Monday, 9 July 2018

Irish Playlist #032: Pearse McLoughlin & Nocturnes, Proper Micro NV, MYTH, Hvmmingbyrd and more

Nocturnes - Confetti
Pearse McLoughlin & Nocturnes

Info: It's only been 1 week since the last round-up of quality single releases from Irish acts here at REMY and the barrel is over-flowing once again, long may it continue. 

1) Pearse McLoughlin & Nocturnes - 'Confetti'

To kick-off we have an invigorating ear-worm from Sligo's Pearse McLoughlin & Nocturnes, very reminiscent of Scandi electro-pop, it hums with a crisp beauty that disarms any resistance you may have. As early as the 40 second mark I'm hearing Eno movements which reverberate right until the end, it's understated, never goes too grand, but at the same time is very memorable.

2) Lowlight Gathering - 'Only You'

Gonna put my neck out hear, very willingly, and say that Lowlight Gathering's 'Only You' is easily one of the singles of the year. Why? It's not immediately noticeable on first listen, but very quickly 'Only You' from the Monaghan quintet rests very easy on the soul. It's not complicated, but often simplicity is harder to achieve and leaves you more exposed, here the indie-folk troupe nail it with a killer chorus.

3) Proper Micro NV - Dot Dot Dot

Beats n' clicks, clicks n' beats. Rory Hall has a natural gift when it come to delivering ambient electronica as Proper Micro NV, whilst imposing his personality and message via an assertive vocal that stares you right in the face. On top of that, his intuitive instinct for the groove and channelling of rn'b sounds continues to grow with every release.

Proper Micro NV - Dot Dot Dot

4) MYTH - 'Maiden'

Heavy, pondering, instrumental, you never know which MYTH is going to show up, with 'Maiden' the band go full pelt and devour any inhibitions they had previously to embrace their inner heavy rock, but it doesn't stymie there. The opening crunch quickly motors into hypnotic vocals and rhythms, gently, up, and down. The band indulge themselves in both parts of their musical map, and it levels out perfectly by track's end. The song's title and their dual lyrical use of prey / pray encapsulate the theme behind the sound.

5) Hvmmingbyrd - 'Prisms'

On occasion, as a music fan, I like to be taken to new places, as I'm sure most people do. Hvmmingbyrd have done that very directly in recent times with singles 'Gozo' and 'Papillon'. The former saw me wandering around narrow white-washed streets, and the second was a bit more psychedelic and out there. 'Prisms' is still as bright as those two singles, but it ushers me into a low-lit club circa 1992 (I was only 12 then btw so not possible). Aside from the visual, their latest single feels like the most life-affirming, it's very real in delivery and I can't help but feel that if a U.K. act released this track they wouldn't be heralded across local and national stations.

Saint Sister - 'Twin Peaks'

6) Saint Sister - 'Twin Peaks'

Saint Sister's 'Twin Peaks' is inescapably beautiful and unexpectedly familiar in terms of recording what we once knew, but have since forgotten. Lyrically something that grabbed me was the line "All my friends are in Berlin now", as the destination du jour to better yourself musically (why not, it worked for Bowie). Overall there's an irresistible smoothness and wit attached to 'Twin Peaks' which makes it a very lovable track.

7) Jealous of the Birds - 'Russian Doll'

Portadown solo act Naomi Hamilton, aka Jealous of the Birds, released her latest single 'Russian Doll' just over a week ago. Like a mish-mash of Sacramento lo-fi indie icons Cake and Weezer circa Blue album with a dash of London Calling, it's full of old-school black leather jacket coolness and suave. I would imagine Hamilton had a lot of fun recording this number, all the way down to that snappy hand-clap, it's infectiously up-lifting despite it's apathetic modus operandi.

8) Will de Búrca - 'Electric Light' 

Dublin electronic artist Will de Búrca is back following his excellent 2017 album Embedded which topped many end of year lists, with single 'Electric Light'. Tycho influences á la 2014's Awake album abound, de Búrca throws a good hefty amount of guitar rhythm in here in comparison to his previous outings, and the results are a twinkling synth-ripple on a sunset coastline. This aesthetic is captured in the real-time video of Dublin's Docklands shot in Clontarf below.

Will de Búrca - 'Electric Light'

9) Gavin Glass - 'Matador'

Taken from his forthcoming album Ocus Pocus which is out this Friday, 13th of July, Gavin Glass' new single 'Matador' is a love song which plays optimism and youthful naivety off each other. At its opening the vocal effect reminds me of Richard Hawley crooning, and that mellow drift continues until the first minute. From there, the music is whipped up into a frenzy of jangling electric guitars and snapping percussion. A comb in the mirror summer banger if ever there was one.

10) James Vincent McMorrow - 'Me and My Friends'

James Vincent McMorrow's latest single 'Me and My Friends' is a celebratory ode inspired in part by the birth of his newborn daughter, and also perhaps a wry look at adulthood, how it creeps up on you, but upon reflection, it's a good place to be. This is the type of track that I can just get on board with though without knowing anything about its background, and it's a lot of fun to come up with your own explanation and misinterpretations. More tropical than Post Tropical, JVMcM delivers a deliciously care-free, rn'b-charged 3 minutes and 20 seconds of happiness. This is also the song I would put on and dance to in an awkward situation to make everything better.

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