News From the North Double Dose

6 04 2010

To make up for missing a fortnight-here’s a double dose of NI band news that ran in previous issues of Hot Press. Don’t say I’m not good to you.


Words: Edwin McFee

Vol 34 Issue 04

This fortnight we’ve mostly been freezing our unmentionables off and been grumbling about the fact that February sucks ass, so in a bid to look on the brighter side of life we’ve decided to turn our attentions this issue to June 5, 2010. Why June 5 you ask? Well that’s the date when NI’s biggest band (no, not D-Ream, Snow Patrol you fools) play a very special homecoming show in Ward Park, Bangor. This is only one of a handful of outdoor shows the band will play all year and to make it extra special they’ve roped in General Fiasco for support duties. By that stage, GF will be dominating the world from their secret underground bunker if their debut record Buildings is anything to go by (out March 22 via Infectious Records) and keep your peepers peeled to this column for more news on the show as and when we get it.

For the past few years, NI’s finest alt rockers Yakuza have sadly been indulging in a bit of Odin-Sleep, but much like that one eyed all-father of Norse mythology (see-we can do high brow references when we want to) the four-piece have returned with a vengeance in 2010 and have been playing a gaggle of great gigs as a warm up for the release of their second album (which we’ve yet to hear hint hint…). In addition to their live activity, they’ve also made a new video for their song ‘What Were They, Psychos?’ which was directed by Darren McNanney (who also provided the album artwork for their first slab of wax One Nation Under Awed) and suitably insane it is too. If you want to watch the clip for yourself then check out this link

 Staying roughly on topic for once, everyone’s new favourite band Two Door Cinema Club have made a great video for their superb single ‘Undercover Martyn.’ Adored by the likes of Kanye West (who we’ve heard loves the Bangor trio as much as he likes making an arsehole out of himself on live TV shows) and Mark Hoppus from Blink 182 (y’know, the one who isn’t covered in tattoos or in Angles and Airwaves) Two Door can do no wrong right now and their video is pretty special. Check it out here

Finally if you haven’t heard enough about music videos-then we’ve got good news for you. Producers of a new local TV show are on the hunt for new and exciting clips from unsigned bands. All you have to do to get involved is email with a link to your video along with full contact details and that’s that. Simples.


Words: Edwin McFee

Vol 34 Issue 06

On April 5, seven-piece whiskey soaked troubadours Captain Kennedy release their new double A-Side single ‘Scratch That Penny’/’Sweetest Friend’ via all major download sites as a pre-cursor to their hugely anticipated debut record which comes out in the summer. Last month Hot Press became the first ones to hear the single besides the band (yes, get us) and both tracks really are songs to fall in love to and ‘Sweetest Friend’ in particular has greatness stamped all over it, so make sure you (virtually) pick it up. For more information on the Lurgan lads and lass, check out

What are you doing on July 3rd? Well, if the answer is “Sitting around and secretly wishing there was a music festival taking place somewhere in Mid-Ulster” then your dreams have come true as Banbridge are hosting their very own open air bash. Taking place beside Corbet Lake, the event is dubbed Take It To The Bridge and features And So I Watch You From Afar, A Plastic Rose, Panama Kings and others on the line-up. Tickets for the event are £25 and for details on where you can snag some check out

LaFaro release their long awaited debut album on May 10 via Smalltown America and play a gig in the Menagerie in Belfast on April 26. Sadly tickets sold out within about three minutes of going on sale, but knowing the LaFaro boys it won’t take them too long to announce more shows around the rest of Ireland. Of course, we’d love to be able to tell you that their self titled slab of wax is the veritable cat’s pyjamas, but as no-one has sent us a copy yet we haven’t a baldy notion what to expect (we haven’t worked out if this hint is subtle or not…). Altogether now-BOOOOOOO!

Newry/Warrenpoint metallers Ozzmium have unveiled their amazing clip for ‘Worse Than Ever’ this fortnight and it’s an absolute belter of a video. In the process of making the promo they destroyed a cottage, broke some fingers, blew out their ear drums, smashed bottles, got involved in a domestic dispute and generally sweated like a fat bloke at a game of paintball to create the clip and you can watch it by clicking on the link Fans of Killswitch Engage and loud noises going BOOM will love this lot, so check out for more.

News From The North Week 39

9 09 2009

About a  year and a half ago I jumped aboard the good ship Hot Press. Initially I was asked to write a fortnightly column about NI bands for the Hit the North section and it kinda all grew from there to being one of the main publications I work for. I’ve decided to reprint the column here once a new issue of the magazine hits the stands, so although some of the news might be a little out of date, hopefully it’ll shed some light on acts from my neck of the woods.

Below is the column from our Electric Picnic issue (Vol 33 Issue 16).


Words: Edwin McFee

We start this fortnight’s NI news with a great story about the criminally underrated Delirium Tremens. The Belfast-based four-piece have just signed a deal with Audio Ill and will be recording their debut album over the next couple of months. The DT’s have been on the rise of late thanks to their ear-gasm inducing single ‘Barabus’ (which you can hear for free by clicking on and if we get a few more like that then the band will be unstoppable in 2010. Congratulations boys!

Surf punk duo Girls Names will be unleashing two cassette tapes of material through Caff/Lick Records this month. The label has released material by the likes of Lucky Dragons and High Places and Girls Names are an impressive addition to their roster. Both tapes (named ‘C-10 1’ and ‘C-10 2’ respectively) will be strictly limited to 25 copies each and you can buy them from the band at the Black Market at the Black Box in Belfast or from the band via their MySpace Fans of Lovvers should adore what they’ve got to offer.

Derry’s Japanese Popstars are set to release a live album this September. The much loved dance act have put the finishing touches to We Just Are: Live and there will also be three brand new tracks on the slab of wax. Sep 21 is the date for your diaries and for more details keep checking

Seven-piece folky types Captain Kennedy have given their website a bit of a makeover recently. The Americana aficionados have spruced up their blog and you can find out all of their latest developments by clicking here

Fresh from playing their first ever gig, Belfast’s Uber Glitterati have decided to celebrate this latest milestone in their career by posting up a “100 per cent unofficial” remix of the Lily Allen single ’22,’ which for our money sounds better than the original. But don’t take our word for it. Go have a listen for yourself

Finally, if you’re in the North West this weekend (particularly on Aug 29) then check out Smalltown America’s mini festival This Ain’t No Picnic which takes place at St. Columb’s Hall, Derry. The all day event initially started out life in London but has since relocated to Smalltown chief Andrew Ferris’ hometown and features Future of the Left, Lafaro, Panama Kings, the Beat Poets, the Dangerfields, Spectator, Black Bear Saloon, Stereo War Favourites and Mr Ferris himself. Doors are at 3pm and it’s £8 in. 

PS-The new issue (feautring my Kasabian and Dizzee Rascal interviews) is out tomorrow, so keep an eye out.