Archive for the ‘Solar Bears’ Tag
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…
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 tickets.ie.
A terrifically trippy animation to accompany one of the Irish songs of the year off one of the Irish albums of the year, She Was Coloured In.
The Music Library is an alternative music show which airs on Flirtfm 101.3, Galway’s alternative student station Monday-Friday between 8 and 9 am. I take charge of the tunes on Mondays
The Bloody Beetroots – Warp 1.9
Adebisi Shank – Logdrum
Nosaj Thing – Lords
Baths – Animals
And So I Watch You From Afar – A Little bit of Solidarity Goes a Long way
Sideproject – Outpatients
Crookers ft. Carrie Wilds – Have Mercy
Crystal Castles – Alice Practice
Vitalic – Still
Solar Bears – Crystaline (Be Again)
Tanlines – Real Life
Toro y Moi – Minors
Viallgers – Home
Ireland has long been rich in musical talent, what it has lacked is diversity. Having produced singer-songwriters on mass for years, we’ve recently seen a surge in successful post-rock/math-rock outfits. Making a name as a breeding ground for electronic artists however, has proved difficult for the Emerald Isle, until now. Solar Bears’ She was Coloured In adds its name to the list of brilliant Irish electronic albums of 2010, alongside the works of Nouveaunoise and Shit Robot to name just two.
The Leinster based duo Solar Bears may not be a household name in Ireland yet, but they have certainly popped up the blogosphere radar, gaining international acclaim helped by their affiliation with English label Planet Mu. Another factor is the undeniably contemporary nature of their sound, even their eighties style synths have a modern glitchy feel. While She Was Coloured In adheres to what’s currently ‘hot’ in the indie community you get the feeling this is more by accident than design.
At no point throughout the 15 tracks does the music feel forced. It flows seamlessly, at its own pace and with no agenda in mind other than its own. Diversity of influence is abundantly apparent, by the fourth tracks we’ve encountered the minimal loops of Four Tet, the groovy funk of Daft Punk, the haunting percussion of Lorn and the patient probing bass of Mogwai, all served on a bed of wavy atmospheric synths. This album is a collection of tracks crying out for use in films, they carry the necessary impact without demanding all the attention.