Round five in the State Vs… series and this month saw us up against label-du-jour, 2010’s newcomers, Popical Island. The Mercantile on Dame Street has recently undergone a facelift and we had the pleasure of moving into a freshly renovated gig-space, The Polecats were the first to play there just the night before.
Opening for State we had the hardest working, cock-rock band on the scene right now – Biggus Diccus, and it was a mighty phallic affair; porno-moustaches and cod-pieces in tow. All slapping bass and testicular riffs, the lads, led by the gutter-minded Declan Murray, played a heavy “rraaawwwwk” set including ‘The Great Divide’, ‘Weapons of Ass Destruction’, ‘Metrosexual’ and of course ‘Flagpole of Love’ from their free-to-download LP, Twelve Inches of Love. Sexy.
Popical Island released one of the most exciting records of the year so far, a compilation of 15 of Ireland’s finest indie-pop pickings. ‘Sketch!’ by Tieranniesaur was a definite stand-out track from the collection, an infectious summery pop gem that’s luckily not a one-off; the band have plenty more sunshine hits in their canon. This was only their third show together and their jangly quirk-pop is gathering well-deserved interest, ones to watch.
Also coming out of the Popical Island stable we had So Cow. Tuam man Brian Kelly is a bit more established than his label mates with three albums and a singles collection under his belt, as well as some pretty extensive touring around the US (where they recently and rather befittingly played alongside The Wedding Present). So Cow play punky, taut, lo-fi-pop with crisp guitars, tinny drumming and rye narratives, like Billy Bragg doing surf-pop… or something. ‘Random Girls’, ‘Halcyon Days’, ‘Shut Eye’ and Korean hit, ‘Moon Geun Young’ are hook-laden and a little bit ramshackle, brilliant stuff.
Once again, a big thank you to everyone for coming down. Watch out for details of our next State Vs… when we go head-to-head with our own Nialler9.
Photos by Sara Devine and Kieran Frost.
(There was a bit of hiccup during Tieranniesaur so we have no photos of them, sorry folks).