There was much wailing and gnashing of the teeth in Paul's corner of HP Towers recently when his beloved Kildare footballers once again failed to secure promotion to Division One of the NFL. Nonetheless, the Newbridge native predicts big things for Kieran McGeeney's charges this summer and feels that a Leinster title isn't out of the question. Of late, Paul has been grooving to Liars, Deerhunter, Tyler the Creator, Flying Lotus and Radiohead's The King of Limbs. He is also a big fan of Assassin's Creed, Alexa Chung and cartoonists Hugleikur Dagsson and Andy Riley.
Latest Articles by Paul Nolan
Art-rock mavericks The Horrors on their album of the year contender V, touring with Nine Inch Nails and collaborating with Gorillaz.
One of the most influential hip hop groups of all time, A Tribe Called Quest are sure to produce a barnstorming performance.
The debut album from rock-hip hop supergroup Prophets Of Rage is an incendiary state of the nation address.
Alternative state of the union address from rock/hip-hop supergroup.
With Games Of Thrones’ seventh season having just debuted to massive viewing figures and rapturous critical acclaim, uber-fan Paul Nolan drags himself away from the sofa long enough to salute the series’ unique mix of political intrigue, radical characterisation and atmospheric storytelling – whilst not forgetting the steamy sex and ultra-violence, of course.
Cult US hip-hop act produce two stunning new albums
Canadian art-rock troupe make impressive return.
The Australian dance outfit made a long awaited return to Ireland, playing a stunning set of material from the classic Since I Left You and last year’s Wildflower
Paul Nolan was on-hand as Thom Yorke and co. celebrated the 20th anniversary of OK Computer and threw several unexpected classics into the set
Set to be interviewed by Florence Welch at Borris House this weekend, the writer’s Cork roots, his love of Joyce, Sofia Coppola’s classic adaptation of The Virgin Suicides, and his views on Trump-era America are all on the agenda as he talks to Paul Nolan
German techno heroes Booka Shade discuss collaborating with Irish singer Craig Walker on their new album, DJing in world-renowned Berlin club Berghain, and playing huge support slots with Depeche Mode. Interview: Paul Nolan
The state of British politics, Warp Records parties and the Chicago Cubs’ World Series win are all on the agenda as Maximo Park frontman Paul Smith discusses the band’s new album, Risk To Exist.
Starring The Mighty Boosh's Julian Barratt as a down and out actor called on to reprise his most famous role as a TV detective, Mindhorn is arguably the comedy of the year. Director Sean Foley and co-writer Simon Farnaby- who also starred in the Boosh- talk about paying homage to their favourite '80s shows and getting Steve Coogan onboard.
Throbbing Gristle’s Cosey Fanni Tutti discusses her superb memoir Art Sex Music, which reflects on an incredible career that once saw the group branded as “wreckers of civilisation”.
Hip-hop superstar delivers second consecutive masterpiece.
Cracking return from animated quartet
Stellar effort from cult English art-rocker
Onstage bust-ups, classic records and performing live with Scarlett Johansson are all on the agenda as the iconic Jesus and Mary Chain discuss their brilliant comeback album, Damage and Joy.
Excellent comeback from pioneering alt.rockers.
Classic album from German electronica duo gets the reissue treatment
In February, one of cinema’s greatest ever directors, Hollywood legend Martin Scorsese, arrived in Dublin to receive Trinity College’s prestigious gold medal award. Paul Nolan was on-hand for Scorsese’s public interview, during which studio battles, the future of cinema, Taxi Driver, Leonardo Di Caprio, the Rolling Stones, and the director’s eagerly awaited upcoming reunion with Robert De Niro, The Irishman, were all on the conversational agenda.
Paul Nolan reports on the legendary filmmaker's Phil Soc encounter, during which Leonardo DiCaprio, the Rolling Stones, Taxi Driver and his upcoming reunion with Robert DeNiro, The Irishman, were all on the conversational agenda
Underwhelming effort from US indie-pop duo
Hot Press caught up with White Lies following the release of their fourth album Friends.
Canadian singer delivers quality electro grooves
UK art rocker struts his stuff.
Superlative effort from US hip hop duo
Art-rock maverick Mik Artistik on unlikely adventures in Longford, being friends with leatherclad legend Zodiac Mindwarp, and acting as guest frontman for pioneering Krautrockers Faust.
Read our verdict on the Rolling Stones' hotly anticipated comeback album.
Best-selling author Robert Harris discusses his new Vatican-set thriller Conclave, his friendships with Roman Polanski and Tony Blair, and his dismay after Brexit.
Pat Shortt excels in Rising-themed comedy.
Director Declan Recks discusses his excellent new film, The Flag, which takes a comedic look at the 1916 commemorations.
Director Declan Recks discusses his excellent new film, The Flag, which takes a comedic look at the 1916 commemorations.
Musician and poet Kate Tempest discusses drugs, depression and creating one of the year’s best albums, Let Them Eat Chaos.
Indie veterans deliver Bona Fide Dud
Excellent effort from hip-hop star
By JM Coetzee (Harvill Secker)
Impressive third album from la art rockers.
Cult soundtrack finally gets official release.
US artist Fantastic Negrito has been earning serious kudos of late for his album The Last Days Of Oakland, a bewitching mix of blues, soul and funk. The album title refers to the home town of the singer – whose real name is Xavier Dphrepaulezz – and several of the songs critique the city’s ongoing gentrification.
We're up bright and early to begin Day 2 of the Stradbally spectacular – and already, a plan of attack is beginning to take shape, with Noel Gallagher, Joey Badass and the sensational LCD Soundsystem leading the way
The Electric Picnic-bound Savages on why they’re inspired by world music, playing with LCD Soundsystem at Red Rocks, and getting the thumbs-up from Lars Ulrich and Trent Reznor.
Jonah Hill excels in remarkable real life tale
Seinfeldia, by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong (Simon & Schuster)
Based on an extraordinary true life tale, Todd Phillips' latest film War Dogs is a black comedy about the international arms trade. He talks about truth being stronger than fiction, the rise of Donald Trump and hanging with Bono and Tom Cruise.
Best known as a columnist with the Sunday Independent, ex-Hot Press contributor Declan Lynch is also an acclaimed author. He has just published his first novel in nearly 10 years, The Ponzi Man, which tells the story of titular fraudster John Devlin.
Simon Rich (SERPENT’S TAIL)
Paul Nolan reviews Lionel Shriver's The Mandibles
Irvine Welsh has returned to one of his most iconic characters, Trainspotting nutter Francis Begbie. He talks about peeling back the layers of the notorious sociopath, class divisions in the UK and the recent Hillsborough verdict.
BRILLIANT AMBIENT ELECTRO FROM GERMAN PRODUCER
Epic post-rockers Sigur Rós talk about hanging out with porn stars, appearing on Game of Thrones and the darker direction of their new music.
Disappointing effort from German electro duo
It may not be up there with their very best albums, but – with hints of Ariel Pink, Boards of Canada and Vangelis on display – Thom Yorke and the boys have once again produced something very special with their highly anticipated new album, A Moon Shaped Pool
His father Stephen Roche won the Tour de France. But while he hasn't quite achieved that eminence in cycling, Irishman Nicolas Roche has been up there among the top professionals in the sport for almost a decade now. In a fascinating interview, he talks about drugs, Paul Kimmage, Maria Sharapova – and lots more besides...
As they gear up for their Forbidden Fruit headliner; Underworld's Karl Hyde talks to Paul Nolan about the trainspotting sequel and why Bowie & Eno mean so much to them.
Excellent debut from Irish hip-hop crew
Savages are one of the most innovative rock bands to come out of the UK in recent years. They discuss their tumultuous second album and standing out from the crowd. WORDS Paul Nolan
Savages are one of the most innovative rock bands to come out of the UK in recent years. They discuss their tumultuous second album and standing out from the crowd.
A one-of-a-kind talent, the creator of The Larry Sanders Show is mourned by fans and friends all over the globe
From the A-Team to knight Rider via Top Of The Pops and Max Headroom, the '80s truly was a decade of highs, lows and inbetweens
David Holmes & Friends indulge their love of classic soundtracks & '60s girl groups
Donegal folk-pop duo Little Hours have just joined Kodaline and Walking On Cars as part of the stellar line-up for the next Jameson Bow St. Sessions gig. Singer John Doherty takes TIME OUT from working on the band’s debut album to tell Paul Nolan why he’s hugely excited about the show.
At just 28 years of age, Compton-born rapper Kendrick Lamar has been hailed as one of the most important cultural figures of the modern era. But where did he come from? Who inspired him musically? And what is the creative background to the Hot Press Album of the Year 2015, To Pimp A Butterfly? As we prepare to welcome him to Ireland for Longitude this summer, Paul Nolan explains the global importance of this extraordinary phenomenon...
Thirty three year-old Rob Doyle caused a considerable splash 18 months ago with his debut novel, Here Are The Young Men, an uber-dark account of Dublin teens coming of age in the Celtic Tiger era.
Online satirical phenomenon Waterford Whispers have just put out a book compiling their best material from 2015. Founder Colm Williamson talks about his plans to venture into live performance next year.
Impressive collaboration between National frontman and US alt. rock scenester
Metropolis-bound with his group - and Jimmy Fallon's house band - The Roots, Questlove discusses his upbringing in Philadelphia, the current state of hip hop and his friendship with Jay Z and Prince.
UK indie supergroup get their psych groove on
Quality psychedelia from US alt. rock stars
More stylish punk-funk from Yannis and the boys
The National’s Bryce Dessner on his unique collaboration with Cork Opera House WORDS Paul Nolan
Darkly mesmeric offering from veteran dance duo
Skinhead outsiders Slaves talk anger, iPhones and approving tweets from Robbie Williams.
A pop extravaganza in Iveagh Gardens.
Stunning comeback from celebrated dance act
Franz Ferdinand hook-up with Sparks – archness not exactly in short supply
They captured the hearts of Irish music lovers with their spirited debut album. With their second LP on the way Hot Press travels to Iceland to speak exclusively to chart-topping folk rockers Of Monsters and Men.
Electronica up-and-comer Matador talks about his move from Berlin to Dublin and why sometimes you have to give it your all in order to engage an audience.
Stunning debut from Las Vegas dance wunderkind
As The Cribs storm back with a cracking new album, frontman Gary Jarman talks run-ins with Dave Grohl and having indie royalty record in his basement.
Superb second album from Mercury-winning hip hop trio
Excellent second album from hip hop wunderkind
Patchy offering from US emo outfit
Impressive debut solo effort from Arcade Fire man
Shoegaze-influenced Seattle quartet stick with the programme
Welcome return for punk-funk anarchists
Underwhelming comeback for influential post-punks
Alt. rock legend's most recent album gets a makeover
Darkly mesmeric electronica from London groove mechanic
Patchy Debut from NYC Rapper
IMPRESSIVE EFFORT FROM HIP-HOP PIONEER
We chat to the up and coming R'n'B sensation set to take the world by storm in the months ahead.
UNDERWHELMING COLLECTION OF MACCA COVERS
DECENT IF UNSPECTACULAR EFFORT FROM NYC ART-ROCKERS
With two hugely popular albums under his belt in Swim and Our Love, dance producer Caribou, aka Dan Snaith, tells Paul Nolan why he still flies Ryanair and discusses his friendship with tour buddies Radiohead.
STELLAR EFFORT FROM POP STAR OF THE MOMENT
STADIUM-READY POWER ROCK FROM DAVE GROHL AND CO.
Hang on a mo’, has a familiar face from Love/Hate just sprouted whiskers?
Impressive comeback from Irish folk star.
EXCELLENT LP FROM ALT.ROCK LEGEND
Haunting glitchtronica from Radiohead frontman
VINTAGE CHAMBER-POP FROM ICONIC SINGER
ICONIC SINGER FAILS TO SCALE PAST HEIGHTS ON BRACE OF NEW ALBUMS
Brilliant comeback from legendary electronic producer.
TERRIFIC CHAMBER-POP FROM SEATTLE MAVERICK
He’s the country’s most controversial pundit, his opinions on football dividing opinion and prompting praise and outrage in equal measure. In a rare interview, Joe Brolly talks about cynicism in football, insists he isn’t biased towards Ulster sides – and tells the true story behind his recent on-air spat with RTÉ’s Des Cahill.
For his new Sky TV series Baz Ashmawy set out to show his mother the meaning of true terror. Instead, he found out just how close he was to her
Award winning comic Aisling Bea on switching between sitcoms and live performance, reconnecting with the Abbeyleix massive and unpleasant horsefly encounters.
Sublime second album from avant hip-hop duo
As bruising crime drama Ray Donovan returns, star Liev Schreiber speaks exclusively about the show’s universal themes and why he was attracted to the part of an anti-hero.
MORE DARKLY ROMANTIC TORCH SONGS FROM POP STARLET
Underwhelming effort by rap superstar
Moody soundscapes from French avant garde maestro
Wailing punk from Canadian extremists. Unlikely to be covered by One Direction
A former boxer, these days Dublin comic Patser Murray is kept busy doing cameos on Love/Hate, performing improvised skits with Jimmy Carr – and delivering some top-notch stand-up too, of course.
He’s the hottest newcomer in techno, with a fanbase that includes Lily Allen and Bat for Lashes. But for Duke Dumont, one ambition remains unfulfilled: to write England’s World Cup anthem
ALT. ROCK QUEEN SUMMONS THE SPIRIT OF GRUNGE
Irresisible nu-disco grooves from Norwegian dance wizard
Impressive solo effort from Blur and Gorillaz mastermind
Superb collaboration between LA hip hop duo
They're the hot new thing in hard-charging duos, with a ringing endorsement from Arctic Monkeys and a sound that splits the difference between White Stripes and The Kills. Royal Blood talk hype, hopes and why you don't need a guitar to rock your audience's block off.
TV viewing habits are changing radically in our web-enabled world. Now broadcaster Sky is tackling changes in the market by offering subscribers a more interactive experience.
EDM God proves to be fallible
Irresistible electro grooves from Irish producer
Pharrell crowns his comeback with pop tour de force
As he prepares to take his Banana Kingdom show out on Irish tour, Andrew Maxwell talks politics, aliens, Mormon sheriffs, Russell Brand and comedians you want to give a wide berth.
Damon Albarn oversees superb collaboration between Western & Malian musicians
Karl Spain on his admiration of Zach Galifianakis, gigging with Flight Of The Conchords and the Martin O’Neill/Roy Keane dream ticket
With Irish rugby’s ‘golden generation’ inching towards retirement it’s time for a new batch of players to step forward. Chief amongst the latest crop is Leinster winger Dave Kearney, best known for being on the receiving end of Paul O’Connell’s boot last season. He talks about the sport’s remarkable increase in popularity.
Superb effort from Australian electro-rockers
TONIGHT, MATTHEW, WE’RE GOING TO BE ARCADE FIRE!
Canadian Rockers get their funk groove on with James Murphy
PREDICTABLE EFFORT FROM ENGLISH DANCE TRIO
With a Mercury nomination under the belt, it’s all happening for beat happy twins Disclosure. They talk about overnight success and their surreal falling out with Azealia Banks
The doyen of British satirists, Armando Iannucci helped create Alan Partridge and gave the world swear-machine Malcolm Tucker. Now he has set out to conquer America, with his inside-the-beltway comedy Veep. Speaking exclusively to Hot Press, he talks about his feud with the UK spin doctor Alastair Campbell - supposedly the inspiration for Tucker – translating his humour to America and having the real Veep, Joe Biden, as a fan.
Despite having once dropped the ‘British Isles’ bomb at Vicar Street, British-Iranian comedian Omid Djalili is sensitive to national identities, a topic he explores at length in his new show
MIXED COVERS ALBUM FROM ALT.ROCK VETERAN
EXPERIMENTAL AVANT ELECTRO. UNLIKELY TO BE COVERED BY ONE DIRECTION
Not A Classic EFFORT FROM VETERAN GROOVE TECHNICIAN
They’re the frazzled blues rockers with the funny last name and a fanbase that includes British politicians. Neo-grungsters Drenge talk about the hype, their Irish roots and how it feels to be championed by a middle-aged politician in a suit
Terrific Effort From Welsh Veterans
They’re not ashamed to cite Phil Collins and Whitney Houston as influences, but a love for terminally uncool music has done little to dent the progress of The 1975.
IMPRESSIVE NEO-SOUL OPUS FROM CANADIAN PRODUCER
What’s going on with New Zealand pop troupe The Naked And Famous? They used to be so sweet and adorable. Now they’re channelling scary techno-goths Nine Inch Nails and have even roped in the band’s former bassist and producer. They explain their surprise transition...
Optimistic with a vengeance, comedian Adam Hills channels his personal good vibrations into a hilarious new show
Impressive Neo-Soul Opus From Canadian Producer
Latest DFA Signings Deliver Superb Debut
Another Stellar Effort From The Odd Future Stable
Veteran Producer Gets His Party Groove On
Sun-Kissed Groves From Chillwave Guru...
Stellar Return From Industrial Godhead
Solo effort from Wu Tang Clan member gets remix treatment...
Having scooped a coveted Fringe First award at Edinburgh, Donal O’Kelly’s play Fionnuala is set to bring fresh publicity to the controversial Corrib gasline project...
Solid If Unspectacular Effort From Wu Tang Clan Member
The king of confessional indie rock, Eels leader Mark ‘E’ Everett talks super-star collaborations and why he won’t be dusting down his tent after playing this year’s Electric Picnic...
He’s had 24 million YouTube hits for ‘Pale Kids Rap Fast’, but LA rhymer Watsky is determined not to go down as a one-hit novelty...
Arty, experimental electro. Unlikely to be covered on The Voice...
Switching things up on his new LP, soul singer Mayer Hawthorne has gone in a rap direction. He talks about working with Pharrell Williams and his friendship with Kanye West...
Low key effort from LA folk collective...
Indiependence-bound DJ duo The Dead Prezidents have been generating quite a buzz thanks to their irreverent attitude and onstage antics...
Their American-influenced second record received a kicking in their native UK. Rather than take it personally indie urchins Tribes see the hostility as part of a wider media agenda against guitar music...
Cracking Electro Tunes From Veteran Dance Duo...
Superb second album from cult film director...
Fine effort from Irish Indie maverick...
He thought about quitting music. Instead Gold Panda has bounced back with one of the year’s finest dance LPs. He talks about the commercial growth of EDM and how South America has influenced his writing...
Eclectic collection from US punk supergroup...
Solid offering from English Indie-pop duo...
With their third album Field Of Reeds, These New Puritans confirm their standing as one of the great art rock ensembles of the era...
Superb second album from English wizards...
Brilliant return from electronic duo...
Return to form for trip-hop legend...
Gaslight Anthem frontman Brian Fallon on playing with Eddie Vedder, performing a special set for Letterman and the appearance of 24’s Elisha Cuthbert in the band’s latest video
British Sea Power are back with a joyously eccentric new record and a polar bear that, ceiling permitting, will be coming to a venue near you soon...
Underwhelming effort from Superstar producer...
Excellent outing for Wu-Tang Clan member...
Electrifying dance-punk action...
Wailing punk from San Diego trio...
The shadowy side of rural life is evoked in the stunning debut from Ciaran Collins. Here, he discusses his complex feelings towards the countryside and the tradition of grisly novels set in the Irish sticks...
Impressive efford from art-pop legend...
There are less jagged edges on his latest album but that doesn’t mean Iron & Wine’s Sam Beam has mellowed...
Impressive effort from pop icon...
In Dublin for the Jameson St. Patricks Live gig, would-be stadium rockers Bombay Bicycle Club talk about their electronic new direction, cutting loose in India and participating in Damon Albarn’s Africa Express...
Impressive Return To Form For NYC Rockers...
Terrific Return from Britpop Luminaries...
She’s one of the most controversial figures in Irish comedy. And now Katherine Lynch is branching into traditional music inspired by, among others, her famous grand uncle Patrick Kavanagh...
To complete that slightly painful racing analogy – these Foals are now prizewinning thoroughbreds...
Brilliant comeback from rock icon...
Moody electronica from Trent Reznor's new ensemble...
Dublin-bound Mock The Week panellist Andy Parsons on Frankie Boyle’s controversies, Dara Ó Briain’s stag night, and why he’d prefer to be pottering in his shed than doing stand-up.
Excellent collection of psych-pop from real estate guitarist...
Underwhelming debut effort from London indie outfit...
On the rise indie rockers Bastille discuss tour bus bad behaviour, their passion for Twin Peaks and why pop shouldn’t be a dirty word...
Let's talk about Sexsmith
Stellar effort from alt. rock veteran...
Your guide to the year ahead in comedy...
Writing sitcoms, ignoring conspiracy nuts and working for Robbert Murdoch with everyone's favorite grouch Jack Dee...
Impressive debut from Dublin hip hop producer...
For his new novel TC Boyle abandons his trademark irony and takes a more naturalistic approach. He explains why he doesn’t want to be the literary equivalent of a clapped-out rock band playing the same hits over and over words Paul Nolan photo Trevor Nolan
Australian band go on a tragical mystery tour.
Dark electro odyssey from French dance wizard
Blaring club tunes from english dance producer.
BLARING CLUB TUNES FROM ENGLISH DANCE PRODUCER
Stellar effort from super-producer and ambient guru...
It’s been a hectic 12 months for English art-rock quartet Alt-J, who have gone from obscurity to music press darlings and Mercury Prize favourites, thanks to their UK top 20 debut album, An Awesome Wave. Alt-J’s rollercoaster year continues with a US tour, which is where Hot Press catches up with the group’s keyboard player, Gus Unger-Hamilton. The previous night they'd played a show in Las Vegas, which, unsurprisingly, proved a somewhat surreal setting.
Lately a cuddly quiz show panel member, Alan Davies is going back to his first love, stand-up. He explains the rationale for the decision, but has less to say about his controversial comments on the Hillsborough Liverpool FC tragedy.
Solid offering from canadian groove mechanic
Synth-pop icons the Pet Shop Boys are back with their eleventh studio album, Elysium. It is another excellent collection of electro tunes that are by turns celebratory, witty and moving.
Taking time out from a stay-cation funnyman Jason Byrne talks about his love of Ikea, channelling David Copperfield and sharing the stage with a naked PJ Gallagher.
As The Charlatans prepare to perform their landmark Tellin’ Stories album at Castlepalooza, Tim Burgess talks about the record’s troubled origins and his foray into breakfast cereals.
Outstanding retrospective collection from britpop icons
Veteran electronica duo Orbital are Stradbally-bound, where they’ll be airing tracks from their first album in eight years, Wonky. They talk about getting back in the studio, hanging with Roger Moore and their rave-era escapades.
Having recently become a father and conscious of the legacy he’ll leave behind, Newton Faulkner returns to “have a positive impact on people’s brains.”
He’s the funnyman and MC who doesn’t mind getting into a stand-off with rowdy punters. Steve Cummins explains how a Limerick upbringing made him the man he is today.
Return to form for alt. rock legend
Underwhelming effort from Canadian garage-rock duo
He’s a leading light of northern comedy. Ahead of his appearance at Glasgowbury Colin Geddis talks about cracking the scene up north, keeping hecklers under control and making his name via YouTube.
Familiar to most comedy fans as Murray, the quirky manager of Flight Of The Conchords in the duo’s self-titled television series, Rhys Darby arrives in Ireland shortly to perform his stand-up show This Way To Spaceship, based on his book of the same name.
Superb comeback album from soul legend
Dr. Matt Destruction still not struck off by medical council
The vibrant Leeside comedy scene has a new young man in a hurry. Ahead of his first visit to Edinburgh Chris Kent talks about cracking them up down south.
Frankly, I doubt I’ll see a better gig all year.
Operating under the Shit Robot alias Dubliner Marcus Lambkin is part of the LCD Soundystem inner circle. He talks about hanging with the Beastie Boys, his friendship with dance-funk guru James Murphy and why the old ways of doing things in music don’t cut it anymore.
For his latest project Alexei Sayle recalls a childhood steeped in Stalinism. How did he manage to extract laughs from so serious a subject?
He is the downbeat songwriter who has transcended his origins in Velvet Underground to become a fascinating artist in his own right. John Cale talks about his surprisingly melodic new project and his surprise presence on the Queen’s honours list.
Funnyman musician Paddy Cullivan discusses Ireland’s first musical comedy awards event – and the highwire act that is balancing melody and laughter.
Remix guru gets his rock groove on but fails to impress
US post-rockers get the remix treatment, with excellent results
Iconic rockers gets his jazz groove on
Underwhelming effort from LA dubstep producer.
Iconic rocker gets his jazz groove on.
Kings of chill-out Air discuss their latest album, inspired by a classic of silent sci-fi cinema.
They’re the comedy hip hop troupe ripping it up in Blighty. Ireland’s Abandoman talk about the challenge of making rhyming funny and discuss larking about with Alexa Chung at Daisy Lowe’s 21st. As you do.
The votes are in, the embossed envelope is in our sweaty clutches, the drum-roll has begun. Yes, it could only be the Hot Press Golden Giggle Awards. But who will walk away with the coveted gongs?
Ahead of his upcoming Dublin dates, Stephen Merchant talks about his new series with Ricky Gervais, his favourite Irish comedians and the engima wrapped in a mystery wrapped in man-pudge that is Karl Pilkington.
Eclectic offering from '80s synth-pop maestro.
Legendary cult filmmaker gets his groove on.
NYC singer knows what the folk he's doing.
Grunge veterans compile live tracks and rarities to accompany Cameron Crow Doc.
Alt. rock landmark gets the reissue treatment on its 20th anniversary.
From humble beginnings Canadian comic Craig Campbell has gone on to become one of the most respected pros in the business. He talks about taking the long route to success, touring deepest Asia and ringing in the new year with Jim Carrey.
La Groove Maestro Makes "Electro Jazz Fusion" Respectable. No, Honestly!
They may be Belgian, but there’s precious little waffle as Deus frontman Tom Barman discusses the hard times that inspired the band’s latest record, his relationship with Blur’s Damon Albarn and his parallel career as budding, if occasionally frustrated, filmmaker.
His comedy isn’t for the faint of heart. But if you’re willing to go the distance Doug Stanhope has plenty of shock and awe in store, including rape jokes and gags about ugly Irish people.
She’s the latest female pop star with a taste for the avant-garde. Don’t go calling her the new Lady Gaga though.
Sonic Youth guitarist Thurston Moore has returned with his third solo album, Demolished Thoughts, which is predominantly an acoustic affair, not a move we would have expected from the erstwhile king of noise-rock.
Vicar St., Dublin
Mediocre effort from new wave legends.
He first came to our attention as the other half of Alex Turner side-project The Last Shadow Puppets. But can Miles Kane cut it as a solo artist? At the start, even he had doubts. But hook-ups with Noel Gallagher and Gruff Rhys soon set him straight.
Album of the year contender from Faris Badwan and the boys
Album of the year contender from Faris Badwan and the boys.
In addition to his celebrated literary novels, John Banville has carved out a parallel career as a crime writer of some distinction, writing under the pen name Benjamin Black. He talks to Paul Nolan about the latest book in the Black series, the compelling A Death In Summer.
A member of the DFA family and close friend of LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy, Dubliner Shit Robot has had a remarkable 12 months, with a rapturously received debut album and a star spot in LCD’s end-of-an-era madison square garden show. He tries to put it all into words.
The Massachusetts native gives a spellbinding performance
A member of the DFA family and close friend of LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy, Dubliner Shit Robot has had a remarkable 12 months. with a rapturously received debut album and a star spot in LCD's end-of-an-era Madison Square Garden show. He tried to put it all into words.
Ahead of their lone Irish festival appearance of the summer Editors’ Tom Smith talks about their adventures in China, their love of a good party and their relationship with the love it/hate it Twilight franchise
As they release their second album All At Once, The Airborne Toxic Event’s Mikel Jollett talks about the tragedies that have inspired his songwriting, getting politically active, and the band’s very famous fans...
Who needs indie rock when there’s a whole world of fab pop music out there to be influenced by? That’s what St. Albans techno trio Friendly Fires reckon at least. Singer Ed Gibson explains why they’d much rather be up all night listening to New Kids On The Block and Britney than Oasis or Kaiser Chiefs.
Erol Alkan performs a blitzkrieg of house, techno and electro.
The band kick off the first of three shows with their eponymous album
The Californian stoner rockers bring the house down
As he gets set to DJ at this year’s Temple House Festival, former Smiths man Mike Joyce talks about partying with the band, why a reunion probably won’t happen, and how he loves visiting his family home of Galway.
Awesome effort from LA hip hop wunderkind.
As they prepare to release sophomore album Gloss Drop, NYC math rock combo Battles talk festivals, Gary Numan and how they came to appear on the Twilight: Eclipse soundtrack.
Quality dance from German groove mechanics
Legendary indie rockers Yo La Tengo discuss their foray into live comedy, appearing on The Simpsons and their recent run-in with Spongebob Squarepants.
It’s not every up-and-coming artist who can boast of having a bona fide alt. rock legend play on their album, but that’s definitely the case for Limerick’s Mark O’Connor, who secured the guitar playing services of Dinosaur Jr’s J. Mascis...
Spirit of the US underground alive and well in Limerick
Super-producer pays tribute to Spaghetti Western soundtracks in style
Solo album from Pearl Jam frontman, performed entirely on ukulele. No, seriously!
Ex lawyer Keith Farnan on Tesco’s pole dancing kits for kids and how to talk about money and the IMF without depressing the hell out of yourself.
He may be a poker novice but that didn’t stop Clareman Niall Smyth winning a whopping €550k in the Irish Open.
Another masterful offering from English art-pop outfit
Quality psych-pop from animal collective member
A sitek for sore eyes
Solid debut offering from last shadow puppets man
Faris Badwan's day off
From Dexys Midnight Runners to the Smiths, many of Britain’s most iconic bands were comprised of second generation Irish musicians. Now a Cambridge academic has written a book tracing the influence of Irish culture on British rock and roll.
Best known for giving the world ‘Horse Outside’, Republic of Telly is surely the funniest example of RTÉ biting itself in the arse since... well, it’s been a while. Presenter Dermot Whelan – or possibly a cunning lookalike – talks about The Rubberbandits, gay rugby players and Neil Prendeville’s willy.
His first album answered the question: can Antony Hegarty do disco? Now Andy Butler is back with the second LP from his Hercules And Love Affair project. He talks about the record’s genesis and explains why Sinéad O’Connor is one of his greatest inspirations.
Long tagged as the nice guy of Irish observational comedy, Jarlath Regan is starting to show his teeth.
Angry, irreverent and iconoclastic, David McSavage is a singular presence in Irish comedy. Lately, his career has taken its strangest twist yet, via hit RTÉ show The Savage Eye. At a time when sketch comedy is too often content to scrape the catch-phrase barrel, the Dubliner takes a cleaver to national stereotypes. In his frankest interview yet he discussses his alcoholism, being the blacksheep of a political dynasty and his unlikely rebirth as a TV sensation.
Renowned for such establishment-baiting TV shows as The Mark Thomas Comedy Product, Mark Thomas’ latest project found him travelling to the Middle East to walk along the Israeli Wall, which separates the state from the West Bank. Thomas has detailed his experiences on the trip in a book and in a live show, Walking The Wall, which visits Dublin in March.
Disappointing Outing For Indie Icons
Underwhelming outing for us indie star.
Solid if unspectacular return from Guy Garvey and co
With their seventh album on the way postrockers Mogwai talk about their famous feud with Blur, their relationship with Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky and why it’s sometimes okay to be repetitive.
Comedian Stephen K. Amos talks about coming to terms with being gay, racial tensions in London and how his teenage years inspired his new show
Eight Albums In And PJ Keeps Getting Better
Impressive Return For Nu-Disco King Andy Butler
Californian Indie Mechants "Go Stadium". Be Afraid.
Yeasayer embrace the possibilites of music with infectious enthusiasm and produce a life-affirming noise
Disappointing Final Outing For One-Time King of Garage
Disappointing swansong from the King of Pop
Fresh from a triumphant Electric Picnic performance,’90s dance legends LEFTFIELD are getting straight back into action with a short run of Irish dates. Mainman Neil Barnes talks about the joys of blowing the ears off punters with his vintage beats.
LCD produce a brilliant show and quite possibly the gig of the year
Check out our pics from last night' epic O2 show
Third mediocre outing in twelve months for Swedish starlet
French duo's first soundtrack proves underwhelming
Underwhelming third outing for UK electro-acoustic merchant
Drummer makes decent solo album shock!
A treasure trove of psych-pop beats
Cerebral avant-electro. Top ten likely to remain untroubled.
Mediocre comeback from new-wave legends
Solid if unspectacular outing for celebrated dance duo
The’re the surgically precise avant-pop crew who count Radiohead and Arcade Fire as cheerleaders. So why are CLINIC still mired in obscurity? And can a popilicious new album remedy this disgraceful state of affairs?
As Jeff Wayne’s War Of The Worlds returns to the Dublin stage, the show’s creator explains how he cajoled Phil Lynott into appearing on the original record and how the death of Richard Burton derailed earlier plans for a live version.
For his latest project, comedian Dom Joly has written a travelogue about some of the world’s strangest countries – and, yes, North Korea was the weirdest of the lot
The band perform with spirit and passion, but they unashamedly borrow from the most boring aspects of U2, Kings Of Leon and Coldplay.
Based on tonight, expect to hear plenty more about The Black Keys in the near future.
The world’s most famous six foot transgender crooner, Antony Hegarty has returned with an astonishing new record, Swanlights. He talks about working with Bjork, his dalliances in nu-disco and his belief that mankind is basically doomed due to our destruction of the environment.
Taking time out from his Twilight Singers project, ex-Afghan Whigs leader Greg Dulli talks about putting Nirvana up for the night, his friendship with scary crooner Mark Lanegan and his first ever solo tour
Having come of age as a comedian in the grim 70s and the even grimmer 80s, BRENDAN GRACE knows all about raising an audience’s spirits at a difficult time. Looking forward to his return to Ireland from self-imposed exile in Florida, he discusses his famous cameo in Father Ted and his sudden popularity among younger comedy fans
Crystal Castles at The Academy, Dublin
Australian funnyman Jim Jeffries on trying to crack Hollywood and why, despite claims to the contrary, he really isn't trying to offend the moral majority
Keyboard plinking, mild-mannered stand-up DAVID O’DOHERTY on being published in America, hanging with Bob Dylan (kind of) and a foray into UK television
Vintage baroque-pop courtesy of cult Scottish outfit
Impressive fourth outing for chamber-pop crooner
With a solo album and memoir on the way, Carl Barât talks about the breaking-up of Dirty Pretty Things, putting The Libertines back together and hanging out in Dublin with the Divine Comedy’s Neil Hannon
So the visuals are great, how about the music? Hmmm...
Best known as one third of the Apres Match ensemble, Gary Cooke is branching into straight-up acting – well sort of – in the latest Ross O’Carroll Kelly play, which finds the south Dublin twat coming to terms with the recession. Taking a break from rehearsals, Cooke explains why Ireland is on the way to becoming the new Bulgaria
Underwhelming debut from synth-pop duo
Veteran rockers' "last attempt at mass communication" may fall just short of its ambition
The Olympia, Dublin
US ART-ROCKERS STILL GOING STRONG NINE ALBUMS IN
Performing against a backdrop of psychedelic visuals, much of the performance sees the band getting their avant-pop groove on. You can hear touches of Bowie, Barrett and sundry ’60s art-rock oddballs throughout the show
CRACKING DEBUT FROM DUBLIN DANCE PRODUCER
SOLID IF UNSPECTACULAR OUTING FOR COUNTRY STAR
This expansive, wall-of-sound style is an art in which Deerhunter leader Bradford Cox excels
Filled with wonderful bars, restaurants, galleries, museums, record shops and bookstores, and set against the stunning back-drop of the Esja mountain range and Atlantic ocean, Rekjavik is an unforgettable experience. Elsewhere in the country, Iceland offers the kind of scenery and natural beauty few countries can match.
Canada’s Charlie Ross initially found fame with his brilliantly funny one-man performance of Star Wars. For his latest solo show, he has opted to tackle that other much-loved movie trilogy, The Lord Of The Rings.
ahead of his appearance at electric picnic radiohead drummer Phil Selway tells us about his fantastic solo album.
Looking forward to their long-awaited Electric Picnic headline appearance, Leftfield’s Neil Barnes talks about putting the legendary dance ACT back together.
The much-esteemed Phill Jupitus discusses improv, stand-up, and a variety of characters as diverse as Slash and Stephen Fry
DANCE DUO DELIVER INSPIRED MASH-UP OF MIXTAPE TUNES AND LA ROUX'S VOCALS
NIN MASTERMIND, ER, REINVENTS HIMSELF WITH COLLECTION OF PITCH BLACK INDUSTRIAL TUNES
Hugely impressive collaboration between Brian Burton and the sorely missed Mark Linkous
He's the bad boy of gross-out comedy. Now Rob Schneider is going back to his stand-up roots. He talks about pre-show nerves, hanging backstage with Chris Rock and the profusion of political "crackpots" in the US...
QUALITY DREAM POP FROM US INDIE MAVERICK
MEDIOCRE OFFERING FROM SWEDISH POP STAR
UNDERWHELMING COMEBACK FOR R'N'B STAR
"Look at that," he beams. "It’s a sea of craziness."
They are regarded by many as the seamy underside of gambling in this country. And yet the casino industry is booming. Paul Nolan pulled up a stool at the blackjack table for this special report
RENOWNED TECHNO DUO GET THEIR GROOVE ON
QUALITY PSYCH-POP FROM LA UNDERGROUND GENIUS
A LOOK BACK ON HOLMER’S ODYSSEY
As well as short and sharp quirk-pop nuggets, Pavement are also capable of rustling up a rousing epic
Absolute mastery of numerous genres, allied to a flair for wordplay and witty satirical observation
Farting cats, Radiohead and his work on Flight Of The Conchords are all on the agenda as Paul Nolan meets Kilkenny-bound comedy superstar Arj Barker
Mancunian comedian JUSTIN MOORHOUSE fills us in on the exotic art of eating a boiled egg on the beach and negotiating the red carpet at Cannes with Eric Cantona.
They do make em' like this anymore
Stunningly eclectic offering from LA laptop guru
Preparing to DJ on the same bill as Paul Weller at the forthcoming Sea Sessions, David Holmes chews the fat with Paul Nolan.
Impressive second outing for Canadian electro fiends
Bloc Party's Kele Okereke is going solo. He talks about his forthcoming debut album and burgeoning interest in cutting-edge electronica. But he’s rather less forthcoming about his recent exiting of the closet.
Classy baroque pop from Canadian indie all-stars
Mark E. Smith successfully negotiates that difficult 28th album
A well-known journalist with the BBC, John Simpson has penned a provocative rumination on the way news was reported in the 20th century. He recalls his dangerous exploits in the Middle East and defends his contention that British broadsheets are the best in the world
Sublime third outing for NYC dance-punks
Up and coming country rockers The Avett brothers talk about working with Rick Rubin and the buzz around their new album.
Music mixologist supreme Danger Mouse talks about his latest project, a hook-up with James Mercer of The Shins.
You know him as the humungously bearded guitarist from TV On The Radio, but his new Rain Machine project sees Kyp Malone trying something completely different. And no, David Bowie isn’t involved!
Folk songbird Laura Marling became quasi-famous when an ex-boyfriend wrote an album about their messy break-up. Now that she is returning with a record of her own, she assesses the fall-out from her brief flirtation with notoriety and explains why she hates being called a singer-songwriter.
With this stellar gig, Lennox has once again demonstrated that he really is smarter than the average bear
The rivalry between two Scottish football teams is the basis of an intriguing new play, Singin’ I’m No A Billy, He’s A Tim [apparently the title makes sense if you’re from Scotland]. Its author Des Dillon explains why he was prompted to write the drama, which uses soccer to explore the thorny issue of sectarianism in the UK.
Tom Findlay Of UK dance wizards Groove Armada on their darkest album yet, working with Bryan Ferry and hanging out with Pop Idol star Will Young.
He's known as the king of trance. Now TIESTO is making a foray into old-fashioned pop music. He explains why he's embarked on a change of scenery, and gushingly explains why U2 are one of his favourite bands (even if he hasn't heard all their albums).
Son of legendary filmmaker John, CHARLEY BOORMAN is famous for embarking on gruelling round-the-world treks, usually in the company of his pal, the actor Ewan McGregor. Ahead of his forthcoming Vicar St. engagement, the wild rover waxes anecdotal.
Embracing the possibilites of music with infectious enthusiasm and producing a life-affirming noise.
She is the brightest pop star of the moment. But Marina Diamandis – who records as Marina and the Diamonds – doesn’t want to be a blink-and-she’s-gone starlet. As her debut album is released she tells Paul Nolan why she’s in it for the long haul, why celebrity culture has spun out of control and why she’s putting romance on hold to build her career.
Swedish Electro Maestros go Avant Garde
Northern Irish DJ Fergie had an eventful noughties, winning support from such luminaries as Carl Cox, James Lavelle, Dubfire, Miss Kittin and Laurent Garnier, and also hosting his own BBC Radio 1 show for six years. What have been the highlights for him over the past ten years?
Electro duo get a bit darker on latest offering.
After a six-year sabbatical, Eddie Izzard is back on the stand-up circuit. He discusses his left-wing political activism, acting with Tom Cruise and his admiration of Bono and explains why playing arenas is a bit like driving 'a really big car'
From international superstar DJ and soundtrack co-ordinator to curator of Belfast’s cultural past and – who’d have guessed it? – sensitive songwriter, David Holmes has flitted between multiple identities this decade. He leads us on a trip down memory lane.
Mediocre second album from no-frills Brighton rockers.
Impressive third album from the animated quartet.
Hip-hop improv man Rob Broderick is feeling jolly chuffed with himself after winning the prestigious Hackney Empire New Comedy Act Award.
Averegeness abounds from budding UK starlet
A record that's a camel of truth in a desert of lies
EMO BAND IN DECENT RECORD SHOCKER!
A gag isn't out of the question
Father Ted co-creator Arthur Mathews and his writing partner Paul Woodfull have just penned a new political sitcom for RTÉ, Val Falvey TD. The show features Ted star Ardal O’Hanlon in the titular role, and the series tracks the hapless public representative and his adviser as they attempt to navigate the choppy waters of Irish politics.
Funnyman SEAN HUGHES on why he thinks Ireland is backwards, comedians are boring and it’s okay to crack-wise about Stephen Gately
The legend started here
Quality Electro from Canadian Groove mechanic
He’s the reigning champion of gently ironic comedy. Now David O’Doherty has written a nature book, full of fascinating “facts”. Did you know, for example, that panda fur can be used to make bullet-proof vests?
He’s best known for reuniting – okay, attempting to reunite – the stars of ancient television programmes while the cameras roll. But behind the zany persona Justin Lee CoLlins has an interesting story of his own to tell, as he recounts in a fascinating memoir.
It’s the second night of The Pixies’ three-gig run in the Olympia, and like the other two shows, this date is completely sold out. It’s not hard to fathom the level of interest, as the pitch is pretty irresistible – the legendary quartet performing Doolittle, one of the greatest ever alternative albums, in its entirety.
English singer Pixie Lott looks like being the latest pop sensation on the block. The stage-school trained 18-year-old already enjoyed a number one single earlier this year with ‘Mama Do’, and this month sees the release of her debut album Turn It Up.
They’ve performed in front of Will Ferrell and created a huge stir with their RTE debut. Just back from Edinburgh, Dead Cat Bounce are now setting their sights on the live arena.
…In October, actually. The reunited band’s guitarist and songwriter, Gary Kemp, talks about their rivalry with Duran Duran, inspiring Quentin Tarantino and the group’s long association with Ireland.
To audiences on this side of the Atlantic, Janeane Garofalo is most familiar as an actress, thanks to her roles in US comedy and drama series such as The Larry Sanders Show, Seinfeld, The West Wing and 24. However, she is first and foremost a stand-up performer, and it’s in this capacity that she will visit Dublin to perform at the Bulmers Comedy Festival.
Having been widely mooted as one of Ireland’s most promising young artists, Laura Izibor delivered the goods earlier this year with her debut album, Let The Truth Be Told, a sparkling collection of R&B and hip-hop tunes. Critically well-received, it also performed well commercially, hitting the number two spot here, and – perhaps even more impressively – charting in the US top 30.
After a triumphant brace of performances at last year’s Bulmer’s Comedy Festival, US musical comic Stephen Lynch brings his trusty acoustic guitar back to the event once again this year. He talks about his love of old gangster flicks, his work with Comedy Central and writing controversial songs about kittens.
He used to be the ultimate indie no-hoper. But now JACK PEÑATE has discovered Krautrock, nu-rave and world music and released one of the year’s most engaging, and surprisingly accomplished, records. He talks about cultivating his eclectic side and discovering an outsider sensibility he describes as ‘joyous melancholy’.
You mightn’t be too familiar with their output, but Dublin metal outfit PRIMORDIAL are one of the quiet success stories of Irish music.
She’s shaping up to be one of the break-out stars of 2009, with a number one album and a Mercury Prize nomination to her name. We catch up with Florence And The Machine’s Florence Welch, who talks about becoming an overnight sensation, reflects on her bizarre childhood and explains why her most controversial song really isn’t as contentious as it’s made out to be.
Rising Irish star ANTONIA CAMPBELL HUGHES talks about her starring role as a sulky teenager alongside Jack Dee in the BBC’s Lead Balloon, her ringside view of the Pete Doherty circus and being ogled by Bryan Adams
The enigmatic pied-piper of psychedelic rock Donovan is to be honoured with a festival and a new documentary. Long based in Ireland, he talks about working with David Lynch and his plans to bring a new movie project on the road.
Underground heroes for the best part of a decade, French soft-rockers Phoenix look set to break-big with their latest album. They talk about drawing inspiration from the annals, and hanging out with Francis Ford Coppola
Patchy covers album from alt.rock veterans
African reggae god Tiken Jah Fakoly continues to be a thorn in the side of corrupt West African governments
Grunge is back, apparently. And the hotbed for the revival is the English city of Leeds, where Dinosaur Pile-Up are among the newcomer acts leading the charge.
He's the David Beckham of world rugby – but what does All Black star Dan Carter think of Ireland's historic Grand Slam and Leinster's dramatic Heineken Cup victory?
Get your dancing shoes on. Electro newcomers Magistrates are here to rock your blocks off. They talk about hanging out with Damon Albarn, worshipping Michael Jackson and living up to the legacy of heroes like Bowie and Talking Heads
There’s even a bona fide Spinal Tap moment, when the lead guitarist gets caught up in the mic stand and the bassist has to untangle him
The band reel through the short and sharp psychic shocks of Journal, which sounds as good live as it does on record.
Quality electro from Canadian groove mechanics
Julie Feeney, Ron Wood and Kazakhstan’s answer to Will Young are just some of the artists who’ve availed of Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott’s Dublin studio. He talks about life as a budding recording mogul
Apart from saving time, money and sanity when touring America, one o the best things you can do is try and get some American radio play. Here are some of the best online stations and guides to doing that.
Essentially, the record finds Phoenix doing what they do supremely well – danceable indie-pop with touches of shoegaze guitar and ambient electro.
Backstage craziness with Bell X1. Gratuitous (prescription) drug-taking. Cucumbers down the pants (sort of). It’s all in a day’s work for über-buzzy indie rock newcomers Villagers.
If you haven’t yet heard of gifted maverick ARIEL PINK, don’t worry – you soon will.
TWISTED WHEEL’s stunningly straightforward neo-punk manifesto has won them a horde of enthusiastic fans.
Twelfth album from electro veterans finds them back on top form
When Iain Archer decided to get away from it all for the making of his latest album, he didn’t settle for half measures. He packed up his guitars and vanished for several months into the depths of Germany’s Black Forest. But can the resulting record transform the career of a singer still best known for helping write Snow Patrol’s ‘Run’?
Roll out the Union Jack and strike up the first verse of Rule Britannia. Al Murray is bringing his pub landlord character back to Dublin. Looking forward to the gig, Murray talks about stripping to his boxers in front of Dita Von Teese and hanging out with Phil Collins and Alex James (while remaining fully clothed).
Welcome to the (haunted) house of fun
He was one of the first Irish comedians to make an international breakthrough in the ’90s. And now Ed Byrne is going from strength to strength with an entirely new show. He talks about the role class plays in his work and talks about the time he was accused of misogyny.
Former Snow Patrol man knows what the folk he’s doing
Ragamuffin rockers The View talk about second album syndrome, the upside of selling out and feeling the love from Lily Allen and Oasis.
NYC art-rockers go in for some ch-ch-changes on excellent third album
She made her name as one of Ireland’s leading stand-ups. Now Deirdre O'Kane is channelling her comic skills into a bittersweet study of a dissolving relationship.
The band churn out the dreariest material from both Sam’s Town and Day & Age, and – although I’m definitely in the minority – I find myself feeling a bit bored.
LA producers bond over Sao Paolo funk.
You might not think diabetes would be a rich source of comedy material. But Karl Spain found his medical condition to be a veritable goldmine.
She's swapped her Cardigans for a blanket of mid-life melancholia. From her new home in Harlem, Swedish indie-babe Nina Persson talks about her downbeat new album as A Camp, hooking up with a former Smashing Pumpkin and why life in a band can be like a prison sentence.
His admirers have included Kurt Cobain, Beck and Jack White. But Billy Childish is far from your average cult musician. He’s dabbled in conceptual art, is equally influenced by The Kinks and Joe Strummer and doesn’t listen to music – especially if it has anything to do with Leonard Cohen.
Scottish outfit impress with stripped-back acoustic album
Scenesters have been hip to widescreen New Jersey-ites THE GASLIGHT ANTHEM for several years. Now the rest of the world is starting to pay attention, too.
An Irish artist destined to make a big breakthrough this year is Dublin singer IMELDA MAY, whose debut album, Love Tattoo, mixes rockabilly and pop influences to superb effect.
It’s been a phenomenal year for Kings Of Leon – but opening the O2 in Dublin provided them with the best night of their tour…
Paul Nolan gets a taste of what the Dublin O2 will have to offer, as he visits its London counterpart for a truly stunning Leonard Cohen gig.
Crowd-pleasing performance exposes musical weaknesses
Oxford dance-punk outfit set the Ambassador on fire
Nordic indie sensation LYKKE LI on charming Conan O'Brien, living it up Amy Winehouse-style (well, sort of) and why it's important to keep the odd thing secret from the media...
Wayward alt. country sensation Ryan Adams talks about his battles with depression and the new lease of life he's enjoyed since hooking up with The Cardinals.
In an era of mad-cap stand-ups Jason Byrne is the maddest of them all. With a new DVD on the way, he talks about pushing the comedy envelope.
This band's eclectic nature shines in this compelling, soul-infused performance from frontman Tunde Adebimpe.
A few decent songs can't outshine this record's over-produced stadium rock. The Las Vegas rockers' latest just doesn't have the same sparkle.
The famously egotistical Kanye West talks about storming the MTV awards and his synth-happy new album, 808s and Heartbreak.
Reggae superstars Sly an Robbie were among the international music acts who gathered in Barcelona for the recent Red Bull Music Academy.
Now taking the solo route, Hugh Cornwell talks about his latest album, reminsces about kicking back with David Bowie, squaring off back-stage with U2 and cooling his heels in Pentonville.
Coverage of the last day of events for the Music Show, bringing together all elements of the music industry for the general public.
They're one of the biggest names in indie-dom but, with album number three about to be unleashed, Kaiser Chiefs can still go out on the town without being pestered by paparazzi.
Having survived a flirtation with coke-addled infamy, nice-boy Britrockers Keane natter about the long road to recovery and how it feels to be Bret Easton Ellis' favourite band.
Ahead of his public interview in Dublin with Hot Press, Wire creator David Simon talks about the genesis of the series and about his controversial new Iraq-set show.
They're a melodic folk-pop band in whose mouths butter wouldn't melt, but beneath the happy-clapy exterior Noah And The Whale have a dark side.
Kings Of Leon have had number one albums, rave critical notices and boast a remarkable array of A-list fans (U2, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones).
After years of slogging in the undergrowth of comedy, whimsy-merchant David O'Doherty has suddenly become an 'overnight' success having won a top prize at Edinburgh.
For three days, an otherwise quiet corner of the midlands was transformed into a carnival of the absurd, the extreme and the blistering loud.
Metallica certainly have a lot to prove with Death Magnetic, the follow-up to 2003’s St. Anger, an album which divided the critics and the band’s own audience.
This year's Olympics were one of the most fascinating ever. We sought the opinions of leading musicians and sports commentators on a memorable two weeks' action.
Metallica are back with an album that recaptures their brain-frying '80s pomp. Frontman James Hetfield talks about the dark side of hedonism and his love of Thin Lizzy.
There's more to Baltimore than The Wire. For instance, prolific electro experimentalist Dan Deacon, a former member of the Wham City arts collective.
He's the comedy songwriter who is deadly serious about his work. Meet Stephen Lynch, the man determined to prove that stand-up and indie rock really can get along.
The Lovebox festival returns to Dublin with a stellar line-up including Maximo Park, N*E*R*D, Paolo Nutini and Gorillaz Soundsystem. We talk to organisers Groove Armada.
He's barely recovered from Velvet Revolver but Duff McKagan is back with his Loaded side-project. He talks about Scott Weiland's departure from VR and his plane ride with a doomed Kurt Cobain
From his role as Officer Larvell Jones in Police Academy to voicing Gremlins and imitating Zeppelin and Hendrix, Michael Winslow has been making funny noises with his mouth for decades.
Debut album from acclaimed English duo gets the remix treatment, with impressive results, if only all remix albums were as good.
Legendary Irish comic Brendan Grace returns from his American exile to perform his annual Irish tour.
Muse's live sound engineer Marc Carolan on hair-raising experiences on the Russia-Ukraine border, Mexican earthquakes, Paris Hilton and playing Madison Square Garden and Wembley Stadium.
Cult actor Crispin Glover talks about his taboo-busting directorial debut What Is It?, playing George McFly in Back To The Future and meeting Andy Warhol at Madonna and Sean Penn’s wedding.
Al Jourgensen’s mob have rolled into town for their final ever gigs, and the occasion is a suitably black celebration of their pioneering career.
Astronomical record sales, sell-out tours and critical plaudits have not dimmed Coldplay's reputation as the worried men of pop. Bassist Guy Berryman gives us the lowdown.
A definite sense of fun permeates Conor Oberst, with the singer allowing himself to indulge a few whimsical idea's.
Naked Camera star PJ Gallagher tells all on the joys of festival sobriety, random acts of heckledom and his reputation as a right prankster.
Donkey is the mediocre second outing Brazilian electro rockers CSS – will it show that they have more substance beyond being a mere good-time party band?
Kings Of Leon's Nathan Followill shoots the breeze about going on the road with Pearl Jam, mid-tour brawls and his burgeoning Radiohead addiction.
Oxegen-bound White Denim look set to give Jack 'n' Meg a run in the mutant blues stakes.
Despite boasting another stellar line-up of guest vocalists, James Lavelle’s dance-rock project once again fails to convince
Production superstars The Neptunes get back to penning their own tunes – with highly impressive results
Rivers Cuomo and co. deliver another scintillating collection of punk-pop – with added experimentation
Albert Hammond Jr isn't just a pretty face. As well as his solo career and dayjob with The Strokes, he's also co-written a screenplay adaptation of Charles Bukowski's Pulp
In a world exclusive interview, Morrissey sets the record straight on sex, religion, politics, David Bowie and his Irish heritage, and casts a Trinny & Susannah-esque eye over Brian Cowen
Australian singer SIA's song `Breathe Me', was destined to become a great lost classic, until the folks at Six Feet Under gave it a new lease of life. Next stop, duets with Beck.
As the CEO of YouTube, Chad Hurley has been lauded and criticised for the video-sharing site's content in almost equal measure. Paul Nolan speaks with one of the world's richest men.
Delighted to have been dropped by Warners, The Futureheads haven't stood still for a moment.
Hercules and Love Affair mainman Andrew Butler talks about being signed to mega-label DFA and his formative experiences DJing in a leather bar.
As a key member of Public Enemy production team The Bomb Squad, Hank Shocklee helped lay the groundwork for modern hip-hop.
Mick Pyro and co. showcase some new stylistic influences on impressive third album
Electro-pop duo Oppenheimer have a very strong melodic sensibility, which means that, for all the sonic experimentation, the songs remain very accessible.
Confrontational Aussie comic Brendon Burns came to the attention of a wider audience last year after receiving the if.comedy award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
After a hiatus and reshuffle, Tindersticks have returned to former glories with their album The Hungry Saw. Singer Stuart Staples talks about the band's rejuvenation.
Panic At The Disco frontman Brendon Urie talks about channelling The Beatles, recording at Abbey Road and the influence on their music of Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk.
Europe now offers a bigger, better, wilder range of festivals than ever before.
On top of scoring a Top 5 hit with Elbow's latest album, singer Guy Garvey recently absconded to Nashville to record with Richard Hawley and Frank Black.
This was a towering performance from the charismatic singer, with awesome musical backing from The Bad Seeds.
Bland pop, dull mainstream rock and generic indie-schmindie are poison. But as the title of their album suggests, Foals have got the rhythmical remedy.
Mick Pyro and co. showcase some new stylistic influences on impressive third album
Before we get to tonight’s main event, a special mention has to go the support act, Har Mar Superstar, who performs a brilliantly entertaining set of cracking electro-funk rhythms.
Paul Nolan reviews THE BREEDERS live set in Vicar St., Dublin
Hotly tipped Canadian electro duo Crystal Castles deliver the goods on their debut album.
English indie rockers The Long Blondes are back, with a new electro sound and an unabashed love for Ronnie Corbett.
She's best known as the Pixies' sugar-voiced bassist, but now KIM DEAL is back with her latest Breeders record.
Long awaited comeback from Bristol trip-hop outfit proves worth the wait
Jack White’s bit on the side return with an accomplished and musically diverse second album.
Accelerate is patchy at best, with only the blaring finale, ‘I’m Gonna DJ’, really catching the attention.
They make dense, deep, Bible-referencing rock. But that doesn't mean The Gutter Twins are the sort to wear their hearts on their sleeves, especially when it comes to chinwagging with the press.
Still in her second decade, Adele is about to go stratospherically huge.
American comic Rich Hall explains why he prefers the Irish to 'whiny' Brits and talks about working with Curb Your Enthusiasm star Larry David back in the day.
Hercules And Love Affair may be a party, it may be a disco, but it sure ain't no foolin' around.
Hotly tipped Britrockers Los Campesinos talk about the influence of the '90s riot grrrl scene on their music and explain why the prospect of arena rock success doesn't rev their motors.
"You get the feeling that, in the long run, Diamond Hoo Ha is destined to be remembered as one of the lesser works in their canon"
Brooklyn psych-pop outfit MGMT proved to be an unexpected delight before a jam-packed Academy
You know him as the straight-talking turkey and Eurovision contender. But, in the confines of his 'pad', Dustin also turns out to be quite the indie rock connoisseur.
"It’s a tribute to the former Pixies frontman’s finely honed songwriting talents that this hastily created record is such an accomplished affair."
Bad-ass rockers The Cult have reconvened following half a decade in the wilderness. Frontman Ian Astbury talks about standing-in for Jim Morrison, jamming with UNKLE and explains why it's good to return to his day-job.
Cult comedian Richard Herring talks about his Dublin bound stand-up show Oh Fuck, I’m 40, working on Little Britain and writing for On The Hour, the legendary news spoof which launched the careers of Chris Morris and Steve Coogan.
"After a short and sharp evening’s entertainment, These New Puritans have left us impressed, intrigued and – wisely, perhaps – hungry for more."
He's one of the most notorious stand-up comics on the circuit, once even sparking a brawl among outraged audience members. But Jim Jeffries says he's just trying to make people laugh.
30 Seconds To Mars' Jared Leto talks about the challenges of juggling a music and Hollywood career and sheds light on his run-in with the authorities in China.
Cajun Dance Party are Thom Yorke's new favourite band and proteges of Bernard Butler. Not bad for a bunch of teenagers just out of school.
They're unheralded heroes of Canadian rock, purveyors of slinky indie-pop and swooning torchsongs about gay football hooligans. Say hello to Stars, the other great band from Montreal.
"The record is a less sonically abrasive affair than the album Cave released last year with his side-project Grinderman, but it teems with as many musical and lyrical ideas as ever..."
"Vampire Weekend certainly have one of the best band names I’ve heard in ages, although their music unfortunately proves less exciting than one might have hoped."
Former Moloko singer Roisin Murphy talks to Paul Nolan about collaborating with an all-star team of songwriters, her unique image and clubbing in Sheffield and New York.
"The focal-points of the performance are the duo of Torquil Campbell and Amy Millan, who alternate vocal duties and have a strong onstage chemistry."
Ahead of a headline date at Vicar Street, David O’Doherty talks about hanging out with the Flight of The Conchords and about his new Channel 4 TV show.
A protegé of LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy, Dubliner Shit Robot is one of the hottest new forces in electronica.
"Power certainly has an incredibly beautiful and expressive voice, it’s just that covering big band classics isn’t necessarily putting it to its best use."
"...a powerful collection of passionate, anthemic rockers that will no doubt please their hardcore following whilst winning new converts to the cause."
Paul Nolan meets Neil Delamere, one of the stars of The Panel and pound for pound the most rib-tickling stand-up in Ireland.
In a highly revealing interview, Bloc Party frontman Kele Okereke talks about the inspiration behind one of the albums of the year, his current listening and the band's plans for the future.
Always guaranteed a rapturous reception on Irish shores, David Gray meets his people.
The auld fellas of Ireland are a dying breed, says award-winning writer Declan Lynch, who has written a new book in defence of our curmudgeonly senior citizen.
He’s best known as an experimental UK comedian. But Matt Berry is no slouch as a musician either. Now, he’s combining his love of comedy and music in a ‘rock opera’ about the birth of Christ.
Key players in the Smiths’ extraordinary saga, Johnny Marr and Stephen Street recall those heady days.
LCD Soundsystem delivered a storming show on the second of their two nights in Tripod.
As Stereophonics release their sixth abum, frontman Kelly Jones talks about his friendship with Oasis and reveals that he’s buried the hatchet with Muse.
The NYC rap outfit are in flying form and deliver a top-notch performance.
This was a triumphant performance and, frankly, a damn sight better than anything Madonna has done in a long time. All hail the mighty Stef.
Andrew Maxwell who has followed up a year of successful television appearances with a sell-out stand-up show and a nomination for a prestigious comedy award.
The border counties may not exactly be a hotbed of indie rock but that hasn’t stopped Monaghan hopefuls The Flaws from producing one of the year’s most mesmerising debuts.
It was the reunion they said would never happen, but now The Police are about to bring their sell-out comeback tour to Ireland.
There were too many moments on the night when the Mondays most closely resembled a dodgy Madchester tribute band.
New York comic Des Bishop’s new show chronicles his attempt to learn Irish in the Connemara Gaeltacht.
With a voice like his, and some remarkable songs to match, Declan O'Rourke's ascension to the international frontline is no surprise.
Necessary Evil is bereft of surprises and is pretty much as you would expect it to be.
To paraphrase Jarvis, you’ve got to wonder what exactly Hard-Fi are going to do for an encore – cos this is hardcore.
Possessed of a jovial demeanour, Dave Grohl is a hugely likeable performer and he effortlessly wins the crowd over with his good-humoured banter.
From the goodtime vibes of Hot Chip to the full-on sonic assault of Primal Scream, this year's Electric Picnic was even more fab than its predecessors.
Ahead of Electric Picnic, seminal band Sonic Youth chat to Hot Press.
Switches talk about standing out from the indie-pop crowd, and their recent adventures at the poker table in Ireland.
After a five-year hiatus, Jarvis Cocker has bounced back with a cracking solo record.
Indie-shy boys to their boots, seasiders Mumm-Ra have turned heads with their stylish and plaintive alt-pop.
Doing his best to brush aside a splitting headache Lenny Henry talks about the influence of Irish comics on his work.
He’s been busily wooing the US (squeezing in a Letterman appearance while he’s at it). Now, he's preparing to unleash a new show on Irish audiences.
Still scratching your head over The Sopranos’ enigmatic final curtain? To help you make sense of it – and to look back over its eight years – we talk to Frank Vincent, aka wiseguy Phil Leotardo...
The Mix-Up is billed as the Beastie Boys’ “first ever album of all-new instrumental material,” although the NYC trio have been playing around with wordless funk and jazz pieces throughout their career.
Fresh from his Glasto appearance with Lily Allen, Terry Hall talks about his friendship with Damon Albarn and the enduring influence of his band, The Specials.
Citing “irresolvable conflict”, grunge legend Chris Cornell has packed in his day job with Audioslave to pursue a solo career. Here, he explains why he’s decided to go it alone.
Timberlake shows impressive flair and versatility - he's as comfortable sitting on a stool crooning an acoustic ballad as he is larking around with scantily clad dancers.
Assailed by raindrops, Sunday’s line-up nonetheless managed to work their magic without resorting to naked mud-wrestling.
Probably a track or two short of being a stone-cold classic, Our Love To Admire nonetheless makes for hugely rewarding listening.
Dizzee Rascal’s third album is an inspired affair, building on the basic sonic template of his acclaimed first two albums and adding new layers of audio trickery. Make no mistake about it – this is one mean sounding record.
Razorlight have catapulted to superstar status with their No. 1 single 'America'. As they prepare to wow Oxegen this weekend, we talk to mainman Johnny Borrell about cricket, saving the planet and dating Kirsten Dunst.
Step aside Jamie Oliver. English comic John Shuttleworth is about to reveal to the world the secrets of good cooking.
If there’s a central problem with War Stories, it’s that at times it strays too close to rock orthodoxy and loses the offbeat stylistic flourishes that made Unkle such an exciting proposition to begin with.
For a band that started over three decades ago, Devo put remarkable energy and imagination into their live shows, with a performance that retains its unpredictability right to the finish.
The recent release of the compilation album So Real: Songs From Jeff Buckley was a potent reminder of the extraordinary impact Jeff Buckley made during his short life. In an exclusive interview, on the 10th anniversary of his death, his mother Mary Guibert reflects on the singer’s legacy.
30th Anniversary retrospective: From the murders of Tupac and Biggie to the bizarre implication of Marilyn Manson in the Columbine massacre; from Courtney, Axl and Spector’s falls from grace to the canonisation and demonisation of Peter Doherty... here’s a potted history of the most controversial events in the last 30 years of rock ‘n’ roll.
Currently promoting his debut solo album The Ideal Condition ahead of his appearance at Electric Picnic, Paul Hartnoll made his name alongside his brother Phil in Orbital, one of the most significant dance acts of the past 20 years.
30th Anniversary Retrospective: It was the funniest Irish comedy ever. A decade after Father Ted, two of the men behind the show - Declan Lowney and Arthur Mathews - reminisce about its impact.
Playing Live at the Marquee on Sunday June 24: Lock up your housewives. Ireland’s most eligible bachelors, Podge & Rodge, are on the road and looking for love.
Live at the Marquee on Friday June 29: They were the gaudiest of the ‘80s pop sensations. 20 years on, Duran Duran leader Simon Le Bon explains why the good time boys are a band for the long haul.
We Are The Night is unlikely to make much of an impression with the hipster contingent, but it’s still a wonderful album.
They’ve played with Bloc Party and Muse and shared a studio with Fionn Regan. Now, London garage rockers The Noisettes are set to make a splash of their own.
Having enjoyed a new lease of life on the back of his appearances on The Podge & Rodge Show, Freddie Starr talks to Paul Nolan about his trips to Ballydung Manor, the current state of British TV and why he most definitely did not eat that hamster.
From electro curios to feted songwriters, it’s been a long strange trip for Hot Chip. And they’re just warming up.
With their thumping rhythms and crunching guitar riffs, Bonde Do Role are actually reminiscent of the no-brainer party music of Andrew WK, albeit with an added lyrical emphasis on lewd sexual acts.
A rock star having sex with his 19-year-old girlfriend whilst drenched in blood – no, it’s not Sam Snort’s latest escapade, it’s the new collaboration between God of Fuck Marilyn Manson and Titanic director James Cameron.
They’ve spent the past four years pottering around the garden. Now, electro kingpins Groove Armada are back with a new album that features cameos from ex-Sugababe Mutya Buena among others.
Twenty five years after The Jam went their separate ways, bassist Bruce Foxton and drummer Rick Buckler are back playing together under the name From The Jam.
Bertie has been given a tongue-in-cheek online tribute.
With The Panel set to return for a series of election specials, show regular Mairead Farrell discusses the state of the body politic, doorstep meetings with Bertie Ahern and her encounter with Bill Clinton.
Lobby group Theatre Ireland recently invited the arts spokespeople of the main political parties to outline their policies ahead of the general election. The event took place at Andrew’s Lane Theatre before an audience of key figures from the arts sector.
Hotly-tipped art-rock outfit Headgear fuse bed-sit miserablism with a masterful pop instinct. But what’s former D’Unbelievable Pat Shortt doing on sax duty?
Despite Andy McCluskey’s svengali role in Atomic Kitten, OMD were a far more left-field proposition than most of their ‘80s synth duo contemporaries.
He's the godfather of English whimsy, the spiritual successor to Syd Barrett. So why the hell is Robyn Hitchcock sharing a pokey tour bus with three fifths of REM?
Beyond is the first album of new material by Dinosaur Jr since 1997, and the first to feature Mascis, Barlow and Murph in nearly two decades.
On the eve of the release of their highly anticipated debut album, Dublin quartet Delorentos take five from their latest video shoot to discuss playing with Gang of Four, hanging with Steve Albini and playing football in Texas.
Patrick Wolf’s baroque folk-pop has earned the singer comparisons with artists such as David Bowie and Kate Bush, while The Arcade Fire were sufficiently impressed to offer him a support slot on the first leg of their European tour.
Now on their third album, Kings Of Leon have rubbed shoulders with Bob Dylan, U2 and the Pixies, and can count Led Zep and the Rolling Stones among their fans.
In the countdown to the general election, Apres Match member Risteard Cooper is aiming to revive Irish political satire with his new series of spoof documentaries, The State Of Us.
Like The Smiths and The Jam in their heyday, Arctic Monkeys certainly don’t hang around when it comes to releasing new material.
Formed by brothers Niels and Torsten Kinsella in 2002, God Is An Astronaut are among Ireland’s premier practitioners of the post-rock genre.
He may have lost his record deal but Brian McFadden is optimistic about the future. And no, he doesn’t plan on getting back with Kerry.
Comprised of members of various local indie outfits (among them Future Kings Of Spain and Mexican Pets) A Lazarus Soul have delivered an intriguing second album.
LCD Soundsystem's frontman James Murphy talks about working with Justin Timberlake, his Cork ancestors and recalls the time he almost hooked up with Arcade Fire
From RTE’s The Panel to London’s Comedy Store Andrew Maxwell has the comic world at his feet.
She used to step out with Jeff Buckley. Now rock and roll is Joan As Policewoman’s first love.
He arrives onstage at Vicar Street dressed like John Travolta and Samuel L Jackson in Pulp Fiction, while throwing shapes with characteristic flamboyance and charisma.
Numerous elements conspired to make this gig a more intriguing event than might otherwise have been the case.
Made up of some of Ireland’s finest session musicians, who have played with artists ranging from Damien Rice and Paddy Casey to Sister Sledge and the Bee Gees, The Carnival Saloon offer a promising debut.
He’s spent years trying to live down his bubble-gum pop days but, two decades after the event, former hearthrob Jason Donovan is finally going back to his roots.
Those who are into The Rapture continue to love them, as evidenced by tonight’s sold-out crowd. The band remain, as ever, a thrilling live act.
Texas native Micah P Hinson has a decidedly more intriguing background than the average singer-songwriter.
Air have retained their trademark dream-pop sound, though they have added a few interesting new elements to the mix.
It has to be acknowledged that Razorlight, despite their limitations, have actually put on a very enjoyable show.
You know them as heartfelt songwriters. But when they’re not mucking about in the studio, Neil Hannon and Thomas Walsh enjoy nothing more than a game of cricket. And they’re not just in it for the cucumber sandwiches, either.
Virtuoso violinist Andrew Bird may be an avant-pop posterchild, but that hasn’t stopped him jamming with the cast of Sesame Street
The grey market in tickets is a growing problem. So why does the Government appear so reluctant to address the issue?
The singer is actually much more assured onstage than the last time I saw The Killers, at the Olympia in 2004, when his inhibitions seemed to be holding him back.
Delicately plucked acoustic guitar and lovelorn vocals; an all-round atmosphere of “cidery traditionalism”.
Difficult second album syndrome has no place in the Clap Your Hands Say Yeah vocabulary. Not that the blogger faves are exactly busting a gut to have a hit.
Their self-titled album was one of the very best records of 2005, and with the follow-up, Sound Of Silver, James Murphy has delivered another absolute cracker.
Neil Delamere on the joys of working on The Panel, meeting Jason Alexander from Seinfeld and his appearance on Holland’s answer to the David Letterman show.
The Fall’s 431st album – made by their 804th line-up – doesn’t feature any particularly radical stylistic departures by the post-punk legends.
Kaiser Chiefs’ teenage fanbase is unlikely to be disappointed by Yours Truly…, which is packed to the brim with the sort of singalong anthems that made their first album such a resounding commercial success.
Dave Grohl and Damon Albarn are among the growing number of fans of English singer-songwriter Scott Matthews.
It may well be their fate to end up on some future compilation entitled The Classic Sounds of January 2007, but, for tonight at least, The Automatic are indie rock’s (ahem) undisputed heavyweight champions.
Singer Lovefoxx is a magnetic performer; resplendent in figure-hugging lycra bodysuit
Kristin Hersh’s seventh solo album sees the singer mix the indie rock of her cult bands Throwing Muses and 50-Foot Wave with the sparse acoustica so familiar from her previous solo albums.
Some Loud Thunder covers an impressive stylistic breadth without ever losing the band’s identity.
Hot Press brings you an exclusive preview of The Arcade Fire’s hotly anticipated second album, Neon Bible. And yes, it really is worth the wait.
From Dr Strangelove to Eyes Wide Shut, film director Stanley Kubrick cast an enigmatic shadow over film. Since his death, the director’s widow, Christiane Kubrick, has dedicated herself to preserving his legacy. Here she offers a glimpse of the man behind the legend.
Lluther need to learn a few more tricks to really stand out from the crowd, but Agent Of Empire certainly makes for a promising beginning.
Whelan’s is completely jammed for English maverick Robyn Hitchcock’s performance, and you can scarcely move without spilling the pint of a musician, DJ, journo or music industry figure of some description.
Leanne Harte is the new rock queen of Bebo and she’s done it all herself, with just a little help from 47,357 friends.
As Duke Special set off for a jaunt around Europe with the Divine Comedy, our correspondent hitched a ride on the tour bus. In between the sound-checks and the motor-way pitstops, he received a unique insight into the life of the touring musician.
Beck's The Information veers between two distinct styles – the kind of blues/folk/hip-hop mash-ups that Beck has made his own, and a more melancholy, plaintive type of tune that he has increasingly favoured in recent years.
Disused Mexican banks, Little Britain, Pete Doherty and drunken Sky TV appearances are all on the agenda as Paul Nolan and his temperamental tape machine meet Carl and Didz from Dirty Pretty Things.
It’s hard to think of a more perfect setting for Jurassic 5’s good-time party vibes than twelve o’clock on a Saturday night in Vicar St. The venue is sold out and from the off, everybody is up and dancing for what proves to be a pulsating couple of hours’ entertainment.
Jay Z is, almost effortlessly, a star. After the opening few numbers, all he has to do is wander out to edge of the stage and stare out into the crowd for the whole place to go apeshit
There’s a sell-out crowd on hand for Pearl Jam’s eagerly anticipated Point date, their first in Dublin in six years, which is also the opening night of their European tour. The group’s ace card is unquestionably Eddie Vedder, whose charisma and stage presence are reminiscent of no one so much as Jim Morrison.
There is no better group to lift the spirits of the tired and weary than Daft Punk.
The first sell-out show of the week arrives in the form of The Raconteurs’ jam-packed Olympia gig, and Jack White and co. don't disappoint.
As if Beck’s brilliance wasn’t enough, Radiohead deliver an absolutely stunning set that puts the efforts of Coldplay, Keane, Muse and the million other pretenders to their throne into utterly unforgiving perspective.
Unfortunately, the material from Morrissey’s most recent solo albums, while still containing the clever lyricism that is his hallmark, is missing one vital element – Johnny Marr – and so is musically generic, undistinguished and at times just downright boring.
It goes without saying that at this stage SNOW PATROL are an incredibly polished live act, with the likes of ‘Spitting Games’ and ‘Chocolate’ electrifying the venue early on.
Departing to tumultuous cheers and standing ovations on the balconies, the message to the band from the audience is clear – we just can’t get enough.
Yes, the incessant downpour ensured that Punchestown Racecourse often looked more like the set of a World War 1 epic than a music festival, but the rain couldn't dampen the 80,000-strong Oxegen crowd's spirits, not to mention the fiery performances delivered by Arctic Monkeys, Franz, The Who, the Chili Peppers and a cast of, well, hundreds.
Mogwai carries the intense sounds from their album Mr. Beast from the recording studio to the stage.
I have to confess that I was not hugely excited by the prospect of going to this gig. Although never exactly averse to Beth Orton (I loved her Chemical Brothers collaboration, ‘Where Do I Begin’) I generally find it hard to enthuse about acoustic-wielding singer-songwriters, particularly in a live setting.
I once put it to Liam Howlett that if Harrison Ford had strayed into a nightclub for a boogie in Blade Runner, the resident live band would most probably have looked and sounded like The Prodigy.
As expected, it turns out to be a superb performance: an awesome collision of thumping bass-lines, crunching hip-hop beats, chaotic samples and funked-up wah-wah guitar, all underpinned by an incredibly powerful political message.
As it happens, there is a good deal more substance to Kele Okereke and co than the average flash-in-the-pan indie outfit, and throughout 2005 their standing has grown and grown, to the point that they are now able to perform with considerable confidence and poise before a sold-out Olympia audience.
A fitting tribute to the late John Peel, showcasing an impressive collection of diverse bands, all of whom featured on the legendary broadcaster’s show at some stage – a testament to the Radio 1 DJ’s tireless promotion of new music.
For such a legendarily shy character, Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo sure has a commanding presence.
Smoke is billowing out from behind the giant rippling black sheet covering the stage at the RDS. It’s safe to assume that a new pope has not been elected.
Hallelujah, brothers! Mercifully, the rain (which has intermittently fallen in bucket-loads throughout the day) has held off, and so the scene is perfectly set for peerless US noiseniks Sonic Youth to come along and do their alternately corrosive and blissfully melodic garage rock thang.
Their deconstructed noize-pop has personified rock's cutting edge for three decades. But could Sonic Youth finally be mellowing?
Around two years ago, Arab Strap’s Aidan Moffat told this reviewer that the finest gig he’d ever seen was by an American musician named Devendra Banhart
Arising from the ashes of aborted supergroup Zwan, onetime Smashing Pumpkin Billy Corgan returns with a hotly anticipated solo debut. Still brimming with that patented goth angst, he tells Paul Nolan about his collaboration with fellow doom-merchant Robert Smith, his friendship with the two Davids – Lynch and Bowie – and, oh yeah, why he's still sore about the Pumpkins.
Odelay! The undisputed master of rock/funk/hip-hop/blues has come to spellbind us with his magical sonic sound-dust. And – to quote well-known indie authority, John Motson – my word, he doesn’t half deliver the goods.
Far from the miserable pessimist of lore, eels frontman Mark Everett, aka E, is in fact an upbeat, sanguine character with an engagingly wry sense of humour. He here talks to Paul Nolan about The Eels’ extraordinary new double album, Blinking Lights And Other Revelations, being inspired by Stanley Kubrick, collaborating with Tom Waits, why his dog couldn’t make it out on tour, and slapping Steve Jones’ backside.
Back in the saddle with their eagerly anticipated second album Demon Days, subversive animated quartet Gorillaz here talk to Paul Nolan about striking out against celebrity culture, what went wrong with the Gorillaz movie, collaborating with Shaun Ryder, Roots Manuva and Dennis Hopper, and why they didn’t vote Labour. Oh, and Mexican brothels.
Although Trent Reznor has been tried and been found guilty for taste crimes in the international court of pop-cultural opinion (his semi-legendary and frighteningly authentic pseudo snuff-movie, the Peter Christopherson-directed Broken, remains banned on this side of the Atlantic) personally speaking, I have generally found the singer’s fascination with extreme horror imagery, S&M and general underground depravity to be the least startling aspect of his estimable oeuvre.
One of the funniest comedy sketches I ever saw concerned the timelessly naff quality of Queen’s sartorial sensibilities. It was on an Armstrong And Miller show about four years ago, and was set in the year 2040. A guide was taking a group of tourists around a stately home, which was putatively an exact replica of Freddie Mercury’s real life abode. The titular comedians were paid actors playing – for “educational purposes”, understand – Brian May and the late singer, with Ben Miller’s skin-tight leather costume being an especially funny tribute to Mercury’s near-heroically outrageous fashion sense.
Since the release of their sophomore album Antics late last year, New York goth-rock quartet Interpol have risen to the pantheon of great contemporary bands. In a rare in-depth interview, the group’s erudite frontman Paul Banks here discusses the making of Antics, their upcoming support slot with U2, the band’s peers in the NYC indie scene, The Strokes, Nirvana and David Lynch - and where one of the most acclaimed groups of recent years go to from here. Interview by Paul Nolan.
And will you know them by the trail of bands they influenced: Mogwai, Tortoise, Labradford, Godspeed – the list goes on and on. Among the Dublin indie cognoscenti, this was the must go-to gig for weeks in advance, as Dave Pajo (who has become the most high-profile member of the band since their 1992 split) and his cohorts played another show on their short reunion tour, hastily embarked upon following their recent reformation to play the All Tomorrow’s Parties Festival in Camber Sands.
Online Exclusive: hotpress.com presents the final ever interview with electro-industrial pioneers Coil
As ever with this maverick talent, Gemstones is predictable only in its sheer unpredictability. Whilst his musical style remains at least moderately categorizable (those ragged folk rhythms are still present and correct), lyrically, his approach is more laissez faire than the economic policies of Reagan and Thatcher combined.
From the profound and the insightful to the weird, funny and just plain daft, Paul Nolan rounds up what the famous and infamous had to say for themselves in 2004...
You can very much hear the band gradually piecing together the constituent elements that would make Bleach such a bewitching sonic brew; the gonzo experimentation and guitar pyrotechnics of the ‘80s US underground, married to Cobain’s Beatles-like melodic sensibilities and, of course, that searing, indelible voice.
The League Of Gentleman are currently shooting their debut feature film in County Wicklow – and we’ve got the inside story.
The decision by the DEAF organisers to take electronic music out of the clubs and into more unorthodox venues is increasingly looking like a masterstroke. It's difficult to conceive of a more suitable environment for Decal's moody electronica or Coil's foreboding ambient compositions than the baroque surroundings of City Hall.
t's difficult to conceive of a more suitable environment for Decal's moody electronica or Coil's foreboding ambient compositions than the baroque surroundings of City Hall
...if you don’t pay attention to Caught In The Net’s student friendly guide to humourous sites on the web.
A tired and emotional Ed Byrne talks to Hoot Press about partying in Edinburgh, undergoing strenuous discourse with Ricky Gervais and attempting to track down a Czech porn star.
The received music industry wisdom that Dublin crowds are a soft touch for touring artists got another boost here tonight, as funk/R’n’B queen Kelis came rolling into town in support of her Tasty album
A catchy slice of reggae-fied up-tempo rock.
Paul Nolan puts the questions to Des Bishop ahead of his trip to Stradbally
It goes without saying that Glen Matlock has already sealed his place in rock lore as the melodic conscience of The Sex Pistols.
Hip Hop guru, political activist and occasional visitor to Inishturk, Speech tells Paul Nolan why his group are still as relevant in the 21st century as they were during their mid ‘90s heyday.
A member of one of the most famous political families in the country, Conor Lenihan gave up a career in journalism to follow his late father brian into politics. Tipped for promotion in Bertie Ahern’s September reshuffle, the rising star talks to Hot Press about Charlie McCreevy, Charlie Haughey. His father’s political downfall and the future of Fianna Fail. [Photos: Liam Sweeney]
Private eye columnist Craig Brown on why there’s no danger of satire going out of business.
This is an impressively accomplished collection from Messrs Linnell and Flansburgh. Who knows, the geeks might yet inherit the earth.
From being the voice of the toilet duck (no, really) to having his own chat show (well, kind of), actor and comedian Rob Brydon (aka keith barret) has finally come of age.
Paul Nolan talks to Neil Hegarty, author of Waking Up In Dublin, a new book which offers an outsider’s view of the music scene – and more – in the capital
Even before I’ve opened the PR release, I know the reference points to expect: Dylan, Petty, The Byrds and The Band with a more than-is-strictly-necessary side order of Tonight’s The Night-era Neil Young.
By all known rationale, this gig should be a disaster, a car-crash, Burroughs-in-a-GAP-advert awful. And yet, incredibly, miraculously, it’s not. It is fucking brilliant, a revelation, the best gig I have seen in this horrendous cattle-mart by some distance.
Overall, Tyrannosaurus Hives is a fairly perfunctory attempt to merge a few different new-wave guitar styles, with ‘70s punk as the support scaffolding. But, like many of their contemporaries, The Hives don’t seem to have the willingness to progress and experiment that mark out the truly great bands.
Comic book artist and file clerk turned movie star, Harvey Pekar must be one of the most unlikely and somewhat reluctant celebrities of our time. An ordinary man whose work has produced extraordinary art, the anti-hero of American Splendour here talks about his friend Toby, Robert Crumb, James Joyce, David Letterman, fame and misfortune, surviving and more.
Paul Nolan is impressed with a new book which tells the inside story of America’s ground-breaking comedy phenomenon, Saturday Night Live
Paul Nolan is impressed with a new book which tells the inside story of america’s ground-breaking comedy phenomenon, Saturday Night Live
The first half-hour practically peels the paint off the walls; Conley and Prescott provide a relentless surge of thumping rhythmic pandemonium, whilst Miller coaxes wave after wave of skull-shattering distortion from his guitar.
Paul Nolan talks to highly praised new zealand comedy duo flight of the conchords ahead of their upcoming dublin show.
Every breath they took...
...Life after booze, depression and Blur. Paul Nolan meets a newly energised and optimistic Graham Coxon
Tim Booth is not a man who has ever been unduly troubled by contemporary notions of cool and un-cool. In the early nineties, when Nirvana were storming the barricades, Primal Scream had the nation under an acid-drenched groove and Kevin Shields was in the process of reinventing guitar music with Loveless, Booth and his cohorts in James were encouraging patrons at Student Union discos all around Britain to literally sit down to the strains of the anthemic stadium rawk number, er, ‘Sit Down’.
At the last count he’s earned the ire of Republicans, Democrats, equality lobbies and Ed Sullivan, whilst garnering admiring notices from Woody Allen, Steve Martin and Nelson Mandela. meet former rabbi and czar of un-pc comedy, Jackie Mason.
Ten years on from what many critics consider to be the band’s career apex – the era of down ‘n’ Dirty, Butch Vig-facilitated crossover appeal and Kurt-ordained, alt.rock godfathers-status – the Youth are certainly unlikely to re-attain cred-heavy money-spinner status with Sonic Nurse, but as the band put it on the incomparably brilliant ‘100%’, that’s got nothing to do with a good time.
From jon kenny to kilkenny to paul merton in cork, Paul Nolan selects some highlights from a madly busy weekend of comedy.
Master of improv and star of Have I Got News for You, Paul Merton talks about comedy without a safety net, why Angus Deayton had to go, and performing alongside a tub of lard.
He’s still capable of the odd moment of genius, and his place in the pantheon of rock greats is more or less sacrosanct, but Gettin’ In Over My Head singularly fails to reach the stratospheric standards Brian Wilson has previously set himself.
Ron Sexsmith has always had a unique take on the alt.country genre. Combining a flair for haunting Americana a la Johnny Cash (indeed Retriever is dedicated to the memories of June & Johnny, along with Elliot Smith), with an arch lyrical sensibility owing a debt to Jonathan Richman, Morrissey, and even, on this outing, Neil Hannon...
Cinematic weirditude! arbus-like photography! theoretical physics! as Paul Nolan discovers, it’s definitely not only rock’n’roll for Hope Of The States, the Chichester band with a certain Westmeath connection.
Cinematic weirditude! arbus-like photography! theoretical physics! as Paul Nolan discovers, it’s definitely not only rock’n’roll for Hope Of The States, the Chichester band with a certain Westmeath connection.
Ahead of the European Championships in Portugal, the England and Arsenal full back on another great year for the Gunners, discipline and indiscipline, football scandals, money and, of course, Roy Keane.
He may just be the best-kept secret in Irish comedy, a veteran export who has won critical acclaim in Britain and the respect of luminaries such as Frank Skinner, Bill Bailey and Simon Munnery. Paul Nolan talks to Ian MacPherson in advance of his homecoming.
As ever, the singer pays dutiful homage to his musical heroes, without ever taking the time to fully forge a distinctive personal identity.
Paul Nolan looks forward to the tenth anniversary of the Murphy’s Cat Laughs Festival
Matt Lucas and David Walliams on the joy and drag of Little Britain. words Paul Nolan.
Politician, law & criminology professor, activist, abortion information campaigner and labour party candidate in the forthcoming european elections… all this and Ivana Bacik once served a pint of vodka to Perry Farrell, shortly before he fell over on stage at Glastonbury.
The last scintilla of doubt just rode out of town – groundbreaking news spoof The Day Today is back on the agenda courtesy of a brand new DVD, and the show’s gleeful send-up of current affairs broadcasting is now more relevant than ever.
As is often the case when bands have a whole host of new material they're itching to try out, the crowd become slightly restless midway through the evening. The Meltdown material sounds great, but there's no getting around the fact that we've come to hear the old favourites, and the band know it.
An incorrigible curmudgeon he may be, but seinfeld co-creator Larry David has once again produced a bona fide comedy classic in curb your enthusiasm.
For a former mod who once failed to get a prince review published in Hot Press, Mark Little has done pretty well for himself. Paul Nolan quizzes the author and broadcaster about Iraq, Washington, the West Wing, Ireland’s place in the world, politics, the media, Michael O’Leary, Bono and, of course, the smoking ban.
In the five years since its debut, The Sopranos has grown from an underground show with a small cult following to one of the most successful TV series' of all time. Paul Nolan traces the show’s development from its inauspicious beginnings on HBO to its current status as a transatlantic cultural phenomenon, and also examines our enduring fascination with a man called Tony Soprano.
Righteous, raging and hysterically funny, the late Bill Hicks was the comedian too hot even for Letterman. Paul Nolan on a new book that fills out the legend.
Fresh from a support slot on Damien Rice’s recent UK tour, Bray songwriter Fionn Regan has now released this intriguing EP on the Brighton-based Anvil Recordings.
Alphastates’ ‘Sometimes’ is still a supremely elegant electro-acoustic number that convincingly explains their esteemed status in the Dublin independent scene.
Clearly subscribers to the “strike while the iron is hot” school of album promotion, no sooner has the Patrol’s breakthrough hit ‘Run’ exited the British top ten than the Northern rockers are rush-releasing the follow-up single.
To be frank, I sincerely doubt we’ll hear a better pop single than the rip-roaringly brilliant ‘Crazy In Love’ for the remainder of the decade..
Okay Placebo, pay attention – this is how you fashion a graceful, plaintive electro-ballad with a side order of singalong-friendly chorus.
Okay Placebo, pay attention – this is how you fashion a graceful, plaintive electro-ballad with a side order of singalong-friendly chorus.
As the old saying goes, all good things must come to an end, and this fortnight’s winning streak on the singles page is bought to a predictably crushing terminus by Placebo’s unwelcome return to the fold.
A characteristically gorgeous slice of dreamy electro-pop (though perhaps slightly more tense than the supremely languid, blissed-out epics of yore), ‘Surfing’ is one of the standout tracks of Air’s excellent third album..
Jack and Meg round off a phenomenally successful twelve months with this limited edition release from Elephant.
With a roster featuring such luminaries as The White Stripes, Electric Six, Dizzee Rascal and The Avalanches, the XL label is right now occupying a position in the British music industry roughly equivalent to that of Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Despite all appearances, Tamsin Grieg’s Black Books character Fran isn’t an unsympathetic, neurotic freak. “She wears dresses… she makes an effort,” she tells Paul Nolan
Vic Reeves & Bob Mortimer on Catterick, a radical departure for comedy’s most anarchic duo. Interview Paul Nolan
Perhaps it’s attributable to the noticeably low room temperature – the Ambassador, bizarrely, is tonight colder than even Dave Letterman’s notoriously igloo-like NY studio – but whatever the reason, New Jersey pop-rock masters Fountains Of Wayne are disappointingly sluggish getting out of the traps on the occasion of their debut Dublin gig.
Known from the TV sitcom as the Man who Behaves Badly, actor Neil Morrissey is confounding the laddish caricature with his work for an anti-landmine charity. In this candid interview with Paul Nolan, he also reflects on childhood trauma, death in the family, that affair with Amanda Holden and his encounters with Olivier, Burton and Mel Gibson. main photography Cathal Dawson
Known from the TV sitcom as the man who behaves badly, actor Neil Morrissey is confounding the laddish caricature with his work for an anti-landmine charity. In this candid interview with Paul Nolan, he also reflects on childhood trauma, death in the family, that affair with Amanda Holden and his encounters with Olivier, Burton and Mel Gibson.
He’s not a favourite with the Garda siochana, but he’s just sold out Vicar St. and Billy Connolly is raving about his work.
Having taken America by storm, Maroon 5 are showing the rest of the world their true colours.
Ladies and gentlemen, we are floating in space. A few tracks into Air’s stunning show at the Olympia and the redoubtable Nicolas Godin and Jean-Benoit Dunckel are already gently elevating us to a higher plane of consciousness.
The latest group of Brit indie upstarts make a play for the charts with this uninspired take on ‘60s psychedelia.
Equine motif aside, this track reminds me hugely of U2’s anguished hymn to tortured and tortuous relationships, ‘Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses’.
The debut single from the band formed by ex-Hole/Smashing Pumpkins bassist Melissa Auf Der Mar is a ditchwater-dull attempt to mine the same stoner-rock territory favoured by Queens Of The Stone Age, Kyuss et al.
Irish band influenced by Radiohead/Jeff Buckley make decent record shock!
To paraphrase The Simpsons’ uniquely oleaginous lawyer, Lionel Hutz, ‘Amazing’ is guilty of possessing the most spectacularly fraudulent title this side of The Never Ending Story. Avoid like the bubonic.
The publicity blurb for ‘Toxic’ heralds the track as “classic, commercial Britney, but with a darker, more dance-oriented edge”.
Disappointingly not a fresh musical venture from erstwhile Jim’ll Fix It supremo, Jimmy Saville, this is nonetheless a supremely accomplished slice of catchy quirk-pop from the veteran Dublin outfit.
What better way to gauge the state of contemporary hip-hop than checking out the latest singles from 50 Cent and Chingy, two of the genre’s brightest young things.
Master of the forlorn torch-song Will Oldham returns to the fold with an elegiac suite of plaintive, instrumental acoustica.
British ambient maestros Zero 7 were one of a plethora of groups to seize on the fresh stylistic blueprint provided by Air’s Moon Safari, and use it to further explore the new realm of dreamy soundscapes so brilliantly realised by Messrs Dunckel & Godin.
Fresh from a starring role in the Readers Poll, Josh Ritter has even more reasons to be cheerful – like touring with Joan Baez and getting to know Damien Rice.
The League Of Gentlemen’s Jeremy Dyson talks to Hoot Press about the celebrated quartet’s plans to conquer the world of film-making.
The most exciting merger of rock and dance since the heyday of The Stone Roses, the Happy Mondays and Primal Scream – meet The Rapture.
The most exciting merger of rock and dance since the heyday of The Stone Roses, the Happy Mondays and Primal Scream – meet The Rapture. Words Paul Nolan
He wrote speeches for Bertie and then criticised him in the press using a pseudonym. He turned down an offer to party with Bono. And Richard Boyd Barrett once nicked one of his crass albums. All this plus the importance of economics, the threat posed by the Bush administration and the truth about power are on the agenda, as Paul Nolan meets David McWilliams.
Ireland’s favourite New Yorker, Des Bishop has had to work for a living for his new TV show.
The home studio, the stadium gigs, the best-selling dvd – nope, it’s not rock’n’roll, it’s stand-up comedy. Pat Shortt talks about a boom year for mirth-making.
Like The Simpsons, Ali G and the PDs, Bo Selecta is a joke which has long since past its sell-by-date. I’ll take the Pepsi Challenge with this and Mel & Kim’s ‘Rockin’ Around The Xmas Tree’ any old day of the week. To be blunt, unlikely to find its way into many stockings this Yuletide.
Quick, quick – I need to make a cynical wisecrack about a whinging troubadour type before I explode! Ah, here’s Paddy Casey – that should do the trick. Yawnsome drive-time snoozefest which makes ‘The Blower’s Daughter’ sound like a cut from Bolt Thrower’s Realm Of Chaos. Not my cuppa meat, as you can see.
I stuck this in the CD player fully expecting the usual deathly dull singer-songwriter shenanigans, but, incredibly, had my sharply ingrained rock journo fastidiousness knocked for six by a storming electro-pop number. Almost despite myself, I’m hooked on the tune’s sizzling, Bowie-esque glam grooves within seconds. I don’t like the drugs but the drugs like me.
The latest skinny-hipped addition to the Domino indie-boy roster, Clearlake stealthily deliver another impeccably detailed portrait of provincial ennui.
The label which brought us The White Stripes, Electric Six and The Avalanches now treats us to this visionary marriage of melodramatic funk and Queen-like mock operatics.
Disappointingly not a cover of the Def Leppard track, this is instead a typically plodding pseudo-industrial workout from the perennially gloomy Devonshire boys.
Speaking of regressive childhood complexes, Jacko is back in the saddle for this lead-off single from yet another Crimbo cash-in anthology.
This is a typically rollicking, country-tinged blues number from one of the more intriguing young acts on the Brit indie scene.
The Papenfus brothers return to the fold with a plaintive piece of moody acoustica.
Kate Moss has talent shocker! Everybody’s favourite bi-pedal clotheshorse hooks up with the Scream team for a truly gorgeous slice of dreamy electro-psychedelia.
Hales has ploughed his own furrow in an admirably single-minded and low-key fashion, deservedly earning himself a loyal following for his Tindersticks/ Joy Division-indebted brand of spectral melancholia.
Hales has ploughed his own furrow in an admirably single-minded and low-key fashion, deservedly earning himself a loyal following for his Tindersticks/ Joy Division-indebted brand of spectral melancholia.
The great and the good of the Trinity philosophical society recently assembled to discuss not epistemology, theology or indeed any other class of “ology”, but rather to address the question, “Is music losing its right to artistic licence?”
The Flaming Lips return to the fold with this neatly packaged mini-album featuring four new tracks and a series of remixes from their 2002 opus, Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots.
Rik Mayall is back with a show that could be his rudest and most spectacular yet. Paul Nolan asks about the latest installment of bottom, and why he and Ade Eedmondson are the new Laurel & Hardy.
Rik Mayall is back with a show that could be his rudest and most spectacular yet. Paul Nolan asks about the latest installment of bottom, and why he and Ade Eedmondson are the new Laurel & Hardy.
As one half of D’unbelievables, Jon Kenny became one of Ireland’s most famous and successful entertainers. but the hard touring took its toll and, he believes, may even have contributed to the cancer which threatened not only his career but his life. now fully recovered, Kenny is back as a solo artist but one still hugely inspired by small-town Ireland and its rich crop of characters. Photo Cathal Dawson
Nelly is undoubtedly a charismatic performer with oodles of attitude and a raft of hip-shakingly funky singles in his repertoire.
Armando Iannucci is the man who created our favourite East Anglian superstar. And he’s no mean performer in his own right.
Opening with a predictably stunning video-screen blitzkrieg.
Silence is golden in the brilliant visual comedy of Men In Coats – but, off-stage, when Mick Dow opens his mouth he has some cracking tales to tell.
Killing Joke always stuck firmly to a resolutely contrary stance.
From stand-up and sit-com to comedy drama, Ed Byrne continues to spread his wings at the ambassador theatre.
Their placards are invariably visible at bin-charge protests – and, indeed, virtually any other street protest you care to mention. but do the SWP – and other left-wing parties frequently demonised by mainstream politicians really have something meaningful to offer?
Honing his Best-Of set, working on a “secret” documentary for RTE, being compared to Bill Hicks, lollygagging at Dr Quirkey’s… it’s just another day at the office for Des Bishop.
Hosting his own chat-show, running away with the circus and wrestling David O’Doherty whilst swathed in bubblewrap – it’s all in a day’s work for Irish comedy’s busiest performer, Jason Byrne.
For the duration of August each year, Edinburgh becomes a veritable treasure trove of artistic delights, playing host to the best in theatre, music, film and, of course, comedy.
Bringing danger and excitement back to music - that's the goal of Flint led by the eponymous firestarter.
Mothers disowned their kids. The kids fought each other. And the fathers… well, those who weren’t utterly inconsolable with grief did the only thing any grown man could do in such a situation – they phoned Joe Duffy and gave him an earful. For a few feverish, unhinged days in the build-up to World Cup 2002, the fallout from the Roy Keane/Mick McCarthy bust-up in Saipan divided the nation in a manner not seen since, well…
Fresh from masterminding yet another historic victory – this time, Laois’ first Leinster championship in 57 years – gaelic football legend Mick O’Dwyer recalls famous days with Kerry and offers his customarily forthright views on professionalism, soccer at Croker, drink sponsorship, booing the Taoiseach and a changing Ireland. All this plus the little-known Louis Walsh connection!
All girl shiny happy pop combo Skyn Deep are determined to learn from the mistakes of others.
Triple Espresso, a show currently enjoying great popularity in Dublin (and the rest of the world) is helping to give family entertainment a good name.
"Gray is his usual head-shaking, good-spirited self"
2fm’s Dave Fanning shares his thoughts on the ghost of Witnness past. And – inevitably – some other stuff! Trying to keep up Paul Nolan
He may be unhappy about once again being forced to climb the interview treadmill, but Eels frontman E soon relaxes sufficiently to discuss swimming with sharks in the American music industry and why turning into Beck isn’t on the agenda just yet
Après Match member Gary Cooke on Joe Duffy, body piercings, and the perils of impersonating Ireland’s most belligerent broadcaster. Playing intermediary Paul Nolan
A record which, overall, is something of a skewed treat
Hot Press trawls Kilkenny city for the highlights of this year’s Cat Laughs Festival.
Perhaps drained from the effort of sculpting such a monumental opening, McAloon eschews lyrics altogether for the remainder of the record, opting instead to create a supremely elegant suite of plaintive chamber music and jazz-soaked ambience.
Aussie stand-up comic Kevin ‘Bloody’ Wilson on the traumas of ‘Bali belly’ and gold-mining in Kalgoorlie.
Birthday boy Stuart Braithwaite enthuses about the making of Mogwai’s staggering new album Happy Songs For Happy People.
Having drummed his way round the world with Therapy?, Graham Hopkins is now upfront singing with his own band Halite. But as Paul Nolan finds out, he’s no indie Phil Collins
Whilst Girls Aloud’s debut album, Sound Of The Underground, is a reasonably diverting slice of mainstream pop, it’s about as substantial as tissue-paper and twice as expendable.
Righting political wrongs is all very well and fine, but what Mark Thomas enjoys most is fucking people right off. except Paul Nolan that is who talks to him about his new stand-up show, A Minor Celebrity Discusses War Crimes
A very enjoyable performance from a quietly promising outfit.
The Vines are cruelly exposed for what they really are: a glorified Aussie bar-band
Whatever else you say about Marilyn Manson, the guy sure is resilient.
Evan Dando may have very mixed memories of his days with the Lemonheads and hanging out with Kurt and Courtney but with the dark stuff consigned to the past, he’s much happier where he is today.
No longer the nascent, impressionable - though hugely ambitious - young quintet who unleashed the blood-splattered masterpiece The Bends in the mid-'90s, nor the newly crowned kings of modern rock who enjoyed virtually unprecedented levels of acclaim circa-OK Computer, they have instead settled into a role as sort of latter-day alt. culture godfathers
Dark circumstances surrounding the making of her new album and the everyday hassles of fame notwithstanding, Macy Gray assures Paul Nolan that, for her, the thrill has definitely not gone
The Llamas records are truly lush affairs, drawing on everything from Beach Boys-style dream pop-harmonies and continental, Gainsbourg-referencing strings to ethnic rhythms and mellow post-rock ambience to create a dazzling aural tapestry.
A woman encouraging her boyfriend to “shit his leg off” during bad sex, doctors diagnosing symptomless comas, death through prolonged ejaculation – looks like Chris Morris is back on TV again. investigating the nocturnal goings-on: Paul Nolan
"When the group shift the dynamic completely and segue into a typically skyscraping rendition of ‘Revelate’, the effect is dizzying. And as Glen howls, “My human fate/My revelate” with all the fury of Prince Hamlet after being confronted by his father’s ghost, it makes you think Pat McCabe was absolutely spot-on when he pointed to Hansard as being one of the most gifted lyricists around."
"Those who have discerned the link between Goldfrapp’s sartorial caprice and her tendency toward seemingly arbitrary shifts in musical direction will have twigged what’s in store on Black Cherry"
Lead by leather-skirt clad, shape-throwing glam diva Mika, the ‘Bomb deliver a supremely melodic collection of glitter-flecked garage-punk, reminiscent of early-’90s Nirvana faves Shonen Knife.
Public Enemy spokesman Professor Griff on the group’s legacy and the current state of hip-hop – though not, remarkably, the war in Iraq.
Having admitted that he really doesn’t know what he’s talking about, Brendan Dempsey briefs Paul Nolan on the upcoming Montreal Comedy Festival. and other stuff
With something of a renaissance having taken place in the Dublin independent scene over the past few years, now seems as good a time as any to bring ourselves fully up to speed with the sounds emanating from the Belfast underground.
Love, relationships, dating – and the first Diana song since the reworked ‘Candle In The Wind’. Sarah Nixey takes Paul Nolan on a guided tour of Black Box Recorder’s new album Passionoia.
It says something about the degree to which Kitt has honed his live shows that he can afford to play such crowd favourites as ‘Song From Hope Street’ and ‘You Know What I Want To Know’ early in the set, whilst effortlessly retaining momentum and audience participation for the remainder of the gig.
Dara O’Briain on the pressures of getting a laugh on live tv every saturday night. words Paul Nolan
Having one’s bare arse dragged along sandpaper is one thing – but having said raw arse doused in salt and vinegar is something else again. Paul Nolan meets the team behind the UK’s answer to Jackass, Dirty Sanchez
Lemon Jelly shows are, above all, tremendous fun to attend.
Steve-O, the man best known for stapling his penis to his scrotum, on the scariest stunts, life after Jackass, and being empowered by going backstage with Mötley Crue.
The boy looks at Johnny – Paul Nolan meets Johnny Ramone, whose legendary group are now the subject of a star-studded tribute album
Nightmares On Wax mastermind George Evelyn on dirty funk grooves, goin’ to Goa and judging Amsterdam’s cannabis cup.
It may be the time of year for staying indoors, but there are plenty of comic treats around to keep you entertained, including a brace of top class new TV shows and the return of one Christopher Morris.
With the truly spellbinding vocals of The Tycho Brahe’s Carol Keogh captivating the audience from the off, the suprisingly formal guitar/bass/drums/keyboards line-up masterfully wove a supremely atmospheric, hypnotic wall of sound.
Yes, it’s the all-new, all-chuckling, all-giggling, all-grinning Dylan Moran. Well, not quite, but as Paul Nolan discovers, portraits of the stand-up as a difficult interviewee are rather wide of the mark
Still most famous in this part of the world for ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’, la rapper Coolio has certainly kept himself busy in the eight years since that hit. Movies, charity work and an appearance on Open House are all in a day’s work for the artist formerly known as Artis Leon Ivey Jr.
Sum 41 energetically tear through their resolutely one paced (ie. extremely fast) back catalogue for just over an hour, without a single concession to either varying the dynamics or just simple good taste
Comparing the insipid, whiney ramblings of The Offspring and Rancid to the incendiary anthems of movement-instigators The Sex Pistols, The New York Dolls and The Ramones is like comparing a firecracker to a nuclear explosion. But then you already knew that
0ver the past twelve months, Daniel Kitson has risen to prominence following his Perrier award winning show at the Edinburgh fringe, and his celebrated appearance on Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights but all the bespectacled comic really wants is to be recognised as a stand-up guy.
Dublin art-rockers Rollers/Sparkers are currently earning critical garlands for their debut EP, Geography For The Leaving erudite band member, John McMahon, here holds forth on the local music scene and forsaking academia for rock’n’roll.
With little to offer in the visuals department – five blokes playing guitars whilst remaining stationary having lost its allure many years ago – The Thrills instead hope to get by on sheer pop class instead.
By the time the album shuffles into life with the opening ‘Future Proof’, it feels like Massive Attack have never been away
When Rubyhorse quit their native Cork for the US in 1997, they had no game plan. Now they’re being hailed as one of the rock hopes for 2003, with appearances on Letterman and Conan O’Brian to their credit – as well as an extraordinary collaboration with the late George Harrison.
Avenue is a largely inessential addition to a genre already clogged to breaking point.
Comedy hit a spectacular high in 2002 with the success of The Office, The League of Gentlemen and Bachelor’s Walk. But there may be even better to come this year, as three generations of Irish comic talent tell us.
This time last year, Mike Skinner of The Streets was a complete unknown. 12 months later, he reflects on being nominated for the Mercury Music Prize, shrugging off the attentions of Damon Albarn, turning down a stack of film roles and partying in Dublin. “There’s been a lot of mad moments,” he acknowledges
Never the most self-effacing character to begin with, Craig David’s ego appears to have finally got the better of him.
He’s collaborated with Bono, Mick Jagger, and Destiny’s Child, hung out with Bill Clinton and co-wrote the biggest selling rap album of all time. but that’s only the beginning. The multi-talented Wyclef Jean here discusses George W. Bush, the death of his father and why Michael Jackson might not be such a strange guy after all
After such an explosive opening, the JJs have difficulty maintaining the pace, and there’s a definite mid-gig lull.
For the most part, whether Folds is encouraging the crowd to act as a makeshift brass section, or playfully throwing in a snippet of ‘Misirlou’ from the Pulp Fiction soundtrack, this is music guaranteed to put a smile on your face
Barnes is quite clearly a gifted musician. His slide guitar work is mightily impressive, and one can hear echoes of the dustbowl epics of Ry Cooder
this record is a messy, immature and thoroughly enjoyable romp through a cigarette-butt littered, beer-stained teenage wasteland
Will college improve your love-life? Is promiscuity rife on the campuses? Was Animal House, in fact, a masterpiece of cinema verite? We sought the views of those in the know
Will college improve your love-life? Is promiscuity rife on the campuses? Was Animal House, in fact, a masterpiece of cinema verite? We sought the views of those in the know
The sheer breadth of material covered in third-level courses represents a daunting challenge to many first-year students arriving fresh from school. However, there are plenty of practical tips you can follow to improve your study techniques
Former Emotional Fish front-man Ger Whelan aka Jerry Fish has taken an unusual-but-winning route with this project, rounding up a diverse array of local talent to partake in a quirky, upbeat collection
Richard Ashcroft spent the best part of the ’90s on a quest to make one of the great rock albums with The Verve. Having succeeded with Urban Hymns, he promptly broke up the band. Now, with the imminent release of his second solo album, Human Conditions, an upbeat Ashcroft discusses his excitement about collaborating with Brian Wilson, his youthful adventures in clubland, and why The Verve had to split
Alligator are certainly a good band, but this writer, at least, would venture that they’re still a considerable distance from greatness
A solid night's entertainment
They began as an acid house act doing a disco cover of Neil Young's 'Only Love Can Break Your Heart'. Then they took a break, discovered big beat and became wine waiters for cult author Douglas Coupland. There's never a dull moment with Saint Etienne
Life On Other Planets is not going to be a major cross-over album, but it thoroughly deserves a place in any serious record collection
Although still in their teens, the career of English popsters the Sugababes has been more eventful than most bands twice their age. Co-founder Mutya Buena tells us how they pulled through the dark times and why she’s pleasantly shocked at the NME’s coverage of the band
DIV have found themselves a somewhat mellower groove
A mesmerising collage of music library, found sounds, Rhodes and breakbeat
Toploader specialise in an uncomplicated form of rootsy, denim-clad soft rock not a million miles from Richie Sambora and co.
No amount of slick production can hide the fact that far too many of these songs are threadbare grooves wandering aimlessly in search of a tune
An enjoyable collection of sweetly melodic curios
With a pair of sunglasses perched atop his head, Brokaw sits on a stool centre stage and accompanies himself on electric guitar and foot-operated percussion. What's most surprising about the evening is the amount of musical diversity he's able to extract from such limited instrumentation
They are heavy and they’re brothers. Dublin skank rockers Heavy Flow are showing why the phrase “jazz-rock fusion” needn’t mean Spinal Tap
Paul Nolan talks to Gallic dance duo Rinocerose and discovers that they count a certain Madonna Ciccone among their fans
Although the momentum builds slowly, once the band hit their stride they're unstoppable
Jimi Tenor utilises kitsch music and gauche showmanship not because he wants to take the piss, but because he positively adores such behaviour.
Sadly, this record isn’t quite the sum of its parts. Having said that, there are some superb moments here.
The soundtrack features eight tracks from the canine one himself, and contributions from any hip-hop crew who happened to have a free weekend around recording time
David Gray is an undeniably superb performer. His passion for his music is overpowering.
The show really takes off a few tracks in with ‘Whale Bones’
There’s something a little too laid-back about the whole evening, and perhaps therein lies a dilemma for Healy as an artist.
The show catches fire over the next few minutes...
Classic songs by David Bowie, The Velvet Underground and Kraftwerk feature on this album of cover versions, but it reeks of contrivance
Playing in front of a number of large video screens, Hopper for the main part play it by the indie rulebook
For their fourth record, Fridge have opted for the minimalist route, to take in elements of contemplative jazz and even modern classical
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