- 01 Dec 23
Full-throttle alt-rockers, Hammond Organ revivalists and Wu-Tang worshipping rappers are all part of this month's rich Irish musical tapestry.
Wet Leg, Bikini Kill, Le Tigre and Taylor Swift are among the reference points as self-proclaimed feminist alt-rockers The Amniotics follow up their excellent ‘Boomerang’ single with the even more excellent ‘HMPB’, which stands for ‘Heavy Metal Punk Band’.
”The song is about immaturity,” rues the band’s Rebecca Walsh. “From the ages of 15 to 20 I followed every good and bad impulse I had, and got used to some aspect of my life always being in chaos. Also, I was sick of dealing with lads who thought taking inspiration from both Megadeth and the Sex Pistols was ground-breaking.”
As deadly live as they are on record, the Dublin quartet include 2fm and Nova among their radio champions and will hopefully get more widespread support with this latest release.
Breaking out of Limerick is DATQIDEXCEL - pronounced dat-kid-excel - whose MC-ing skills are evident for all to hear on slick new single ‘Daily Thoughts’, which is co-produced by Luke Culhane and West London hotshot Jaden JDN Fitzgerald.
Introduced to us by Limrapper elder statesman God Knows, the 18-year-old was encouraged to pursue his gift by his mother - quality parenting! - and includes Headie One, Central Cee, Stormzy and Dave among his musical heroes.
Already well-known from busking on Grafton Street and supporting the likes of Soda Blonde, Emma Langford, I Have A Tribe and Calum Bowie, Gemma Cox impresses with new single ‘Behind Your Eyes’, a dreamy power ballad redolent of Sara Bareilles.
KFM’s 2023 Irish Music Month ‘A New Local Hero’ pick, her full-throttle vocals and knack for penning a memorable pop hook have already caught the ears of John Barker whose Monday night Tilt show on 103.2 Dublin City FM is essential listening for Irish music fans.
Having racked up over a million streams with his Uly and Rob de Boer-assisted ‘Superman’ track, Patrick Stefan brings us the equally swoonsome ‘Don’t Be Afraid’ which, thanks be to God, doesn’t sound remotely like Ed Sheeran or Dermot Kennedy.
Yep, the Irish-Dutch singer-songwriter is doing entirely his own acoustic thing with an accompanying live solo looping video assembled by Cian at the Mash House.
The digital B-side, ‘Fruitfly’, also falls into the perfectly crafted Americana category and is deserving of much radio love.
Killers and Strokes fans will adore Post-Party, a Dublin threesome who love their synths as much as they do their jangly guitars and follow up debut EP We’re Not Getting Any Younger with the dangerously addictive ‘Lap Around The Sun’.
It explains why they’ve been snapped up by Universal Music Ireland and made it onto numerous Spotify playlists.
Having mourned the, sniff, passing of The Hot Sprockets, we’re delighted to report that some of their members have regrouped as DOGPOND and released the ace ‘Kilnamanagh Blues’.
Written on a Hammond Organ and nodding to classic American West Coast rock, it gets the official launch treatment on November 24 when they play Upstairs @ Whelan’s.
A&R Dept. faves Venus Grrrls knock it out of the grunge park again with ‘Hex’, a female empowerment anthem that reminds Hot Press’ more, ahem, mature staff of the mighty L7 and Hole.
Fronted by Dubliner Grace Kelly – it’s her real name - the Leeds quintet have already found favour with BBC Radios 1 and 6 Music, Radio X, Sirius XM, Amazing Radio, Spotify and Amazon.
Their third single since Ms. K’s recovery from leukaemia, it’s impeccably produced and bodes extremely well for their debut album which is due in 2024.
Dublin sextet Akrobat return with ‘Verlaine’, a suitably art-rocky tribute to late Television man Tom Verlaine whose ‘Marquee Moon’ they hold incredibly dear.
While fuelled by their collective love of the 1970s New York scene, it also manages to sound thrillingly modern with Turkish singer Selen Korkutan a star in the making.
We’re mightily impressed by ‘Take Another Piece’, the latest darkly melodic gem from Scattered Ashes, a Dublin quartet with goth and post-punk sensibilities - we’re talking Echo & The Bunnymen, Joy Division and Interpol.
A hard gigging bunch, they’re just returned from playing at a festival in Porto and head out on UK tour in February with Meryl Streek.
She might only be 18 but Anike Akano’s ‘Passing By’ is a highly accomplished debut single that showcases her sweet soul voice and ability to inject her songs with no little drama.
”I wrote this when I was lowkey in the pits,” she reflects. “I was 16-years old, lost, lonely and felt like I was doing this whole life thing completely wrong. All I knew to do in moments of desperation was to pour my heart out on a page.”
Catch the Dubliner live on December 8 when she joins Adam O’Rua and Tara Devi for a hometown headliner in the Workman’s Cellar.