- 23 Nov 20
Whether you like it dreamy, funky, poppy or spitting nails angry, we’ve got you covered for hot new Irish music.
We love the slice of ethereal dream pop – New Wave of Shoegaze, anyone? – which has been served up by October Fires.
Recorded in Dundalk’s Black Mountain Studios with James Darkin at the helm, ‘In The Gloom’ follows on from the Leixlip quartet’s debut Everybody Else EP, which gained widespread Irish radio support.
With Ciaran Diver overseeing the equally impressive video, this should lift them another couple of rungs up the ladder.
Dublin’s Scattered Ashes put their self-confessed Joy Division, Sisters Of Mercy, Bauhaus and Gang Of Four influences to excellent use on the darkly malevolent ‘Love Is Not An Option’.
Receiving its digital release on November 20, its dominated by Ben Downes’ choppy guitar and the Curtis-esque crooning of Robert Dalton who rocks a mean white polo neck.
Fresh from wowing us with her virtual Irish Music Week showcase gig, Jackie Beverly releases the Lapsley and London Grammar-inspired ‘Sea Glass’.
“Written about a close friend who was struggling in life, it’s a song that explores finding beauty in the mundane,” says Jackie who’s formed a formidable partnership with Darragh Nolan from Asta Kalapa studios.
It starts off politely and then grabs you round the ears with its heavenly harmonies and equally celestial cello embellishments. We like it a lot.
Rebekah Fitch (pictured) has teamed up with her clever clogs 17-year-old brother to produce an old school arcade game, which accompanies her swooping and soaring ‘Game Over’ single.
A Hot Press Hot For 2019 pick, the Belfast singer wrote it hoping to capture “the childlike hope and magic and lust for life” that keeps her going in these perilous times.
From where we’re sitting it’s mission accomplished.
Michelle Grimes puts Limerick firmly on the pop R’n’B map with ‘Going Going Gone’, which should appeal to all Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Dua Lipa fans.
Not content with having Denise Van Outen, Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh giving her the thumbs-up, Michelle has performed to over 20,000 people as part of the Pride In London festivities, and sung for the King and Queen of Belgium, and former Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and equally former President Trump when the orange one visited Ireland last year.
Former Billy Barry Stage School brat Donna Bissett mines a rich seam of ‘70s soul and funk on ‘Get Down’.
Working professionally since she was 14, the Dubliner has appeared as both a dancer and back-up singer at Eurovision, graced various theatre productions and generally worked her socks off in pursuit of stardom.
This suggests she’s a better chance than most.
Tyrone singer Bernadette Morris builds on the success of her All The Ways You Wander album with ‘These Ruins’, a co-write with Mark McCambridge, AKA Arborist, which was inspired by a trip (remember those?) to Budapest.
Redolent of such alt. country artists as Margo Price and Kacey Musgraves, it’s the first taster from album number two, which will be with us before Christmas and includes co-writes with Eleanor McEvoy, Johnny Brady and Ríoghnach Connolly.
Ragerra – the name is a riff on the Irish word for late-night rambler – give their FX pedals a workout on ‘BRUTAL’, which fully merits its block caps.
The missing link between Queens Of The Stone Age and Elvis with a bit of LCD Soundsystem thrown in for good measure, the Dublin trio also have an album, Primal Features, ready to rock and roll in early 2021.
With gigging on ‘hold’ for the time being, Mark Boyle, Barry Monahan and Luke Alford are working on a series of interactive events to promote it.
The Tipperary-reared, Limerick-based Gavin DaVinci ups the hip-hop ante with the hard as tungsten ‘Council House Freestlye’.
“We grew up in an ‘80s council cottage, it’s always been cramped but full of memories,” he reflects. “I’d like to buy it at some stage to own it and get my mother a new house with a bigger kitchen in Kilkenny because she thinks it’s lovely. This is why I rap now. And this is for all my council families.”
Gavin’s previous superscumbagmode album and Please, Don’t Listen To My Shit If You Love Me EP are just as uncompromising, and available from his Bandcamp.