Fiction Peaks – ‘In For A Penny’
There’s a nice ambiance flowing through the new single from Dublin five-piece Fiction Peaks that reminds me of Guillemots’ ‘Trains to Brazil’. Fiction Peaks launch the single upstairs in Whelan’s on Thursday, May 26. It’s taken from their debut album, which will be released in September.
Hope is Noise – ‘Bitter End’
Cork four-piece Hope is Noise are gearing up to release their fourth album, Demons, in the summer, and ‘Bitter End’ is our third taster of the LP, following ‘From There With Love‘ and ‘Bad Code‘. It’s a thumping track, and you can just imagine how big the chorus is going to sound live – check out the video for a taster of the energy they bring to the stage. Hope is Noise play Cork Community Printshop on May 27, with support from Wasted Space.
Róisín Murphy – ‘Ten Miles High’
Ahead of the release of fourth album Take Her Up To Monto, out July 8 via PIAS, it seems like Roisin Murphy has really gotten into DIY – she’s directing, styling and starring in the video for ‘Ten Miles High’. It sounds like a deconstructed attempt at a Kylie Minogue pop banger. Which is still a banger, just one that takes you a while to figure out. She also rocks the building site foreman’s look; can you imagine turning up at 8am and seeing Murphy waiting for you? I imagine it would be fun, but would you get any work done with all the dancing that’d be going on? “Never again will I ever be grounded on Earth or be bound by the hurt in you,” she sings. Murphy’s new material is going to have her flying high. She plays Longitude in July.
Planet Parade – ‘Face To Face’
There’s absolutely loads going on in ‘Face To Face’, the opening track of Dublin duo Planet Parade‘s debut album, Mercury, due for release at the end of September. The intro sounds like ‘The Boy Is Mine’, by Brandy and Monica, there’s brass ready to burst out from under the wobbly bass, and a smooth and sexy chorus. There’s about a million other things that you could spend the whole summer trying to hear when you should probably just be dancing down the street on a blazingly hot day with ‘Face To Face’ on repeat in your ears. And when you hear the “woo” you know it’s time to move your feet. It’s uber catchy and does everything that you could want from a summer anthem. I’m instantly excited for Mercury.
Niamh Crowther – ‘Niamh Crowther EP’
The press release accompanying the new EP from 18-year-old Niamh Crowther tells us she has supported the likes of PictureHouse, Blink, and Mundy. Which should be enough to decide whether this self-titled EP is for you or not. She has a great voice, but we’ve heard this type of thing so often before. Not for me – but probably for a lot of other people.
Clare Sands – ‘Satisfy Me’
As above. You’ll know within 30 seconds of starting ‘Satisfy Me’ whether it’s for you. You can see what Cork nger-songwriter Clare Sands is trying to do – meshing blues, acoustic and RnB together. It kinda sounds like KT Tuntstall doing Imelda May. If that sounds like your thing then please, go right ahead.
Oh Boland – ‘Where’s The Beach?’
This is so lofi that you might think there’s something wrong with your speakers when you press play. But there is a bit of a choon lying underneath it all, punctuated by do-do-do-do-dos and sludgy guitar solos. Oh Boland, from Tuam, sound like they’re having the time of their lives. They’ve released a split EP with Delphi and Popical Island in the past. With ‘Where’s The Beach’, they sound like they fit right in with the Popical Island crowd.
The Blizzards – ‘Drop Down The Anchor’
From the most lofi guitar sound you can imagine to the most radio-friendly, butter-wouldn’t-melt-on-these-licks riffs: It’s the return of the Blizzards. Or as you might know them, Bressie and pals. Fact: I thought they were one of the best bands around back in 2006. Yup, ten years ago, when ‘Superdrug’ was the anthem du college jour. Needless to say it hasn’t aged well. I still have a soft spot for the Blizzards though. But ‘Drop Down The Anchor’ isn’t exactly the most swashbuckling return. “I could sleep tonight in the middle of the mosh pit,” anthems Bressie. Today FM will lap it up.
Zombie Picnic – A Suburb of Earth
I’m quite taken with this debut album, four tracks clocking in at a total 38 or so minutes, from Limerick four-piece Zombie Picnic. It’s not quite as polished, refined and euphoric as Overhead, The Ablatross’s debut, which we experienced/devoured last week; this is a little dirtier, more raw, but it still takes you on a journey. “A set of four sprawling and expansive instrumental compositions are set against a backdrop of soundscapes that take you from the beat poets of 1950’s America to the sci-fi futurescapes of Arthur C. Clarke.”
Chris Isaak – ‘Wicked Game’ (Elaine Mai remix)
An EDM remix of Chris Isaak’s ‘Wicked Game’? OK, Elaine Mai… She says: “This track came out in 1990, when I was even smaller than I am now (believe it or not) and I’ve been listening to and loving this track since then. Chris’ vocals are unbelievable, so beautiful and soaring. As I got older, I thought about how much I’d love to remix this track, but at the time, I didn’t have the skill to. Now, after years of watching tutorials, sticking with it and with a little help from my friends, I’ve managed to make that remix of this track that I’ve adored for so long. I’m really proud of this one, so do please do give it a spin.”
Tuath – ‘Existence is Futile’
Donegal four-piece Tuath are gearing up for the release of their second EP on June 15, and ‘Existence is Futile’ is the first taster of it. It’s moody and atmospheric – an ambiance reflected in the video. It’s one of those songs that can take you away – it might not be to somewhere pleasant though…
Here are another couple of things that might be of interest. First up is TXFM DJ Cathal Funge‘s documentary “on the golden era of late night radio in Ireland from the 1970s to the 1990s”. Then it’s the Soul Power documentary that Cork DJ Stevie Grainger made for last year’s Indie Cork film festival. He writes: “This is a documentary which aims to celebrate soul music and turn on new listeners to these amazing sounds. Each clip is only the tip of the iceberg really, so I encourage you to delve deeper into the music of all of these artists and many more. It’s a historical document too and in particular, it shines a light on the revolutionary music that accompanied the civil rights and women’s liberation movements of the 60’s. It traces soul music from it’s jazz, blues and gospel roots right up to disco and it’s present day. I’ve previously done radio documentaries on Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin, James brown, A Tribe Called Quest, and many more, so as you can imagine, with a subject as broad as soul music, i’ve kept it pretty simple and only touched on many artists and themes very slightly. You could do a full doc on northern soul alone, or Stax, or disco or whatever else. But this is almost like an introduction or an overview of soul music.”