Posts Tagged ‘gigs’

Gig Hard 2: Gig Harder

Posted: July 18, 2008 in Uncategorized
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For a while it has seemed that gigs in the capital city had taken a break of sorts. There was a time a few months ago (I think it was around the time No Age played Whelans) when there was at least 56 gigs a week for 2 months straight. I tried to blag as many as possible and it worked out well enough but fuck me by the end of it I was more tired than a Guardian reader at a horticultural & organic produce market doing a weekly shop.
And now the gigs are back. Back hard.
Tonight you could go to Ministry (Tripod, supported by the legendary Giveamanakick) or Johann Johannson in Grand Canal’s CHQ building.
Tomorrow you should only be going to Analog’s Efterklang/Tortoise/Liars triple whammy deluxe, although you also have Silje Nes in Grand Canal Square or Ministry in Tripod to pop along to if you can bear missing an Efterklang show. Monday sees electronic buzz-makers Storkboy Choons at the Byoom Byoom Ryoom.
Tuesday is Jim White in the Suicra Club.
Wednesday is Antics (if you have the chutzpah to brave it, old man/woman) with New Amusement playing.
Thursday is crackers coz it’s the fucking Butthole Surfers (I’ll be naked at the front) or Dry County if you like (and by ‘if you like’ I mean ‘why are you not at the Buttholes to sing along with Cough Syrup??’).
You could then round it all off with a dose of Robotnik (who was great supporting Laura Marling a few weeks ago) who graces Crawdaddy on Friday with his skills.
So there you have it: a gig plan for the week (for those of you in Dublin).
I’m off to grow a moustache and sprinkle fairy dust on my winkle-pickers for the Efterklang gig and then sacrifice some doe-eyed baby animals for the imminent industrial aural molestation of the Buttholes. I’ll squeeze everything else in too, if possible.
Enjoy it. And a shout out to Brendan who asked me to mention him in this post.

Gigs like Bonnie Prince Billy don’t pop up that often. There are plenty of bands and musicians peddling their wares around the country week in/week out but someone with the resplendent back catalogue, cultish intrigue and that real ‘I will cut my arms off with a semi-blunt knife and force feed them to myself, washed down with a pint of vagrant sweat if I don’t see this gig’ factor are rare enough. So why is it that arseholes insist on gibbering away to their mates during not just most of the set but particularly during the quietest songs and especially during songs that you find genuinely moving? And why is it that their grating voices are always complemented by their gurning, sweaty, moronofaces? Have you ever turned around to one of these dribbling shitvessels and went ‘Oh he/she actually seems quite pleasant and erudite, perhaps I’ve misjudged them’? No, you haven’t, because invariably you are going to be faced with some cuntball in a cowboy hat with a soulpatch and a t-shirt that spells cursewords with numbers (you know the ones: fuck has a 5 for the ‘f’ and so on)
Typically at last night’s gig in Vicar Street there were a few of these Troglodytes parked behind myself and Mrs Therewillbeblog. Why are they there – are complimentary tickets for gigs being bandied around to anyone and everyone these days? Is Bonnie Prince Billy really the kind of gig at which I should expect people to be answering their phones or having a full blown conversation about their pointless lives? The same thing happened at Explosions in the Sky last year. I was positioned in front of four twats, all with the same coloured shirts and haircuts, who whooped ‘up ya boy ya’ and farted repeatedly during the whole gig. They even engaged in some sort of hoe-down dance when Explosions really got into their stride..
To be honest I expect that kind of crap at big gigs where huge mixed crowds flock and pay high prices for tickets. These kind of gigs have really taken off as social events in the last few years and many people head to them for a day out rather than to appreciate the music. I’ve been at these kind of gigs and it’s fine to a point. They are mostly outdoors and it’s easy enough to cope with. But this can’t be allowed to filter down to every smaller-venue gig can it? Am I going to go to the next Bon Iver gig and have some bastard’s Crazy Frog ringtone shatter the silence as Mr Vernon opens his crushed heart to a mostly hypnotised, adoring audience (or as with last night, some guy announcing that he shaved his penis. Admittedly, that was pretty funny)?
I never want to be that guy who shushes people and of course there will be some sort of chatter at most gigs – no one stays absolutely silent for an hour and a half with a few beverages in them. But if you do go along to a gig that’s off the beaten track and is clearly going to attract a large amount of devoted fans who desperately want to hear the songs that have guided them carefully through the traumas and joys of their lives, try and have a little respect and shut the fuck up.

Holy Roman Army w/Capt. Moonlight

Posted: May 1, 2008 in Uncategorized
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New track up on their myspace – a collaboration with Kilkenny’s Captain Moonlight.
Have a listen to it.
They play Anseo on Sunday night with the excellent Storkboy tunes providing support.

Crayonsmith interview

Posted: April 28, 2008 in Uncategorized
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Hey, here’s an interview I did recently with Crayonsmith (who supported Why? at ALT the other night and were excellent).His new album is cracking and he’s a really nice fellow. Read the interview here


Posted: April 24, 2008 in Uncategorized
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It seems that most of the bands I go to see live these days are starting out and plugging a debut album while establishing a new army of fans – thanks to the ridiculously fast buzz-building that goes on on the interweb – as opposed to playing to a crowd familiar with a vast canon of work.
Sebadoh last night in Whelans though was a different kind of animal altogether.
It’s strange because you are watching guys in their forties who were around and participating actively in a scene that is very dear to my teen years – grunge.
Lou Barlow in particular has seen it all, in Dinosaur Jr aswell as in Sebadoh, and it was funny to watch a band of their pedigree tune their guitars between songs (because they had no tech to do it), swapping instruments with ease (because they are around long enough to have considerable practice on everything), and having those ‘just out on tour’ awkward moments where applause makes them grin and they try to crack jokes and sell a few t-shirts. I never got to see Nirvana, Alice In Chains, Soundgarden or alot of the bands whose songs I would probably recognise from the opening note, even if they’re from albums I have not listened to in many many years. Seeing Sebadoh definitely pulled at my musical heartstrings because so many of their songs have that Black Flag early 80s punk thing, crossed with that 90s grunge minor chord guitar crunch.
Will the younger new bands have the legs of some of these acts. Will they be part of a new scene that will change music? I’m not talking about the kind of all-encompassing fame and adulation of the Rolling Stones, but the steady fanbase that will want to see them in 15 or 20 years.This is a great time for new bands and new music as we are exposed every day to SO much stuff we may not have heard of the day before. But Sebadoh reminded me of the time I was given a tape with Therapy on one side and Rage Against The Machine on the other, of copying my cousin’s Nevermind CD he had gotten for free because he worked in Dolphin Discs, of hearing the Jesus Lizard and Lard, of listening to NOFX for years without knowing what they looked like because…well, there was nowhere to get a picture.
The gig itself last night was excellent. And nostalgic…if I haven’t made that clear. My thanks to Sebadoh.

Brasilintime – Tivoli, May 2nd

Posted: April 22, 2008 in Uncategorized
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This seems interesting with the current penchant for Afrobeat in the indie music scene. Samba music has never been my favourite but Madlib is playing and if he manages to not smoke his own bodyweight in weed before the gig – actually it doesn’t matter if he does or not, he will be just as good – then this could be an outstanding night of music. Has this been kept relatively quiet on the advertising front in Dublin or have I just missed alot of posters??

This is from the Tivoli website:

“This show will rely on the backbone of Afrobeat legend Tony Allen, Fela Kuti’s drummer, recent collaborator with Damon Albarn on ‘The Good, The Bad & The Queen’. Cited as creating the genre Afrobeat, Tony Allen is no ordinary musician.
Add two of Brasil’s finest musicians Ivan Conti (Mamao) 1/3 of Azymuth, the collosal force in Brasilian music who sold 100s of thousands of records worldwide and Joao Parahyba renowned percussionist with samba rock band Trio Mocoto and backing band for Jorge Ben. Sprinkle this with…Producer, MC, instrumentalist extraordinnaire..MADLIB.. The BeatKonducta aka Quasimoto aka Yesterday’s New Quintet aka Jackson Conti and producer of the new Erykah Badu LP. Add your JROCC…the founder of The Beat junkies, arguably the best club DJ in the world and place him alongside South America’s DJ Nuts and this event becomes devastating.”

Things that are wonderful indeed..

Posted: April 22, 2008 in Uncategorized
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Charlie Brooker.

Elbow at Vicar Street tonight. Guy Garvey is probably the most affable frontman of all time.

Madvillain album. Should have gotten this for my ipod ages ago.

Berocca. Hangover cure to rule them all.

3 days off work midweek. Really looking forward to it.

Foals: live review (for drop-d)

Posted: April 21, 2008 in Uncategorized
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I went to this gig with my staunchest ‘impress me you angular art bastards’ attitude, as a music fan weary of NME hype, fringe-floppage and drainpipe-jeaned automatons clambering for the best spot in the smoking section of (insert hip bar name here). Not to mention the reciprocal contempt that front man Yannis Phillipakis has shown for ‘lazy’ journalists, which has been well documented in the music press of the last nine months.

On arrival at Dublin’s Academy venue, it is wall-to-wall Skins fodder as I’m dazzled by haircuts and the stench of ripe hormones in the air. The place is packed and the crowd are really geared up by the time the band saunter on to crank up the electronics and, after some technical noodling, tear into album opener, French Open.

Their Antidotes album has received widespread critical acclaim and in a live setting their sometimes over-polished sound is messed with, giving a much scuzzier, edgier feel to their host of songs. They tear through Cassius, Olympic Airways is the weakest song of the set, and Heavy Water is decent but Two Steps Twice provides a real highlight.

With the gruff-looking front man facing sideways on stage, one gets the impression at times that you are watching an intricate jamming session that sonically falls somewhere between The Cure and Shellac. The Bloc Party comparisons are indeed lazy, as Kele and company have never rocked out as riotously as this, with the kind of math rock intricacies that the Oxford quintet display, and they certainly have never featured the kind of full on rave dancing that Foals’ keyboardist Edwin Congreave launches into spasmodically.

They rip through most of their repertoire and their encore is preceded by what looks like a roadie telling a highly dodgy joke about Rome, a hairdresser and the Pope.

With so much reprehensibly unimaginative dross around the ‘indie’ scene at the moment and with The Kooks recently opening their wet, straw hat wearing arses and excreting a new album into our world, it is fantastic and intriguing to see a young band emanate such energy and show as much real musicianship as Foals do. They are deliciously preoccupied with making the receptive crowd boogie and it is a hard rhythm to resist for the hour-and-a-bit they are onstage, at the end of which the crowd are still chanting for ‘one more tune’ as the house lights come up.

Foals as a live prospect prove to be extremely capable, jittery, musically able and groove-oriented and while their album is a fine offering, it will be interesting to see what they come up with in their next few albums, if they bring that raucous edginess to the recording studio.

Another Drop-D review: Daedelus at Whelans

Posted: April 15, 2008 in Uncategorized
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It’s not every day you go to an electronica gig where the gent behind the laptop and Monome (more on that later) is dressed in Edwardian coat, tails and ascot, sporting Creedence-friendly sideburns.
Santa Monica’s Alfred Weisberg-Roberts chose the nom-de-musique of Daedelus after spending his childhood daydreaming of becoming an inventor and in the last 6 years there have been an impressive slew of albums as well as countless singles and side-projects.
This prolific musical output over the years has often combined samplings of 30s and 40s tracks with elements of left-field hip hop, outright dance music, soul and electronica and has led to work with such luminaries as Prefuse 73 and MF Doom.
Onstage he takes the unique step of using the afore-mentioned custom-built Monome, made by a friend of his in Philadelphia, he tells me after the show. This is a minimalist sample trigger box connected to his Macbook laptop which represents his showtunes-era samples as lights darting across the unit’s display, while also giving him the chance to avoid the navel-gazing antics of some artists of his ilk and indulge in some nimble finger movement at high speeds.
As pill-gobblers five yards away swill back the Budvar, Daedelus cranks out the tunes, comfortably contrasting IDM flourishes with chest-pounding breakbeat and house. The tiny venue on the top floor of Whelans is packed in front of him and as he bangs out the music the crowd’s euphoric responses have him beaming like a kid at Christmas.
He flicks so fast between tracks and vocal samples that it is nigh on impossible to keep up, but his most popular tune, Fairweather Friends, is greeted with a huge roar by the up-for-it audience.
At the end of the set, a beaming Daedelus has his hand shaken by nearly every punter around his equipment and then he is away into the night to do whatever it is Edwardian DJs do these days.
A thumping, belter of a gig. Catch him next time he’s over.

Live review: Holy fucking Fuck (gratuitous swearing alert)

Posted: April 13, 2008 in Uncategorized
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While the Camden Street venue of Whelans was yet again packed with a melange of Dublin musos, this doesn’t really bother Brian Borcherdt and Graham Walsh, AKA Holy Fuck, as they hop onto the stage to take their positions behind a bewildering amount of electronic equipment and synthesisers.
Hailing from Canada, Holy Fuck bear little similarity to the sounds their countrymen have become famous for peddling over the last few years. Their sound is a punishing, slightly industrial yet melodic electro-rock with an emphasis on analogue equipment and on tour they are joined by a live bass player and drummer.
While there have been grumblings in the blogosphere of this country – and in some of the English papers – that Holy Fuck live are not as pulsatingly ear-splitting as one might hope, the set at Whelans is a high-energy, bouncing, poppy, sweaty occasion where they jam in most of their album and EP with tracks like Royal Gregory, The Pulse and their big crowd-pleaser, Lovely Allen.
What looks like a real mix of a crowd are dancing like maniacs in parts and both frontmen seem to be thoroughly enjoying the set as they rhythmically bob their heads and jab away at their multitude of buttons and switches, the funniest of these being the comically large red button on display at the front of one keyboard, used to great effect in neary every track.
Because of their limited amount of material, this show was never going to go on for too long but after just over an hour, and an encore of two songs, the sweaty pair thank the whooping crowd and scuttle off.
Although tonight was a success, it’s also clear that this is a band that would really wow a festival, with the feelgood factor they emanate and the mesmerising beats they serve up; tonight’s climactic techno foray being a great example of how to whip up the punters before finishing. Definitely a band to check out live and I’d imagine in a festival atmosphere they would blow you away.