- 14 Dec 19
Kilkenny four-piece The Wha captivated the crowd at their first ever Dublin headliner. If last night was any indication of their potential, it's sure they're headed full speed towards success.
“How do you even know who we are?” the band asked me before the gig started. Well, The Wha, I don’t know how to break it to you, but it’s kind of my job to know the best and brightest of Ireland’s music scene. And – wait for it – you guys just happen to fit the bill there…
I first caught wind of Kilkenny’s finest in a mundane press release about the music video for their first studio single, ‘Innocents’. Lads. This song is the real deal. One single later and The Wha scored a supporting slot for none other than Two Door Cinema Club (where they knocked it out of the park, if I may say so myself) and landed their first headline gig in Dublin, Upstairs at Whelan’s.
From the driving pop punk of 'Innocents' to the swingy bridge of yet-to-be-released 'Oh God No' and the rock'n'roll groove of the unreleased 'Call My Name', The Wha have a sound far too big for Upstairs at Whelan's. The real treat to their tracks, however, is the ubiquitous bass line à la bassist Marek Lech – an oft overlooked feature of music, but in the case of The Wha, it's the driving force of many of their songs.
Calls for one more tune rang loud as soon as the final beat of 'Book of Sand' rang out – a song that, I must mention, made me question whether The Wha themselves invented guitar playing. "It's a Christmas present!" joked vocalist and guitarist Finn Cusak, before indulging the crowd in one final song, 'Foster Wallace Blues', which had the crowd dancing like crazy.
A gig almost too good to be true, The Wha delivered on all my expectations and then some. Seriously lads, you played 11 original songs last night and they were all brilliant. When can we expect the album?
Signed to Chess Club – who, dare I say, have the absolute best lineup in town currently – it seems there’s no destiny besides one of stellar success for The Wha. Keep doing what you’re doing, kids. Soon you’ll be asking, “How don’t you know who we are?”