Master Musicians of Joujouka Festival

March 29th, 2013 by

The sixth annual Master Musicians of Joujouka Festival takes place this June 14th – 16th, in Morocco’s Rif Mountains. The first was held in 2008, to mark the 40th anniversary of Brian Jones recording the Masters in 1968 at the Rites of Pan Festival, excerpts of which were subsequently released in 1971 on the influential […]

Johnny Marr – Dublin

March 29th, 2013 by

‘Triumphant’ would be the adjective most readily applicable to Johnny Marr’s sold out return to Dublin show, a full-house Academy frequented by dewy-eyed men and women of a certain age, plus a smattering of younger folks. Drawing heavily from new album The Messenger, he plays – by my estimation – every song from it but […]

The Unthanks – Dun Laoghaire

March 4th, 2013 by

Playing to a sold-out Pavilion Theatre, The Unthanks are depleted tonight. That is, they are not carrying their usual rhythm section, and Chris Price has decamped from bass to acoustic guitar. It leads to a more subdued performance than usual, with Rachel and Becky backed only by core regulars Adrian McNulty on piano, Niopha Keegan […]

Mark Eitzel – Dublin

February 27th, 2013 by

As a live act, Mark Eitzel is known for his self-deprecating humour, especially more so when performing solo rather than when fronting American Music Club (which seems unlikely ever to happen again, given the death of and/or reluctance of other former members to get involved). Tonight the reflexive slagging is to the fore, with a […]

Julian Cope – Saint Julian

February 8th, 2013 by

Consider these quotations from Julian Cope, which can be found in a Q & A on his excellently maintained website, Head Heritage: Q: What do you think of the current spate of re-issues of your old material? A: Oh man, I can’t stand that shit. How many times can they re-issue the same crap? Q: […]

Aimee Mann – Dublin

February 5th, 2013 by

What happens when a great talent who has perfected her approach becomes trapped by the very perfection of that approach? What if Bowie had stalled at Ziggy? No blue-eyed soul Philly; no industrial Berlin. For me, prime time Aimee Mann was back at the start of her solo career, with the first fine flush of […]

Jane Birkin – Dublin

January 29th, 2013 by

The prospect of Jane Birkin performing the songs of Serge Gainsbourg is not the easiest show for me to review, since my knowledge of the composer’s work is mostly limited to his dark, funky 1971 masterpiece Histoire Du Melody Nelson and, inevitably, ‘Je T’aime.. Moi Non Plus’ (both of which featured Jane), while my acquaintance […]

Thurston Moore & John Moloney – Dublin

January 21st, 2013 by

It’s a late start at Whelan’s, with doors not opening until 8.45, and the main act not on stage until 10, although they do play a set which lasts until an unheard of 11.30. Are we bending the rules here? Have Caught On Tape brought normal Stateside gig schedules across the Atlantic with them? What […]

Neil Young & Crazy Horse – Psychedelic Pill

November 23rd, 2012 by

Some notes towards an understanding of Neil Young & Crazy Horse’s new album, Psychedelic Pill, his 35th studio record… * * * It’s a double, and a long one, nudging the hour and a half mark. Some will say, too long. * * * It’s got some very long songs on it, as well. Of […]

Villagers – Dublin

November 15th, 2012 by

Despite their time away from home, there is little doubt about the continuing popularity of Conor J O’Brien and his Villagers project – if the sold out throng in Whelan’s is anything to judge by at any rate. There is still a queue around the corner into Wexford Street at 9pm, and the venue is […]

Jack White – Dublin

November 2nd, 2012 by

Jack’s back, on Halloween night. In fact, he tells us he would have been here earlier, except that he had to help some kids down the road build a bonfire. But where’s the powder blue suit he’s been sporting all through this tour in support of Blunderbuss? Has he decided to leave it in the […]

Mavis Staples…”I’m gonna sing as long as the good Lord lets me”

October 25th, 2012 by

The word legend is, if goes without saying, a much misused one but when it comes to Mavis Staples it’s wholly appropriate. Considering this is someone who, as the youngest member of The Staple Singers, along with family patriarch Roebuck ‘Pops’ Staples and sisters Cleotha and Yvonne, was in the eye of the Civil Rights […]

Celebration Day vs Crossfire Hurricane

October 22nd, 2012 by

Two vintage rock warhorses premiered new movies this week, with Led Zeppelin’s Celebration Day showing in cinemas on Wednesday evening, followed by The Rolling Stones’ Crossfire Hurricane on Thursday. The former was a once-off showing, with a DVD release to follow on November 19th, while the latter will go on general cinematic release soon. Relations […]

John Cale – Dublin

October 8th, 2012 by

So John Cale rolls into The Button Factory for the first night of a short tour of ‘these isles’, a show rescheduled from last May that postponed due to on-going post production work on his just released new album, Shifty Adventures in Nookie Wood. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the business-like, if polite, 90 minute set is weighted […]