Archive for the 'Music' Category

Oct 02 2009

Oh, You Pretty Thing

Published by under Blog,Music

This is what I’ve been listening to this morning…a lot…

2 responses so far

Jun 23 2009

Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds

Published by under Blog,Music

No responses yet

Feb 17 2009

Delorentos Calling It A Day?

Published by under Blog,Music

DelorentosI saw Delorentos in Greystones Theatre last year. Strictly speaking, I went to see Director, but Delorentos were playing support and trying out some new songs. The songs were among their best. They were far more impressive than Director on the night and they left me desperate to hear more from them.


Today, on Twitter, Ray Foley said that Delorentos were no more. Rapture Ponies emailed me some more details in the form of a statement from the band:

We’ve got some sad news.

It’s with a very heavy heart that we have to let you know that Ronan has decided to leave the band. He feels it’s best for him to move on and do other things. The three of us will still be making music and will let you know what happens next.

As our songs always came from the four of us playing together we’ve also decided that it wouldn’t feel right to continue “delorentos” without him.

We’re all very proud of the songs we’ve written over the last year, we feel they’re some of the best we’ve ever done, and as a result we’re determined not to discard them or let them go.

Next month, the four of us are going to record this album together and plan on making it something we’ll all be proud of. It’ll be our last collection of songs as delorentos, and we hope you’ll like them.

We want to thank everyone that’s supported us since we started, we’d never have gotten this far without you. We hope to play a gig or two to say goodbye.

We’ll be in touch soon with more details.

Ross, Níal and Kieran and Ro

I really look forward to the new album, but I’ll be sad to see the group disband.

2 responses so far

Feb 11 2009

Back In Da Day

Published by under Blog,Music,Theatre,Theatre Review

Okay, so I was never much of a fan of school. In the earlier days, I was a hardworking nerd who got a hard time. In my latter schooldays I was far less interested in my studies and far more interested in ‘chasing skirt’. But there was certainly one side of school that I loved – the shows. Whether it was the talent shows, the musicals or the Christmas cabarets, I loved it.

Again, in the early days I lacked any confidence so would never even consider trying out for parts in the school’s or MYTh (Musical Youth Theatre) Productions’ latest show. I was happy to go along to the matinées and see My Fair Lady, Grease, Jesus Christ Superstar performed by my classmates and be in awe at their talent. It was a thrill to hear the tunes and watch these people I knew so well become different characters on stage. It was captivating.

When I moved schools in 5th year, my life changed completely. I quickly found friends and a confidence to put myself forward for some of the shows. One of my proudest moments was being chosen to host the Christmas Concerts and not only that – I was in three of the acts that were performing. I sang a song I wrote with a friend of mine, I was in a comedy sketch and I supported the wonderful Sarah Gostrangely in her rendition of Rise and Shine (I believe there is a video of this floating around though I have yet to see it). They were the greatest times of my school life.

So, to see that my newfound brother Sean is performing in a school musical was an absolute joy. Last weekend, Lottie and I made out way down to Clare to see Back to the 80’s, a new musical based on some of the best and worst songs from the 80’s – (incidentally, Darragh Doyle was recently in a production in Kilkenny and it’s worth having a look at his post here). As school productions go it was both spectacular and very long. The stamina, talent and confidence these kids have is breathtaking.


One of the stars of the show is recent blogging convert, Dermot. He played the role of the older Corey, a narrator of sorts – the role which Darragh took on also. Some great dancing, impressive singing and outrageous clothing made this show a treat to watch.


Back to the 80's


Back to the 80'sBack to the 80's

Back to the 80's

Back to the 80's

Back to the 80's

Back to the 80's

Back to the 80's

Back to the 80's

Back to the 80's


19 responses so far

Feb 10 2009

Oscar Focus: Best Original Song

Published by under Blog,Movies,Music,Music Review

Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Film – all major categories at the Annual Academy Awards Ceremony, but I always look forward to hearing who wins the Best Original Song. Last year, seeing Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová win for Falling Slowly was probably one of my favourite Oscar moments of all time. I was so proud and I had no idea why.


Glen Hansard and Marketa IrglovaBut that’s the joy of the Oscars – we become invested. People watch the red carpet’s catwalk, gawp at the clothes they could never possibly afford, laugh at the fashion faux pas, ogle Scarlett Johannson, await the arrival of TomKat and Branjelina, and then cheer on their favourite film, actor, star. The glitz and OTT Hollywood glamour are pivotal to the show’s success. And it is a show – it’s a long time since it’s been seen as a simple awards night. The comic host, the special guests, the gushing speeches and, of course, the music acts all combine to make it one of the most spectacular nights of the year.




It was the 7th Academy Awards before they introduced the Best Original Song category. In 1934, three songs were nominated: The Continental from The Gay Divorcee (innocent times) beat off competition from Carioca (Flying Down to Rio) and Love in Bloom (She Loves Me Not). The original requirement was that the nominated song appears in a motion picture during the previous year, regardless of when the song was written or whether it was written specifically for the film. The rule was changed after the 1941 Academy Awards to ensure that the song nominated must have been written for the film and not been recorded elsewhere prior to appearing in the film. It was this rule that brought into question the eligibility of Falling Slowly in last year’s Awards. Satisfied that the song was a pivotal element in the movie Once and that previous recordings of the song were not significant enough to break the rule, the judges allowed it through.


— Falling Slowly —




The 1930’s saw some now classic songs take the gong. Lullaby of Broadway (Gold Diggers of 1935), Over the Rainbow (Wizard of Oz) and When You Wish Upon a Star (Pinocchio) are still heard today and in 1938 Thanks for the Memories (The Big Broadcast) beat Jeepers Creepers (Going Places) for the Oscar.


— When You Wish Upon a Star —




The 1940’s stand out simply because of the sheer number of songs nominated each year. The first half of the 40’s saw an average of 10 songs a year up for the Award. Some significant losers include Baby Mine (Dumbo), Chattanooga Choo Choo (Sun Valley Serenade), That Old Black Magic (Star Spangled Rhythm) and Bibbidy-Bobbidi-Boo (Cinderella) while White Christmas (Holiday Inn), Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah (Song of the South), Baby, It’s Cold Outside (Neptune’s Daughter) and the fantastic and heavily covered Swinging On A Star (Going My Way) picked up the Oscars.


— Swinging on a Star —




The 1950’s were keeping a firm hold on old Hollywood. Show tunes, classic themes and love ballads were still all the rage. The Ballad of High Noon (High Noon), Secret Love (Calamity Jane) and Three Coins in a Fountain (Three Coins in a Fountain) were the best in the early 50’s while the latter half of the decade honoured Gigi (Gigi), the brilliant Que Sera Sera from The Man Who Knew Too Much and High Hopes from A Hole in the Head, made famous by Sinatra. High Hopes would be a strong contender for my favourite of all Oscar winning songs. 1955 saw a nomination but not a win for Unchained Melody from the film Unchained. Needless to say, this went on to be one of the most covered songs of the 20th century (all hail Robson and Jerome). 🙂 Incidentally, it lost out to the very twee Love is a Many Splendored Thing from the film of the same name.

— High Hopes —


— On to Page 2 of 3

Pages: 1 2 3

9 responses so far

Feb 04 2009

An 80’s Music Video

Published by under Blog,Music

Just heard a gorgeous modern version of this song (sung by Ane Brun) on the radio and went YouTubing for the original. So bad, it’s good, Alphaville with Big in Japan.


And this is Ane Brun’s version:


One response so far

Feb 03 2009

The Day The Music Died

Published by under Blog,Music

One of the advantages of getting up early and driving in to work is that I get to hear the Ian Dempsey Breakfast Show. Gift Grub aside, Ian tends to play some great music and this morning was no different. For the first time in years I got to hear the full unedited 8 and a half minute long version of Don McLean’s American Pie on the radio, rather than the usual abridged version.


The reason? It’s 50 years to the day since the plane crash that took the lives of The Big Bopper, Ritchie Valens and, of course, Buddy Holly. McLean’s classic 70’s track is dedicated to that day, the day the music died.

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Jan 30 2009

Fitzy’s Viral Video

Published by under Music

Each week Fitzy puts up his Viral Video Selection. Usually they’re interesting enough, but this week’s one really caught my attention. It’s the first music video since Ok Go’s Million Ways video to really impress me. It’s Her Morning Elegance by Oren Lavie:


8 responses so far

Dec 16 2008

One Day International – Blackbird

Published by under Blog,Music,Music Review,Politics,TV

One Day International InterviewA couple of weeks ago, Darragh interviewed One Day International in Le Cirk. I took a few photos and managed to purloin a copy of their album, Blackbird.


I threw it onto my iPod last week and listened to it on the way home on the DART. The first track, Closed Doors, was nice. It was simple and sounded like a lot of middle-of-the-road pop songs out today. Though not overwhelmed, I enjoyed it and looked forward to an album I could right a pleasant review about.


One Day InternationalThen I heard the second track, Little Death, and my opinion completely changed. Quirky, with an upbeat melody fused with a melancholy lyric, I was excited to hear what would come next.


I wasn’t disappointed. Track after track of great tunes makes Blackbird one of the best albums I’ve heard in years.


Lead Balloon is a theatrical number, reminiscent of Rufus Wainwright‘s prime, while Sleeping on Trains is a dark and moody track, like a lullaby for a very bad child. Like many of the tracks on the album, it has a slow, wistful beginning which escalates to a damning crescendo. Maybe not unique, but certainly ahead of the game.


One Day International InterviewMiss Your Mouth, one of the most marketable singles on the album, is another beautiful tale of lost love. It’s a delicate with a memorable melody, without being a repetitive pop tune.


Shiver begins as an instrumental piece showing the perfect collaboration between Cormac Curran on piano, Eimear O’Grady on cello and bassist Danny Snow. It makes you think that this entire album could be a great movie soundtrack; this piece would be a flawless score even without the introduction of the simple and glorious vocals of Matt Lunson.


Not Over You has some of the finest lyrics on the album. Like much of the album, it speaks of loves lost but not forgotten.


Do you remember the moment we met?
I can remember we spoke about shortness of breath.
Do you remember not showing for work
And sleeping together late on in the afternoon?


Black is the Bird is the title track and deservedly so. It captures all that is great about the band. Beautiful piano sounds, haunting melodies, memorable tunes and gorgeous vocals.


One Day International InterviewAs I listened to the first half of the album, I began to draw comparisons between One Day International and acts such as Duke Special, Cathy Davey, Lisa Hannigan and Divine Comedy in particular. I was then pleasantly surprised to reach track 9, Aliens, which I already knew from Neil Hannon‘s version on The Cake Sale. I actually thought it was a Hannon penned track and I was delighted to discover that Lunson is the writer. A tiny bit of research told me that the Cake Sale’s producer, Brian Crosby, also had a hand in Blackbird.


Big Surprise and Darken Your Door close out the album on a downbeat and sad note. Further evidence of the theatrical nature of this album are in the lyrics of Big Surprises.


If you go down to the woods today, you’re in for a big surprise.
They’ve taken all of the trees away, right before our eyes


Darken Your Doors continues the melancholic lost love theme and as it ends I find myself clicking the buttons that bring me back to start all over again.


One Day International are playing The Button Factory on 18th December and tickets are available here. The album, Blackbird, was released in October and is available on iTunes here. For more information on the band, check out their blog.


6 responses so far

Dec 05 2008

The Swell Season In The Olympia

Published by under Blog,Music,Music Review,Night Out

Glen HansardI think, more than anyone else, my Oxegen experience this year was nothing short of perfect. We had one of the best camping sites; I escaped every possible queue; I didn’t get attacked by drunks nor mauled by drug addled oddballs. The food was good and the rain didn’t even bother me. Most of all, I got to see all the acts I was hoping to see and was introduced to some great new performers. On the final night, we had a varied choice of final performances – The Swell Season, Rage Against the Machine, Ian Brown and Chemical Brothers. We decided to see The Swell Season, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova‘s band, in the Pet Sounds tent and it rounded off the festival for us. Their first performance on stage since winning the Oscar for Falling Slowly from the film Once was serene, simple and superb.

On Tuesday night, The Swell Season hit the Olympia. Anthony McG sorted out the tickets for Lottie and I and, after some fine dining in Eddie Rockets, we arrived just before the support act came on stage.



The Hare’s Corner is Colm Mac Con Iomaire‘s trad band, but they are a hell of a lot more than just the diddly-eye. The 8 piece all instrumental group, led by Mac Con Iomaire on the fiddle, played an energetic and modern set that would have whipped the crowd up better with some volume. It was the only downfall. They were exciting, fresh and while they didn’t have the heavier beats of Kíla (who are playing Vicar Street on the 21st December by the way), they are a band I’d love to see again.


Glen HansardThere was a bit too long of a delay between Hare’s Corner departing and Swell Season taking to the stage, which quietened the crowd a little. Hansard et al didn’t get the rapturous greeting they deserved. Indeed, the first few songs, which were sweet and melodic, were met with applause and some polite whoops. But when they played their Oscar winning song, Falling Slowly, the mood turned and it became a night to remember. Falling Slowly was delivered with such passion and gusto that it was hard not to be drawn into the performance. From that point on, we they had us in the palms of their hands.


Kevin and Mark


Kevin and MarkOne of the greatest spontaneous moments from a gig that I have ever witnessed – Hansard began to tell the story of two young guys they met over dinner earlier in the day, who were going to be at the concert that evening. He fluffed his way through telling us, mixed up the lads names and eventually blurted out that the two lads, Kevin & Mark, played a bit of music. One sings and the other takes to the guitar. Half joking, he called Kevin and Mark up on stage and with some cheers and cajoling from the audience, the pair finally make it up. Hansard and the band leave the stage and the two lads are left wondering what song they should do as we all look on, slightly embarrassed for them, praying they wouldn’t make fools of themselves. We need not have worried. They belted out a brilliant version of Bob Dylan’s You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere. Half way through the song the band slowly emerged back on stage to join in. It must have been such a special moment for Kevin and Mark. They got the first standing ovation of the night went and deservedly so. Fair play to them for having the courage and confidence to pull it off.

I asked Kevin what it was like playing with Hansard and the band and were they expecting to be asked up on stage:

Meeting Glen before the show itself was brilliant. He was really sound and actually had an interest in our music. But when he said during the gig to come up and play with him, on his stage, to his audience and with his guitar, my heart plummeted. The spontaneity of it all was just so much! –

Kevin and Mark


If You’ve Gotta Go, Go With Happiness


When I first heard Happiness at Oxegen, I wasn’t over-awed. It was a quiet song and felt too raw and simple. Hearing it again on Tuesday night and I wonder is it the same tune. This time it has a haunting feel to it. Played it total darkness, except for the heavy drumming moments where the stage lit up with the drum beats like cracks of lightning, this was one of the finest moments of the night – a great spectacle.


Marketa IrglovaIntroducing the song Once, we find out that John Carney is hiding in the wings. Too shy to play bass on stage, Swell Season play on without him and the crowd love it. Hansard’s banter throughout added so much to the night. It helped create a sense of intimacy that a venue like the Olympia struggles to provide. The tight seating, the high stage and the formality of the old theatre prevent the closeness that other venues, such as Vicar Street, The Academy, Whelan’s and even our own Greystones Theatre, can provide.

And yet, Hansard managed to bridge the divide somewhat. Introducing the song Lies, he says it is the story of “the guy who tells the truth about things that didn’t happen”.


Marketa IrglovaIt would be easy to dismiss The Swell Season as just being Glen Hansard’s band. He does all the talking and most of the singing. But there is so much more to the band than that. Marketa Irglova’s incredible piano skills aside, her voice takes the harsh edge from his and provides perfect and hypnotic harmonies to compliment Hansard. It is only when she is left alone on stage though, that we discover how truly beautiful her voice is. A stillness came across the Olympia as she sang. You begin to think that we are getting two acts for the price of one in Hansard and Irglova. His voice is about passion, her’s sounds lovelorn and heartbroken. Gorgeous.


The Swell Season


The Swell Season



7 responses so far

Dec 03 2008

Mario Kart Love Song

Published by under Blog,Music

The finish line is just around the bend,

I’ll pause this game, so our love will never end


4 responses so far

Dec 03 2008

Only You

Published by under Blog,Music

It’s one of those songs that’s pretty much constantly playing in the back of my mind. It’s always there, and whenever I’m busy with something – washing up, making tea, entering invoices, etc. – I often just start whistling it and don’t even notice.

Yazoo was formed by Vince Clarke and Alison Moyet in 1981. Before leaving Depeche Mode, Clarke offered the song Only You to the band but they turned it down. It became Yazoo’s debut single and though it entered the charts at 198, it quickly made it to number 2 (it’s a crime it never made it to number 1 – although it can claim the honour of being the song that Tim and Dawn kiss to in the Office Christmas Special). The band lasted less that two years, but both Moyet and Clarke went on to have huge careers – Moyet as a solo artist and Clarke with Erasure.

This year Yazoo reformed for a special Yazoo Reconnected tour, playing Ireland in June. I would love to have seen them, but it was not to be. Maybe they’ll be back…


Anyway, the song is fantastic and of all the songs I could have reverberating around my head on a constant basis, I could do a lot worse. Anyone else have any great songs on repeat in their noggin?

2 responses so far

Dec 02 2008

Sing For Your Supper

Published by under Blog,Music

Following on from this, here’s the amazing Sing For Your Supper by Cathy Davey:


2 responses so far

Dec 02 2008

Cathy Davey Singing For Her Supper

Published by under Blog,Music,Music Review

Advantage of having a theatre on your doorstep #236: When it comes to 8 o’clock on a Sunday evening and you’ve been lounging about on the couch watching movies all day, a snap decision to pop out can lead to a great night of music. Last night we got to see Cathy Davey, supported by two great acts – Molly Jenson and The Raglans.


Molly JensonWe arrived in the middle of Jenson‘s set and she was doing a great job of warming up the crowd. Engaging in conversation and having a joke with the audience, then delivering some beautiful songs, she really made her mark. Having toured extensively in the US and with an impressive MySpace following, Jenson will surely be huge when her album, Maybe Tomorrow, goes on full release in March 2009.

The RaglansThe Raglans are a three piece band who, as Cathy Davey says, are far too young to be this good. Although they are local lads, Stephen Kelly, Luke Carrig and David Hayes have spend a lot of time touring Ireland and spreading the good music. I look forward to hearing a headline set from these three guys in the near future.  It was nice to see so many people showing up just to hear them. For these people Cathy Davey was merely a bonus. I missed out on getting one of their EP’s (they sold out) but there are a few tracks on their website.


Davey describes her Bare Bones Tour as..

…a chance to play intimate venues without being too noisy for sensitive ears. Rearranged songs to better suit candlelight. Three of us playing as many instruments as we can fit in our suitcases and the chance for me to babble nonsense if I so choose as the bigger venues tend to echo unpleasantly, and I do so hate the sound of my own voice.. don’t we all. That’s the Bare Bones Tour. It’s nice. And slightly special.

Cathy DaveyIt is nice and it is very special. Her beautiful voice suits the more stripped down versions of her own tracks. This is how they were meant to be heard. A relaxed crowd at first finally broke out of their shells when she played her hit Reuben. From then on, it was a magical night.

A song I hadn’t heard before, Rowing Your Own Heart Away (I stand to be corrected on the song’s title), really stopped me in my tracks. Beginning with a gorgeous, soothing melody, the latter half of the song broke into haunting and near disturbing harmonies. It was fantastic. Just three voices on stage and it sounded like an evil choir. Brilliant.

Cathy Davey's BandProving her ridiculous amount of talent, she put aside her mandolin and guitar for a while to take to the drums, singing Can’t Lose It from the drum kit. She then nervously introduced The Nameless, but I’m not sure why she was so tentative about it – it was one of her best tracks.

Showing her relaxed professionalism, she had to stop the performance midway through Wild Rum, a song about alcoholics, because she forgot to plug in her mandolin. With ease, she laughed it off and picked right up where she left off. Just one of many lighthearted moments in a fun evening that ran until midnight in the intimate venue.

Cathy DaveyShe closed her set with the 1920’s George Gershwin song, Do It Again. It was beautiful and relevent and closed her set perfectly. She returned to the stage for a crowd pleasing sing-along, Cole Porter‘s You Do Something to Me, where she dragged the very perplexed Raglans back on stage to do backing. With the whole crowd singing along, it was a very satisfying finish to an exciting night.



Keep an eye on Greystones Theatre’s website to see what acts are coming up next. This week sees Director (plus very special guests) take over on Wednesday night and Brian Kennedy on Thursday, playing tracks from his new album of covers, Interpretations.


Cathy Davey's Band

Cathy Davey's Band

Cathy Davey


Cathy Davey and The Raglans


9 responses so far

Nov 27 2008

Some Songs Just Make Me Feel Good

Published by under Blog,Music

Sinéad O’Connor and Shane McGowan – Haunted

3 responses so far

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