Saturday, 20 May 2017

Photos: THUMPER with Chinese Newspaper and Just Mustard


All photos: Remy Connolly

Info: Bag of cans in hand, the first busload of about twelve of us set off just after 7pm from Custom House Quay to an unknown destination, the driver phoned his dispatch office and told them he was about to leave, he was bringing us to see 'some band called Thunder'. Rumours that we were headed to a field in Cavan were dispelled when we arrived at our destination, which I'm still not entirely sure where it was. In a large warehouse-type arts space just past Crosbie's Yard in North Strand at the heart of the Dublin docklands we were ready to settle in to a night of entertainment. 

Two bands I'd really wanted to see on many occasions over the past 12 months, headliners THUMPER and Dundalk's Just Mustard were about to be ticked off the 'must see live' list, and they were joined by the hugely enjoyable hard-rock sounds of Chinese Newspaper, who I had thankfully seen last year in support of Pranks at Whelans. Just Mustard kicked the night off, and how they lived up to my expectations and then some, whilst every song is notably distinct, they somehow blend all into one, seamlessly pulling you under, and half-way through their set you are under full mustard hypnosis.

Just Mustard
Pre-gig Just Mustard

Chinese Newspaper took to the stage next, the Navan trio are an extremely tight operation, loud, order within the disorder, and a cap doff must be made in the direction of drummer Nathan Merriman who should be considered one of the top cats behind a kit in this country at the moment. Alongside his peers in Hot Cops, Brass Phantoms, Bitch Falcon and Chris Ryan of Robocobra Quartet to name but a few, Merriman is a joy to watch. The chaps even treated us to a raucous version of The Pixies' 'Where Is My Mind' which went down very well with all in attendance.

And so to Dublin's THUMPER, a band that have been making waves more than ripples over the last year in particular, since the release of their sophomore EP Magnum Opuss, and inhabit the same relative space in terms of sound as Otherkin and Fangclub. It's always a nice bonus when small snippets of recorded music emerges from your subconscious in a live setting, and this happened frequently during THUMPER's set for me. From past favourites 'Dan The Man' to latest singles 'Fear of Art' and 'The Loser', the band ripped through their set, there were no drawn-out pauses between songs, this was all business. It wasn't long, maybe a third of the way through, when the audience decided it was probably time to go a bit bananas, this abandon and heightened energy transferred to the band, and now I was getting to see what I had heard about many times, the full THUMPER treatment. Great venue, top drawer line-up and a very happy crowd, we're starting to get used to this.

Below photos are in order of line-up last night, Just Mustard - Chinese Newspaper - THUMPER.

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