BarryGruff Unplugged #3: Paddy Hanna + Wayfarer | March 1st – The Liffey Studio, Newbridge – Doors: 7:30pm | €5/€7
Following the success of previous BarryGruff Unplugged shows, we’re back with round #3 on March 1st. Part three looks an exciting proposition with Paddy Hanna and Wayfarer joining us in the intimate surroundings of The Liffey Studio.
The show is €5 if you book in advance or €7 on the night. The cheap list is limited so if you would like to reserve a spot, email your name to: barrygruff[at]gmail[dot]com – with ‘Cheap List’ in the subject title.
:: Paddy Hanna ::
Probably best known as lead singer in Grand Pocket Orchestra and drummer in No Monster Club, this year however, Paddy Hanna has stepped out on his own, releasing his debut solo album ‘Leafy Stilleto’ and attracting rave reviews in the Irish media since its release in January. The young man from Dublin is in a somewhat more laid back and relaxed mood than before, creating a warm and well-structured collection of gorgeous indie tunes. He was brilliant at Electric Picnic and since then we’ve been working hard to bring Paddy Hanna to Newbridge, and delighted we finally got our man.
:: Wayfarer ::
Wayfarer are folk duo Sam Devlin & Rachel Boland from Co. Kildare. The name might be familiar, having played a few BarryGruff shows, wooing audiences in the process, with their beautiful country folk sounds and alluring harmonies. They have been busy working on a forthcoming EP but thankfully found time to squeeze in a much welcome Newbridge show.
So, it’s been a while but were back in Flanagan’s to rip it up with ‘BarryGruff Presents’ #17 on Friday, January 31st. We’ve got the superbly talented duo of Padraig McCauley (The P Affection/Disconcerting P) and Rory Hughes performing on the night.
It’s sure to be another great night, so come along and enjoy the music. It’s FREE in as usual & kicks off at 9:30 pm. [RSVP]
:: Padraig McCauley ::
Padraig McCauley of The P Affection/Disconcerting P is no stranger to a BarryGruff show and should need little introduction. McCauley is a superb songwriter, singer and performer, if somewhat under-appreciated by many. This is in fact his fifth, yes fifth, BarryGruff appearance and while that might be some sort of record, it is a rare chance to see him play a solo set filled with tracks new and old, from a rather extensive body of work.
:: Rory Hughes ::
Rory Hughes is a young musician from Dublin. He writes folk and blues tunes. Tunes that are good with a deep-rooted storytelling style. While some of the records, done himself with basic equipment, are rough and don’t do the songs full justice. However, if ‘Woe Is Me’ doesn’t stir something inside you, well, there might be something wrong with you.
We’d an amazing time doing the first ‘BarryGruff Unplugged’ earlier in the year, easily our best show to date. To sign off on 2013, we’re doing another unplugged show in the wonderfully intimate surroundings of The Liffey Studio, with Oisin McCole, Sive and Phil McDermott performing for you; three exceptionally talented musicians.
It’s all happening next Wednesday, Decemeber 18th in The Liffey Studio, 1 Main Street, Newbridge. Door are at 8pm.It’s €5 if you book in advance or €7 on the night. The cheap list is limited so if you would like to reserve a spot, just email your name to barrygruff[at]gmail[dot]com – with ‘Cheap List’ in the subject title. More details & info below. [RSVP]
:: Oisin McCole ::
Oisin McCole is an outstanding and undeniably talented folk singer and songwriter, yet he has managed to remain rather illusive outside his native Dublin. McCole’s lo-fi blues / folk blend is refreshingly humble and entirely devoid of ostentatious. His songs are beautifully written and constructed, never sounding contrived or over-produced, and posses an incredibly intimate sound and personal touch. These are folk songs from a seriously talented songwriter, deserving of far greater attention – something his two recently released EPs, From Here The Mountain & Winter Is Coming, are testament to.
:: Sive ::
Sive is no stranger to Newbridge audiences; having been wooed on many occasions by their always impeccable live shows. The brainchild of Naas musician Sadhbh O’Sullivan, ably assisted by her band, they draw from a wide variety of alternative rock, jazz and folk influences. Sive’s gorgeous sound comes from a combination of these influences being fused with excellent musicianship and charm, and her voice, which is simply exquisite.
:: Phil McDermott ::
Phil is a talented young songwriter from Newbridge who has only begun to cut his teeth so to speak. Relatively new to the game he maybe, but he’s already got a fine bundle of material in his arsenal. Hopefully in the new year he takes the next step and heads to the studio to record some of his music.
BarryGruff & Co Present: ‘Discord’ #1 w/ DJ sets from BarryGruff & Cormac Brady :: Saturday, Nov 30th :: 9pm :: Flanagan’s Newbridge :: Free In.
You might already be aware from all my incessant tweeting and the like, Myself and Cormac Brady are joining forces to run a DJ night called ‘Discord’.
The first one is taking place this Saturday (Nov 30th) from 9pm in Flanagan’s, Newbridge; with myself & Cormac spinning the tunes for the opening night. Anyone who’s witnessed one of señor Brady’s sets before knows how bloody excellent he is. Expect to hear loads of great hip hop, electro, indie, alternative, ska, dancehall & more. We’re both really excited to get this one off the ground and hopefully this is the first of many nights in Flanagan’s. Hopefully we’ll see you there.
This Thursday two of Newbridge’s biggest musical mouth pieces will go head-to-head in Flanagan’s, for this one-off ‘BarryGruff V Knoxville Morning‘.
It should be a great night of live music as we bring you a show with four excellent acts, with sets from We Went Down (KM), Ciaran Lenehan (BG), Appo (BG) & Phil McDermott (KM). There’s been some cracking nights in Flanagan’s and elsewhere over the past two years or so, and Thursday night’s ructions shouldn’t be any different.
It’s FREE in as always & we’ll be kicking things off at 8:30. Much more info and sounds after the jump. RSVP here.
We Went Down (KM):
Heartfelt Folk’ n Roll three-piece from Tallaght, Dublin. In there own words: “Two chancers bumped into a lad in an off licence, Questions were asked, We drank cans, We jammed tunes, We Went Down.” There music speaks louder than any promo/pr nonsense. Check it below.
Ciaran Lenehan (BG):
The second of two Tallaght acts, Ciaran Lenehan, has become a firm favourite in Newbridge and makes a welcome return to the town, ahead of the release of his long-awaited debut album, These Stories, in November. To keep it relatively short; Lenehan is a songwriter to be reckoned with. Simple, assured and engaging and most importantly he has the talent to make wonderful stories into fantastic songs.
This time last week there were a lot of tired minds and weary bodies after Electric Picnic. It was a great weekend with plenty of highlights, musical & otherwise. That said, I have yet to find the time to pen anything of consequence about the weekend. No such problem from the every reliable Johnny Feeney, who’s here to share with us his five highlights from the weekend. Huge thanks to Mr. Feeney for taking the time to put together another excellent piece.
Deap Vally (Cosby Stage, Saturday)
Bizarrely, Deap Vally formed in LA in 2011 after Lindsey Troy and Julie Edwards met in a crochet class. Thankfully, their brand of primal, scuzzy blues/garage rock is about as far removed from crochet as is humanly possible. The scantily clad duo, brimming with attitude and oozing sex appeal, open here with the storming, filthy End of the World and don’t let up for the next 45 minutes.
Troy leads on guitars and vocals, banging out huge power riffs and a bellowing wail, with the fiery Edwards hammering away at the drums like a woman possessed whilst also providing backing vocals – their sound is not a million miles away from the White Stripes. Drawing on songs from their excellent debut album Sistrionix, these girls pack a serious punch. Standout tracks include the visceral ‘Make My Own Money’, the downright nasty ‘Walk of Shame’ and ‘Bad for my Body’. Music so brilliantly dirty you feel like you need a wash after it.
Parquet Courts (Cosby Stage, Saturday)
Continuing the veritable feast of garage rock on Cosby Stage on Saturday afternoon, Brooklyn 4-piece Parquet Courts take to the stage and soon have the sizeable crowd spellbound with their spiky tunes. The band are supremely tight and confident and have a fine set of songs to choose from – their debut album Light Up Gold is another album that should rate very highly on this year’s best albums lists.
Guitarists Andrew Savage and Austin Brown swap vocals throughout while the songs are propelled on ably by the rhythm section. As on record, they willingly invite as much feedback off the amps as they can, and as they do during ‘Light Up Gold II’ among others. Other highlights include ‘Master of my Craft’ and ‘Yr No Stoner’. A highly accomplished set. They play Whelan’s in October and that gig is one not to be missed.
Savages (Cosby Stage, Saturday)
There were plenty of quality all-female acts on show over the weekend and Savages, a four-piece London outfit, are another band to fall into that category. They come onto the stage dressed all in black with the lights down (they stay down for the whole show) and their music suits the mood perfectly. They play brooding, dark post-punk from their fine debut album, Silence Yourself, and it’s all really quite hypnotising.
Jehnny Beth is captivating with her haunted vocals and androgynous looks – with her short cropped hair and eccentric dance moves she gives off more than a hint of Ian Curtis. As you would expect with a post-punk band there are some fine bass lines that drive the songs along. There’s thrilling menace to tracks such as ‘She Will’, ‘Husbands’ and ‘City’s Full’. If you like your music dark, then look no further.
John Grant (Rankin’s Wood Stage, Saturday)
John Grant was a personal highlight at EP two years ago and it’s clear from the off here that we’re in the presence of something truly special once again this evening. Grant released his second album, Pale Green Ghosts, earlier this year and with its harsher electronic sound, it’s quite a departure from his tender piano-led debut. Grant, a gentle giant, switches effortlessly between the two albums throughout the performance.
An early set highlight is the delicate ‘Marz’, a delightful song about a sweet shop from his youth. The new songs such as ‘Pale Green Ghosts’ and ‘Black Belt’ sound great with Grant occasionally sitting down to play synthesiser. Good friend Sinéad O’Connor joins him on stage to huge applause to provide backing vocals for the final three songs (she also provides backing vocals on PGG). The epic ‘Glacier’ is magnificent while he closes with ‘The Queen of Denmark’ – a real showstopper and a song so beautiful as to seem scarcely real. Magical.
Arctic Monkeys (Main Stage, Sunday)
Arctic Monkeys have built up a potent arsenal of classic songs since they burst on to the scene as fresh-faced youths back in 2006 and they’re not afraid to use the weapons at their disposal, which is in full evidence at the main stage on Sunday evening. A huge crowd have gathered and are given a real treat as Alex Turner and co rattle confidently through their set while a very rowdy main stage crowd jump around and sing along with reckless abandon. I’d be amazed if there weren’t dozens of personal items lost and bones broken by the crowd up the front.
Opening with super new track ‘Do I Wanna Know?’, the band then swagger through classic songs such as ‘Brianstorm’, ‘Dancing Shoes’, ‘Crying Lightning’ and ‘Old Yellow Bricks’ while Stradbally laps it all up. The combination of ‘Pretty Visitors’, ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’ and ‘Do Me A Favour’ is particularly brilliant mid-show before Alex swaps his electric guitar for an acoustic one and plays a lovely rendition of ‘Cornerstone’. The tempo picks up again for the finale with ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’ and ‘R U Mine?’ before the band leave the stage. For the inevitable encore, the opening lines of ‘When the Sun Goes Down’ sends an already elated crowd into a frenzy, the weekend’s high point, before the band closes with the stunning ‘505’. A masterclass in headlining a festival and an absolute triumph.
The wait is almost over. Electric Picnic 2013 is almost upon us, with just days separating us and a weekend of green fields, blue skies, sunshine and great music (who said I wasn’t an optimist?).
One of the Picnic’s big pluses is, in my humble opinion, sprinkled among all the international acts are plenty of top notch homegrown acts too. There is a fine array of local talent on show over the weekend; The Mighty Stef, Raglans, Adultrock, The Lost Brothers, The Dead Heavys & Lethal Dialect to name but a few. In an attempt to provide a flavour of what to expect from some of the Irish acts playing this year, I decided to put together a wee mixtape (I use both terms rather loosely). You can download the mix and listen to it before going, or on the way to EP – you know the kind of thing. Or you can ignore it entirely, that’s your prerogative.
The tracklisting with stage times/days is after the jump. All the stage times for this weekend’s festival (so far) are available for the ever reliable GoldenPlec too.
Hard Working Class Heroeshave announced the acts lined up to play the annual festival later this year, taking place from Thursday 3rd – Saturday 5th October in various venues in Dublin.
At first glance, Anderson, Biggles Flys Again, Spies, Ships, Reid, Silverbacks, Tandem Felix & Lasertom all stand out. But, with a hundred or so acts playing, there are bound to be plenty of hidden gems in there too. Earlybird weekend tickets are €35 (ending August 23rd). Normal priced tickets will be €45 for weekend tickets or €20 for nightly tickets. Get your tickets online from here.
There’s a full list of acts playing after the jump, with links to their Breaking Tunes page so you can gander at their music ahead of HWCH.
Competitions and giveaways are a rare thing on here but I’m delighted to be able to offer two pairs of tickets forKnoxville Morning: Celebrate 10 Years of Band On An Island in the Odessa Club on Friday, August 23rd.
To be in with a chance of winning all you have to do is email your name to barrygruff[at]gmail[dot]com with ‘Knoxville Morning Giveaway’ as the subject title. Winners will be selected at random and the competition closes at 3pm, Friday, August 16th. If you still need persuading, here’s a wee bit of spiel about the band.
Under whatever guise, Knoxville Morning or BOAI, they have played a hugely important role in the development of what is now a rather healthy music scene in Newbridge. To be fair, few, if any have done as much for music in the town. So, before Knoxville Morning came Band on an Island. Formed over Campfire sing songs in Newbridge ten years ago, Band on an Island have enjoyed a good decade in Irish music. From the fire of those local campfires, they spread their music to places that even they themselves could never imagine. One of which was America, the birthplace of their beloved Country music, where the beginnings of a new project started to take shape.
A trip across the US left Band on an Island founder and chief songwriter, Ciaran Dwyer with a collection of songs and stories, of a different variety to those of BOAI. Having assembled together the bones of a new album, with the help of his BOAI colleagues and a host of other musicians and friends, they recorded a new record under the new Alias “Knoxville Morning”. The resulting record was great – a sweet blend of folk, country and Americana, with Dwyer’s intuitive storytelling the linchpin that holds everything together. The record was well received elsewhere too and managed to secure a German record deal.
For this night only in August, with the help of many friends, they will dig deep into their extensive catalogue of jams and celebrate Ten Years of friendship and Newbridge Music.
This summer I’ve managed to make it to the sum total of zero festivals and not for the want of trying. Knockanstockan was one of the festivals I hadn’t been to before and had hoped to get along to. Frustratingly, like so many other festivals this year, other commitments conspired to prevent me from attending. Thankfully Johnny Feeney was on hand to take my place, his thoughts on the weekend are below. A big thanks to Johnny for the review & the photo is viaThe Daily Shift.
Knockanstockan had been recommended to me by various different parties over the years but it’s been a festival I’ve always contrived to miss for one reason or another. Thankfully I managed to make it down this year and, boy, was I impressed. It was a true pleasure from start to finish.
A relaxed, chilled out vibe was prevalent throughout the weekend with no trouble or aggro at all. There were plenty of hippies in attendance so peace and love was the order of the weekend. Security (volunteers mostly) were easy going and friendly without a power trip in sight. The setting was easily the most spectacular I’ve seen at a festival – standing at the main stage you have the Blessington lakes in front of you, turn around and you have the Wicklow mountains looming large over you. Quite breath-taking.
A truly non-commercial festival, revellers were free to bring in cans from the campsite into the main arena all weekend. If you were properly prepared and brought food as well, you could realistically spend the whole weekend down there without having to take out your wallet once. As it was, there were a few bars scattered around the place selling pints of beer and cider and a decent variety of moderately-priced food stalls. Various workshops, holistic treatments and hot tubs were available and there seemed to be plenty to do for kids.
Musicwise, I didn’t know a large proportion of the bands so it was basically pot luck for me as I wandered from stage to stage for parts of it. The Barley Mob on the main stage in the sunshine on Saturday afternoon had the place skanking with their infectious reggae tunes. Mikey and the Scallywags followed with some stomping, country-tinged rock’n’roll (Joke of the weekend came from Mikey: “How many hippies does it take to screw in a light bulb?” “None. They screw in a dirty sleeping bag!”)
Limerick band The Hip-Neck Blues Collective playing in the Faerie Field were the first nice surprise of the weekend. As their name suggests, their sound mashes hip-hop, folk, country and blues together into a wonderfully, weird sound. They did a rendition of a highly profane Tupac song – possibly ‘Hit ‘Em Up’ – where they were talking about fucking bitches and wives while there were young kids in attendance throughout the crowd. Hilarious, and none of the parents seemed at all concerned or even batted an eyelid.
Dublin/Poland/Lithuania/Ukraine band, Mutefish, surely have to be labelled the legends of the weekend. Having been visibly partying hard all weekend in the campsite and the main arena, they managed to pull themselves together to deliver a rousing set of trad-rock fusion to a raucous main stage. Easily the highlight of the Saturday.
Punch Face Champions were next up on the Faerie Field stage. With a band name like that you’d hardly expect gentle folk music and these guys certainly didn’t disappoint – blaring out excellent, instrumental post-rock in the same vein as And So I Watch You From Afar. Later on, Sound of System Breakdown impressed with their highly danceable, pulsating synth-rock and should be worth checking out in the future.
Sunday certainly felt like a tamer day with noticeably smaller crowds and intermittent rain, with a lot of people seemingly burnt out after partying hard into the wee hours of the previous two days/nights. Zaska on the main stage were great, playing some really groovy funk-rock. Newbridge/Kildare band King Modo played the Dimestore stage, delivering a bewildering performance of their understated, psychedelic indie. Singer/songwriter Cat Dowling performed to a rather pitifully small crowd at the Faerie Field, drawing mainly from her recently released new album, The Believer. Her set was tender but beautiful.
Limerick rockers Fox Jaw Bounty Hunters really caught my eye on the main stage on Sunday evening. Theirs is a full-on rock sound while their lead singer has a captivating, booming voice. They reminded me somewhat of Interpol and I enjoyed these guys a lot. Electronic whizz kid Daithí graced the Electrolyte stage with his usual array of looping fiddles and house beats and always gives one hell of a live show, here included.
Act of the weekend for me were Attention Bébé on the Faerie Field stage, who I stumbled into completely by accident. The 16-piece band blasted out jazzed up versions of classic 90s tunes such as dance tracks Zombie Nation, Free From Desire and 2 Unlimited’s No Limits. The place was packed and the crowd and band were giving it their all, as everyone began to get in party mood again. There were also some fantastic mass singalongs for the Fresh Prince of Bel Air opening credit music and Coolio’s Gangsta’s Paradise. Super fun and a perfect way to finish off a superb weekend.
It has been an incredible experience putting on all these BarryGruff shows over the past two years or so. On this occasion we have decided to do something a little different and do a set of six unplugged shows in the wonderful intimate surroundings of The Liffey Studio. It’s a great little venue in the heart of Newbridge and it’s a perfect setting for this kind of show.
The first of the series takes place on Thursday, July 25th and will see three superb performances from Anderson, The P Affection & Knoxville Morning. Tickets €5/€7 – doors at 8pm.
It’s €5 if you book in advance or €7 on the night. The cheap list is limited so if you would like to reserve a spot send an email to: barrygruff[at]gmail[dot]com – with your name, & ‘Cheap List’ in the subject title. More details & info below. [RSVP]
So, we took a little break, but we’re back again with ‘BarryGruff Presents’ #16 in Flanagan’s, Newbridge on Saturday, June 29th. We’ve got the superb Biggles Flys Again and the wonderful Sive performing, and the ever brilliant Knoxville Morning playing a special solo show (expect to hear some new tracks he’s been working on).
This is a really exciting lineup and one that promises to be a great night, so come along and enjoy the music. It’s FREE in as usual & kicks off at 9 pm. [RSVP]
:: Biggles Flys Again
Biggles Flys Again is the moniker of Dubliner Conor Deasy, who’s got a real talent for crafting 3 minute pop gems. Biggles’ debut album Remember Saturday is brimming with enchanting and whimsical good old fashioned pop songs, filled with sinuous melodies and organic arrangement. This is pop in the old fashioned sense, played by a band, and with an assured sense of style. Remember Saturday is one of the finest albums of 2013 and there’s plenty of others smitten with it too. The Sunday Times made it ‘album of the week’, The Sunday Business Post coined it as “a wistful, enchantingly gentle brand of day-glo alt-pop” and The Irish Times quite rightly said “Deasy has a canny knack for creating tunes the right side of familiar”. Extremely excited to bring these guys down to Newbridge, should be quality.
It’s been far too long since we’ve had Sive play one of these shows, they’re performance is always impeccable. Sive is the brainchild of Naas musician Sadhbh O’Sullivan, who along with her band, draw from a wide variety of alternative rock, jazz and folk influences. Sive’s gorgeous sound comes from a combination of these influences being fused with excellent musicianship and charm; not to mention her voice, which is simply exquisite. Sive’s debut album We Are Moving is well worth checking out, if you haven’t already of course.
It’s always a pleasure to have Knoxville Morning play one of these shows, they always go down an absolute storm. On this occasion we’ve got a special solo show from chief songwriter and frontman Ciaran Dwyer, who’s got some new jams and what’s to test them out. This will be the first new material since last years great self-titled debut which enlisted the help of fellow BOAI members, Stefan Murphy, Gavin Elsted, Brian Gallagher, Claire Prendergast, Stephen Fahey and Laura Caffrey. The result? A record of sweet folk, country and Americana, and while it wears it’s US influences on it’s sleeve, Ciaran’s intuitive storytelling remained a cornerstone.