Festival season is here again. so to get you in the mood I’ve look through the line up to see what is worth getting out of the rain for.
so kicking it off Electric Picnic , Stradbally, County Loais
The Lost Brothers
Some say the lost brothers sound like a ragged everly brothers.
Others say they sound like the lost brothers.
It is said that the lost brothers formed two years ago in the summer heat of liverpool.
It is also said that the lost brothers wrote a book of songs that autumn, and in the dead of winter they recorded the songs in an attic in Portland, Oregon.
We know that the lost brothers released these songs on their debut album (trails of the lonely) to a heap of praise from the likes of NME, Word magazine, Hot Press, and their fans (losties).
Through the following year, the lost brothers have been spotted in person, performing at Glastonbury, Electric Picnic, Texas (SXSW), New York, Portland, Toronto, Paris, and a hop, skip and jump across the land of the UK and the their beloved Ireland. In their journeys they have toured and played along with many, including Richard Hawley, M Ward, Jolie Holland, The Handsome Family, The Swell Season,Micah P Hinson, Richmond Fontaine, among others.
It is whispered that the lost brothers have recorded a number of songs in sheffield under watchful eyes and a new album will be upon late spring…
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
The band, whose members met years earlier at Connecticut College, formed in the beginning of 2004 and played shows in Manhattan and Brooklyn.They are notable for achieving their initial fame and commercial success via the internet rather than through a record label. Shortly after the release of their first album, they received attention from numerous MP3 blogs and a favorable review fromPitchfork Media, who gave the band a “Best New Music” commendation. The ensuing demand for the album was so great that the band was forced to repress the CD, as the initial production run was too small. They garnered even more press after David Bowie and David Byrne were spotted at some of the band’s shows in 2005
James Vincent McMorrow
James Vincent McMorrow released his debut record, Early in the Morning, in Ireland to widespread critical acclaim in February 2010.
A stunning collection of songs recorded over 5 months in an isolated house by the sea, the album is a completely self recorded and played affair, filled with beguiling and vivid stories, fables that move from a whisper in your ear to a mountainous crescendo in the space of a song, all the while retaining the environment and sentiment in which they were formed.
next up Oxegen
Amidst the euphoric haze of Oxegen 2007, in a mud-laden field in Punchestown, three young Dublin musicians decided to band together and try their hands at forming a popular musical group that might one day aspire to greatness. All hailing from the Dublin suburb of Tallaght, supersonic warbler Shane O’Reilly was joined by horizontally laid back bassist Joe Leech and drumming dynamo Callum Mc Adam. And so it was to pass, Bipolar Empire was born.
Their stylistic folk infused rock’n’roll, delivered with genuine raw passion and boundless energy, began to draw the attention of young music connoisseurs and as the live shows developed into a tighter, more intense experience, so the Bipolar Empire fanbase began to blossom. In 2009, the band got a lucky break and managed to wrangle a trip to the US to work with legendary music producer, Pat McCarthy (REM, Madonna, U2, Counting Crows…). The lads packed their bags and sunscreen and headed to Los Angeles to record their debut album. Impressed by the bands vast reserve of songs (the band had thirty tracks written and ready to record), McCarthy spent the first few days helping the band to whittle the tracks down. Working tirelessly and making the most of their time in the US, Bipolar Empire played numerous gigs including turns at the iconic Continental Club and the world famous Whiskey A Go-Go before heading to Austin, Texas, to perform at industry showcase South x Southwest.
Bipolar Empire had always been a solid three piece but instinctively felt that there was perhaps a missing ingredient, something that would take their sound and live show to the next level. They approached long time friend Mark Maguire, a talented guitarist and song writer, and were delighted when he agreed to come onboard. With Maguire a fully fledged member of Bipolar Empire, the band went on to perform a triumphant set at last year’s Oxegen Festival, playing to a packed out crowd at the 2FM Hot Press Academy Stage.
The National is an indie rock band formed in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1999 and currently based in Brooklyn, New York. The band’s lyrics are written and sung by Matt Berninger, a baritone. The rest of the band is composed of two pairs of brothers: Aaron and Bryce Dessner and Scott and Bryan Devendorf. Padma Newsome, from sister band Clogs, often contributes strings, keyboards, and other arrangements and instrumental flourishes.
City and Colour
City and Colour is the recording alias for Juno Award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter Dallas Green, who is also the guitarist and vocalist of the post-hardcore band Alexisonfire. He plays melodic acoustic and folk music and is often accompanied by a rotating number of Canadian indie rock musicians, such as Daniel Romano and Spencer Burton of Attack in Black.
The name City and Colour comes from his own name: Dallas, a city, and Green, a colour. His reasoning for the name was that he felt queasy “putting the album out under the name Dallas Green”.
Green said that he had been writing material since he was around the age of 14. Regarding the songs released on his first album, Sometimes, Green said that he had been writing material for it as early as when he was 18 years old, and finished writing songs for it in 2005
& last we have
The Young Folk
In 2009 Anthony formed The Young Folk with fellow Ballyfermot Rock College alumni Paul Butler and Karl Hand, along with Tony McLoughlin and Karen Hickey. Assured musicians and songwriters, The Young Folk boasts a line up of some of the most promising young musicians working in Ireland today. Their well travelled live show is already highly regarded for its technical nous. Their performance also distinguishes itself by the kind of raw energy and passion inherent in good folk music, melding the lively variation of oral transmission with the marks of custom and community that give it its character.
Anthony Furey grew up in a musical dynasty where he learned to blend perfect melodies, exquisite harmonies and compelling storylines. He later turned his attention to American folk tradition, integrating its complex harmonies and plaintive lyrics with his own solid Irish roots to create a voice that is at once distinctive and authentic. Paul Butler is a classically trained pianist, accomplished songwriter and multi-instrumentalist whose broad musical experience includes funk, prog rock and folk. Percussion is handled by Karl Hand, who trained under Prof. Udo Dahmen in Mannheim and has played widely in Europe and at home. Bassist Tony Mc Loughlin creates the essential driving pulse which underpins the group’s Americana sound. Karen Hickey, a classically trained violinist, flautist, pianist and Fleadh Cheoil champion, brings orchestral discipline combined with the fluidity of Irish trad to the stylistic interchanges of group.
Tupelo are an exciting, original, acoustic roots act consisting of an eclectic line-up of instruments which includes banjo, guitar, fiddle, saxophone and double bass. Their sound is fresh and unique in today’s world of endless electric outfits.
Tupelo formed in the winter of 2008 in Dublin. Tupelo can attribute their progress to relentless giging up and down the country, honing their craft doing so. Between headlining shows, appearances at countless festivals, and playing support to some of music’s biggest acts, the band loves being on the road and thrives off their fans and live shows.
In May 2011 Tupelo signed to Crashed Records and with their 14 track debut album ‘Dirty Money’ hitting the shelves this September, a promising road lies ahead for Tupelo.
The Kanyu Tree
The Kanyu Tree are Daniel, Shane and Oisín Cluskey, three brothers from Salthill in County Galway. Their single ‘Radio’ was released on Sony Music Ireland in April of this year. It’s the first track to be taken from their debut album which will be released later this summer.
Musically, The Kanyu Tree sound both surprisingly familiar and refreshingly new. Ask the band what music they like and they always end up in a particular place: that loose category that will always have a home on the FM dial. They are a band in pursuit of the perfect pop song.
“It started with us listening to our parents’ record collections,” says Óisín. “And a lot of it came from when Daniel started to learn guitar, playing songs from Fleetwood Mac, Bob Dylan, The Bee Gees, The Police, The Eagles and Simon and Garfunkel. Bands like Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young came later, alongside Prince and Tears For Fears.”
Today, the reference points have expanded substantially, to include bands like Passion Pit, My Morning Jacket, Jape and Beach House.
The band are recording their debut album in London and Galway with co-producer Ali Shaheed Muhammad, from hip-hop icons A Tribe Called Quest. At first look, this doesn’t seem the most natural pairing; however they bonded over a mutual love of Steely Dan. Their collaboration results in a perfect pop offering from the band, an album that accommodates their indie sensibilities with their pop music roots.
happy hunting through all the festivals and hope you find some gems i missed.
By: Shayne Byrne | Beat-Play Ambassador Ireland | @shaynewithMWL | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC