Katie Laffan - Photo: Ruth Medjber
Info: As always we bring you the best of independent Irish music over the last month all in one place for your listening pleasure!
To kick things off on our third issue, we have the lovely jazz-blues sounds of Cork artist Clare Sands via her new single 'Join Me At The Table' from the 23 year old's album of the same name which was released last year. It has all of the classical old world jazz sounds, with Sands' vocals both warm and endearing, the upright bass and piano are also completely bang on the money here, giving the single a real sense of authenticity.
I'm really getting down and grooving to the funky vibes that are being fired out all over the place from Katie Laffan's new single 'Tastemaker', with its 80's rap intro sequence, Laffan crafts one of those peachy 'songs of the summer', it's disco, funk and pop all rolled into one, and put together perfectly, and there's even bloody cow bell for the win too, yum.
What could very well be my favourite release of theirs to date, Limerick three-piece Slow Riot release the slick and moody 'Pink December', it holds all of the best dark 80's industrial rock, Depeche Mode / The Cure spring to mind with a fine lather of contemporary sounds courtesy of tribal bass and drum movements.
Slow Riot - Pink December
Hailing from Raheny, Dublin, indie pop solo act Milky releases his second single, 'Inside I'm Dancing', which is an interesting change of direction from last year's more rock-based debut 'Me vs You'. One thing that is noticeable when you listen to both is that the young artist is channeling a lot of nice influences from the past vocally, from Clapton, to Joel, to McClean. On the new single there's a very George Martin vibe courtesy of the strings and keys, recalling the more orchestral moments on Sgt. Peppers.
Tipping their cap to Madness, Ian Dury in his less frantic moments, and many more, Interskalactic released their self-titled 6-track EP only last week, and are currently on their Irish tour to promote the release. We're currently digging the joyous merry-go-round that is 'Clad In Gold', in terms of modern sounds think the happy abandon of The Zutons, it's tight and it's infectious, top notch stuff.
Another large troupe of musicians who harness and exude nothing but happy vibes and smiles on the faces of their audience are the wonderful Stomptown Brass. An exhilarating live act, The Brass show once again that no effort is required when it comes to recreating that live energy in a studio setting, on 'I Got A Plan' swinging arrangements and mildly graveled vocals bring the funk and sunshine, play it loud peeps.
Stomptown Brass - Photo: Tara Thomas Photography
We then have the indietronic Bray duo Columbia Mills and their new single 'Head Start', the pair, who are still riding high on the wave of their critically acclaimed last single 'Battles', somehow plant early Springsteen stylings into an electro-rock setting. We also have the latest single from Cork rock act Paradox, and their new track 'All Life Matters', a critique of the imbalance of media coverage when it comes to war-resulting humanitarian crises unfolding around the world, appropriately sombre whilst also being hopeful at the same time.
To wrap things up we have the delightful Stoat from Dublin alt-pop and indie trio and their new single 'Trampolina', a group that meld upbeat rhythms and joviality with a wry look at everyday happenings. 'I met her on a stag weekend in Cork, she was with a headbanger from Dundalk, she was after fourteen Moscow mules, do ya wanna dance? And take me for a test drive, don't ya wanna dance? And makes us both feel a little alive?', what an opening verse!
Finally we have Dublin alternative rock act MYTH, and their searing powerhouse of a track, 'Idiots / Savages', think Placebo going heavy metal and you'll get an idea of what to expect sound-wise, whilst production sounds a little less polished than it might have been, this adds to the raw and fresh feel of the track in a good way.