All this week we’ll be turning our attention towards Electric Picnic which starts on Friday in Stradbally, Co. Laois. To kick things off, here’s a look at some of the Irish artists we recommend you check out at the festival.
1. Villagers (Saturday)
Nominated for a Mercury Prize with his debut album Becoming a Jackal, Conor J. O’Brien has been blazing a trail this summer with numerous festival appearances and garnering well deserved critical acclaim. Confident and assured, the Villagers live set with backing band members is a powerful experience.
2. Cathy Davey (Saturday)
Cathy Davey, the spell-binding singer/songwriter returns to Stradbally after scoring No.1. album, The Nameless, earlier this year . Bringing her unique breathy vocal style to the stage, Davey will likely beguile and woo the audience. One of the best female vocalists in Ireland at the moment.
3. Imelda May (Saturday)
The surprise hit of Electric Picnic last year, the Crawdaddy stage was rammed to see Liberties girl Imelda May take to the stage. A year on, with a couple of huge live dates under her belt including a gig at the O2 in Dublin and new album Mayhem on the way, expect an even bigger crowd to see this rockabilly big band experience.
Ripping up the stage Belfast band And So I Watched You From Afar, are one of the most energetic exciting live Irish acts to see. Currently working on their second album and attempting to play a gig in every venue in the world, this instrumental rock outfit will not disappoint.
4. The Frames (Saturday)
Glen Hansard, the prodigal son of The Frames returns to his band to kick off their 20th Anniversary Tour. Attracting devoted followers, the favourite live hits will include ‘Revelation’ , ‘Fake’, and ‘Lay Me Down’. Although they divide opinion, their live set features buckets of sheer emotional energy.
5. The Rubberbandits feat. Crystal Swing (Friday)
Random but strangely compelling, the mix of Limerick mischief makers The Rubberbandit with YouTube sensations Crystal Swing made many people scratch their heads but having drafted in Richie Kavanagh for a special slot at the Bandits’ Christmas show, it’s not surprising. Love them or hate them Crystal Swing must be one of the most talked about acts this year and combined with The Rubberbandits’ unique but hilarious stage show is one not to be missed.
See also: Kormac’s Big Band, Sacred Animals, Low Sea, Cloud Castle Lake, Channel One, The Redneck Manifesto & The Mighty Stef.