- 04 Jul 20
The County Cavan native brought her world-class voice and charming humility to the Instagram live supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Seconds into ‘Blue Valentine’, Áine Cahill cut the song short with a laugh. She wanted to respond to a guy named Alex in the Instagram chat — to tell him that his invitation to play in Brazil cracked her up. After sharing a grin with her keyboardist, Jake Richardson, she launched back into her ethereal, jazz-inflected crooning.
This was a theme of Friday’s performance on the Hot Press Lockdown Sessions’ Y&E Series: the staggering contrast between Cahill’s otherworldly vocals and her charming, intimate personality. One moment, Cahill would banter with a fan, and the next, she’d belt a high note powerful enough to shatter glass. It’s this combination of relatability and raw talent that has earned Cahill praise from The Guardian and The Sunday Times and landed her singles on national radio.
Cahill sang several of these hits on the livestream supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. First came ‘Blood Diamonds’, an anthem for unashamed materialism that Cahill dedicated to “all the bad bitches in the world.” Then came ‘Black Dahlia’, a track which gave Cahill a breakout moment when she was invited to perform it on TodayFM on the weekend of her 21st birthday.
Finally, Cahill played ‘Plastic’. Before growling the song’s soulful intro, Cahill said “this is probably one some people might know.” That’s an understatement: ‘Plastic’ won Best Single at the 2017 Pure M Awards and has been played almost 1.2 million times on Spotify.
Cahill has said in interviews that she takes inspiration from the noir-ish aesthetics of 1950s and 60s Hollywood. And perhaps the most striking moment of her stream came when she let those influences take the stage, covering Cher’s 1966 hit ‘Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)'. Swaying slowly, Cahill gave an a capella rendition of the classic, her rich voice filling all our homes with drama, nostalgia and charisma.
Check out Áine Cahill’s performance, supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, on the Hot Press Instagram below.
Upcoming acts on the Y&E Series this week:
Saturday, 4 July: The Winter Passing
Emerging out of Dublin’s thriving DIY punk and hardcore scene, The Winter Passing have forged a reputation as one of the city’s most inventive indie/emo outfits. Originally formed by siblings Rob and Kate Flynn and guitarist Jamie Collison in their hometown of Tipperary, the band have become known for their fiery DIY ethos – pressing their own records and tapes, and booking their own shows across the world.
Sunday, 5 July: Roisin El Cherif
Irish-Palestinian singer Roisin El Cherif draws influence from Tracy Chapman, Stevie Nicks and Daughter to craft a sound that blurs the lines between folk, country and indie-pop. Following the release of her acclaimed Glass House EP in 2018, she returned this year with her moving new single ‘Cross Your Mind’.