved with "OMG" is nothing short of fantastic.

Follow John Andrews: Facebook Spotify (John Andrews Solo) Spotify (John Andrews Band) Twitter YouTube

Indian Queens - Shoot For Sexy Single Review

Indian Queens are a London/Irish band fronted by sisters Kat & Jen O'Neill. The band are set to release their debut album ""God Is A Woman" on April 3rd. They have already set the music scene alight and have been praised by music icons such as Robert Smith and Tim Wheeler. They also have a 25 date UK tour planned for May.
Listen to "Shoot For Sexy" here:
Today they release their new single "Shoot For Sexy". The song is almost dreamlike with it's airy nature and surreal vocals. It's captivating from start to finish and builds genuine excitement for what's still to come from this band.

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Columbia Mills - You're Not The Answer Single Review

Columbia Mills are a 5 piece indie band from Bray. The group is made up of Fiachra Treacy, Ste Ward, Ken McCabe, Uisneagh Treacy and Paul Kenny. The band released their debut EP "Factory Settings" in 2014 and then followed up with their first album "A Safe Distance To Watch" in 2017. Since then they have received a huge amount of radio play and critical acclaim. They even had their music used in a WWE documentary which got them some recognition in USA. On April 17th, they will release their second album "CCTV". Today they have put out their 4th single from that album "You're Not The Answer". The song was written after a conversation between Fiach and his mother about the loss of 3 of her friends in one year to cancer and is about the cruel nature of life. Columbia Mills are currently set to play a headline show at The Button Factory, Dublin on April 24th.
Watch a live version here:

"You're Not The Answer" is heartbreakingly be…

Civil Simian - Bramble Feat. Emma Loudon Single Review

Civil Simian are a five piece band from Belfast. Having originally formed in 2010 under the name Urban Scarecrow, the band have undergone a musical journey and lineup changes. The current line up consists of Ruari McCloskey, Sean McCann, Colm O'Flynn, Marty Price and Ben Fleming. They describe their music as alternative electronica, reggae rock. In 2015 they won the Guinness Battle Of The Bands and have released one album to date "Ouroboric". 
Late last year they released an incredible video for their single "Bramble". The song itself is a jazzy rock number filled with suspense and drama. It could either be the new Bond Theme or perhaps from Twin Peaks but either way, it's creepy and cool and features sublime guest vocals from Emma Loudon. The video which was directed by Danny Mills (presumably not the former Leeds United full back) is a brilliant short film in it's own right which will leave you thirsty for a delicious cocktail. 
Enjoy the full video …

Peco - Some Folk Single Review

Peco is an indie folk artist from Kildare. Before going solo, Peco was singer songwriter in several bands including Valentine Black, Pedestrienne and Bright Light Fiasco. As a solo artist he is renowned for his songwriting skills which has garnered him semi final and finals places in competitions such as The International Acoustic Music Awards, The UK Songwriting Competition, The UK Songwriting Competition and The USA Songwriting Competition.
On March 20th he will release his brand new single "Some Folk". The song is an uptempo track about looking outwards instead of inwards and features some very infectious hand clapping. It's bound to be a crowd pleaser with it's instant likability and feel good factor.

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Shane Joyce - I Won't Run Single Review

Shane Joyce is a folk singer songwriter hailing from Kilkenny who lists his influences of songwriting legends as Townes Van Zandt, Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan to name a few. In 2019, Shane toured across Ireland and Europe and even played at Glastonbury. This year he plans to release his 2nd album "The Desert & The Rain" which will see him swap his acoustic guitar for an electric and will be joined by a full band.
Watch the official music video:

On Friday, Shane Joyce released "I Won't Run" which is the first single from the aforementioned upcoming album. The track is a joyful listen as it's upbeat, catchy and just damn enjoyable. Shane's vocals are exceptional as is his storytelling. This single just adds even more excitement for the new album.

Follow Shane Joyce on: Facebook Official Website Twitter Instagram Spotify YouTube Bandcamp

Aodán Coyne - Lay My Body Down Single Review

Aodán Coyne is a former trad musician from Ennis, Co. Clare who evolved into an indie singer songwriter. He spent seven years touring Europe and America with his band Socks In The Frying Pan. They played at prestigious events such as The New Orleans Jazz Festival, Milwaukee Irish Festival, Celtic Connections, Edmonton Folk Fest and even played on The Jerry Springer Podcast where I assume they didn't throw any chairs at ex-lovers. Aodán managed to also embark on a solo tour during this period including places such as America, Germany and Ireland in support of his second solo album "Gaps Between Stars" which was released last year. Now Aodán has followed that up with a brand new single "Lay My Body Down".
Watch this live version of the single:

This live version of "Lay My Body Down" has a much more chilled out jazz sound than the almost electro pop album version. It's soulful and catchy whilst also creating a relaxing atmosphere for the listener.