Archive for the ‘Gig’ Tag

Gigs: Michael Kiwanuka & Shabazz Palaces

Not together, although that would be awesome. But both soulful singer-songwriter Michael Kiwanuka and wonderfully obscure hip-hop duo Shabazz Palaces are coming to Cork.

Kiwanuka plays Cyprus Avenue on February 12


Shabazz Palaces will play the Pavillion on May 19th.

Gig: KVX bid farewell

The times they are a changin in the Cork music scene. On July 2nd The Quad bar closed its doors for the last time marking a body blow to the artists and music lovers of langerland. Just over a month later Cork stalwarts KVX will play their last gig. It may seem strange to refer to a group of 20/21 year olds as stalwarts but KVX have formed part of the fabric of the Cork scene for the past six years. For as long as I can recall going to gigs in the various venues across the city there always seemed to be some KVX representation. With guitarist Ciara heading to China this split was always kind of inevitable, I guess many of us hoped it might just mark a hiatus. Whatever happens in the future, Saturday presents us with one last chance to see Leah, Daire, Niamh, Ciara and Eimear as KVX, a chance not to be missed. Just as the Quad left us with the mother of all parties, we owe it to KVX to celebrate the great times they’ve given us over the past six years in style.

And is if THAT wasn’t enough, sher arn’t Hope is Noise, Overhead the Albatross and Agitate the Gravel performing too.

Saturday 7th, The Pavillion, doors 9.00pm, entry €3.

Gig: Why?

Time to get excited. The ultra-cool Why? are bringing their acoustic piano tour to The Button Factory on October 22. Ever since the release of the stunning LP Alopecia in 2008 this Californian hipsters have been a favourite of mine. The music is a funky blend of hip-hop with indie rock placing a heavy emphasis on percussion. And if their beautifully original sound isn’t enough to win you over, the lyrical genius of vocalist Yoni Wolf surely will. Tickets go on sale Friday morning.

Gig: Baths and Solar Bears

It basically couldn’t have been a bad gig. I mean, it was Baths and Solar Bears. On a personal level Cerulean was by a distance my favourite album of 2010 while She Was Coloured in took the honour of favourite Irish album of the year (how it evaded Choice Music Prize nomination I’ll never know). Dublin’s funky Workman’s Club was suitably busy for such an appetising line-up and on entry the danceable beats of Solar Bears were audible. An infectious case of head nod swept across those assembled appreciating the clean sound. A personal highlight was single Dolls which ended the Leinster duo’s unerring set.

And then came the main event, Will Wiesenfeld, aka Baths, made his understated entrance but couldn’t escape the onslaught of cheers and applause as the crowd refused to let him slip straight into the formalities. He was quite obviously taken aback by the reception. I had actually shared a few words with him during the Solar Bears set and he was as friendly and nice as his music is engaging. There’s always the fear that a solo electronic artist will not offer enough presence to entertain a big crowd but this certainly wasn’t the case last Friday. With Cerulean only accounting for about half of the set the new tunes kept the fans guessing while some nice touches to the established favourites added freshness to the set. Will himself immersed himself into the show hopping, bopping and singing like it was his last ever show. There was also just the right amount of crowd interaction and humour to tie the set together.

Sublime. If you don’t believe me, here’s proof…

Gig: Baths & Solar Bears

What’s my definition of a good night out? Well take my current favourite international act Baths, put him on stage with my favourite Irish act at the moment Solar Bears and we’re on the right track. The Workman’s Club in Dublin plays host to these electronic tricksters on the 29th of April. I’ve got my ticket, get yours at

Video: &U&I live

It felt somewhat poignant last Thursday, with our Government reaching historic heights of calamity(there’s a film in it I swear) that I found myself standing in Galway’s Aras na Gael listening to a brand out punk rock so often affiliated with anti-government mentality. The venue, which is little more than a garage for bands to jam in, played host to locals NeverNoodz, Limerick’s We Come in Pieces and leesiders We.Were.Kings – an amalgamation of  former favourites The Avalanche Effect and Burn Us Both. British Hardcore act &U&I played the role of headliners on a night that was, how you say, loud as fuck. Sound was about as messy as it gets but that added to the feeling that was this was a good old-fashioned rock gig.

&U&I performing ‘Who Will Look After Adam?’ off thier EP Kill The Man That Shot That Man.

Gig: The Ambience Affair & Windings

Thursday night saw the first gig of the Certain Three Tour featuring Windings, The Ambience Affair and We Cut Corners, come to Galway’s Rosin Dubh. Unfortunately I missed openers We Cut Corners, whom I’ve been meaning to check out for a while. In truth though it was the latter acts that had provided the real pull to the gig, the free admission didn’t hurt too. I last saw The Ambience Affair at 2008’s Hard Working Class Heroes. I remember being intrigued by the then two-piece who struggled to master their array of loop and effects pedals but had an appealing and distinct sound. Windings, for all the acclaim their 2010 album It’s Never Night got, were still something of an unturned stone, with just two songs on my iTunes.

The Ambience Affair, complete with new recruit, bassist Yvonne Ryan, were second on stage. The band may have an updated member list but  they haven’t deviated in terms of style and sound and are still making engaging and original tunes which are a celebration of layered guitar and vocals with frontman Jaime Clarke taking multi-tasking to a new level. Clarke is backed up masterfully by drummer Marc Gallagher and Ryan but make no mistake he is the focal point. His powerful vocals are belted out furiously in vain-popping dedication to the performance. Compelling though the music was, it was unfortunate to see the band are still plagued by the same problems. Clarke appears something of a perfectionist. Just like in 2008 songs had to be cut off and re-started. He places a certain level of pressure on himself, between the guitar, singing and pedal controlling. Rather than adapt to bum-notes and recover, he insists on calling a halt to songs to the frustration of those in attendance. It is the only glitch in an otherwise fantastic live show.

With the dance floor filling up nicely Windings took to the stage. Decked out in check-shirts, bootcut jeans and skater shoes, it was refreshing to see a modern act not feeling the need to conform to some indie stereotype. Singer Steve Ryan was more than comfortable speaking to the crowd and the band really gave off the impression of being nice, ordinary guys. Unfortunately that’s how the music was too, nice and ordinary. The performance wasn’t bad, nor was the music but perhaps that’s because Windings play a safe brand of indie rock, it’s unadventurous and inoffensive. It was the kind of performance that wouldn’t force you to retire to the smoking area, but equally it did little to promote buying the album.

‘Tis the Season for Sleigh Bells

One of the best bits of festive cheer to come my way this December is the news that the wonderful Sleigh Bells are coming to Ireland. The experimental rock duo play Dublin’s Whelan’s on February 18th. Tickets are €16.50 plus booking fee. The New York outfit eluded many European festivals this summer their performance was the talk of Primavera 2010.

Gig: Cap Pas Cap

Cap Pas Cap are a Dublin based electronic-tinged indie outfit. Haunted Light is the band’s first album and was launched on the 13th of November off Skinny Wolves. On Saturday night the Rosin Dubh played host to the Leinster hipsters. They have been quietly raising a few eyebrows in the capital and getting favourable mentions in various blogs, however this failed to attract a reasonable crowd and those who chose to observe did so from a cautious distance leaving the dance floor to the tumbleweeds.

With such a lack of energy to feed off it’s somewhat unsurprising that CPC put on a show that was businesslike and nothing more. Their undeniably funky brand of danceable indie-pop had the desired effect on some of the venues more inebriated clientele as tunes like the infectious single ‘Friends’ were rewarded with the awkward flailing-limb moves they deserve.

Having won over pockets of onlookers with a notably up-tempo opening, the set dipped midway with a series of tracks that failed to make any kind of first impression, sounding rather generic and stale. Loitering between The Ting Tings and Fight Like Apes with a hint of Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Cap Pas Cap are not creating an entirely new or ground-breaking sound, but not every new act needs to be incredibly innovative, what CPC are doing for the most part is creating catchy pop tunes. Not-so-discreet glances and hand signals showed the band is still getting comfortable with some of the songs onstage.

A reversion back to the lively, provided a strong finish to Saturday night’s set with a handful of those impressed queuing up to get their hands on Haunted Light. With a more receptive crowd, a more inspiring stage presence and a removal of filler CPC could become one of the more exciting prospects in Ireland’s ever-growing indie scene.

Weekly Watch

No room for homegrown acts I’m afraid as this week sees three giants from the US cross the Atlantic:

The National, Olympia Theatre Dublin, Thursday and Friday, sold out

These stylish New Yorkers always put on a show and will be blasting some of the great tunes that feature on their brilliant 2010 album High Violet.


Janelle Monae, Tripod Dublin, Wednesday, €28/€32

Possibly the biggest success story of 2010, Ms. Monae brings her classy brand of soul-R&B/pop to the Tripod. No doubt many of those fortunate to catch her at EP’10 will be in attendance.


Interpol, Olympia Dublin, Monday and Tuesday, sold out

Mixed reviews of Interpol’s latest album, but nothing can deny the quality of what has gone before.