Colours of Ostrava 2017

August 4th, 2017 by

If we knew the world was about to end, there’d be a hell of a party, right? Nothing would matter anymore: we’d blast our music, spend time with our loved ones, and drink whatever was left in the cabinet ‘for a special occasion’. Then we’d do ‘that thing we love’ one more time, and rampage […]

Two Door Cinema Club – Trinity College, Dublin

July 13th, 2017 by

Shortly after the release of 2010 debut Tourist History, you could barely move for the blasting of Two Door Cinema Club. The Bangor trio’s debut album made little sense on many levels: full of almost flippantly fast pop-rock singles, it was perfect quick-fire advertising fodder, released on a label based in France that had dedicated […]

Paul Simon – 3Arena, Dublin

November 24th, 2016 by

It’s incredible to think that Paul Simon is 75, and still touring. It’s not so much the age, of course: for those who know the first thing about Simon, it seems obvious that he has too much love for the music to ever stop.  It’s more that Wednesday Morning, 3am (Simon & Garfunkel’s debut) was […]

Frank Turner – The Olympia Theatre, Dublin

November 21st, 2016 by

Positive Songs For Negative People, the title of Frank Turner’s latest album, is a wonderful summation of his post-Million Dead career to date. Riddled with modest malcontent, calls to arms and frustrated angst, Turner’s music, lyrically, often amounts to a (sometimes heavily personalised) insistence that the world can do better, aligned with a suspicion that […]

Green Day – Revolution Radio

October 18th, 2016 by

You know a Green Day song when you hear one. In their day, the three-chord three-piece were arguably punk’s great gateway drug. Through Dookie and Nimrod in particular, Billie Joe Armstrong and co walked a fine line: accessible yet regularly ragged; bolshy yet melodic. They were able to talk bitter politics and chuck in affected […]

Le Butcherettes’ Teri Gender Bender

October 10th, 2016 by

“I’m trying to write about anything other than the American presidential elections,” Teri Gender Bender tells State ahead of Le Butcherettes’ latest European tour. For a distinctly abrasive band from Mexico and based in Texas who describe themselves simply as “accessibly raw,” perhaps an exploration of the politics of Donald the ridiculous is just that […]

Stereophonics – RHK, Dublin

July 4th, 2016 by

Three albums deep, The Vaccines tone has changed dramatically from their scrappy, tongue-in-cheek indie-punk origins. When Justin Young penned the likes of ‘Norgaard’ and ‘If You Wanna’, it was a throwaway break from his folk career as Jay Jay Pistolet, and the tracks were largely in fun. Let’s face it, some of the early material […]

Ash – Whelans, Dublin

June 9th, 2015 by

You can almost smell the Strongbow. Laden with a blend of teenage angst and happy recollections, for those of us currently creeping reluctantly towards middle age Ash will always hold a certain place in our lives. ‘Girl From Mars’ was the soundtrack to summers discovering cider and music, parties and chemistry. They might still be […]

The Prodigy – The Day Is My Enemy

April 8th, 2015 by

It’s precisely two tracks in, when throwaway single ‘Nasty’ pumps through your speakers, that you start to wonder if The Day Is My Enemy is The Prodigy’s Chinese Democracy. “Nasty, nasty, Triple-X-rated, deep down, deep down, so raw!” screeches Flint on the single, in an explosion of ‘cool buzz’ verbal diarrhoea. It’s a nonsense of […]

Placebo – Olympia Theatre, Dublin

February 28th, 2015 by

There’s something about Placebo – or more specifically, Brian Molko. The Londoners are a wonderfully morose, throbbing headwrecker of a rock act, but it’s Molko’s lyrics that make them truly exceptional. He pours his soul into taking in heartache, androgyny, desolation and drugs, and tonight’s career spanning set does a great job of putting that […]

Queen – Forever

November 14th, 2014 by

Ready Freddie’s been dead for 23 years, and despite the occasional tour featuring a vocalist who’s… well… not Freddie, most would agree that Queen died back then, too. That leaves Queen Forever facing the same challenges levelled at many distantly posthumous releases: is there a reason this never saw the light of day? Is there […]

Lethal Dialect x JackKnifeJ – 1988

September 25th, 2014 by

Gone are the days when even informed opinions on Irish rap could be summed up with a chuckle, a bit of banter about Limerick’s comedy scene and the name checking of a cringe worthy assortment of misguided bedroom ‘talents’. Largely bought into our public consciousness by RTE drama Love/Hate, the embers of a pre-existing scene […]

Arctic Monkeys – Marlay Park

July 15th, 2014 by

Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not argued a poorly-named indie band’s lift off of a debut album. The days of Alex Turner as the reticent teenager, guitar strung high on his body like a Buddy Holly tribute act are far behind us. Spouting his sublime poetry of social commentary, Turner’s earliest outings […]