Church of Noise 5

23 06 2010

Here’s a reprint of Church of Noise 5 that ran in issue 199 of the  Big List.

Church of Noise

Local music news

Earlier this year, your humble correspondent made his way down to the Square Peg in Warrenpoint to help out judging a battle of the bands. With six acts on the bill and the prize worth £2500 it was a tough decision choosing a winner, but ultimately we gave the nod to Silhouette (AKA Shauna Tohill and her band of musical marauders). This month she releases her new single ‘Volume Destroyed’ on May 24 via VM Records (which was part of her prize) and while we have yet to hear a copy at the time of going to print, we’re sure it’s an amazing piece of work. Produced by knob twiddler extraordinaire Neal Calderwood, the release coincides with a full-on Irish tour and Shauna has also planned a special party in Belfast on May 29 to officially launch the slab of wax so keep your eyes peeled on Here’s hoping she saves us some cake.

 Remember how a few issues back we mentioned the new Take it to the Bridge festival in Banbridge ( Well it seems like the organisers have scored a bit of a coo as they’ve managed to bag themselves the Futureheads to headline the day (not literally of course, as that would be illegal). Yes readers, the Sunderland-based affecionados of tight jeans and spiky riffs are making their way over for the bash on July 3 and a little birdy tells us that our mention of the chicken burgers from Friar Tuck’s was what ultimately sealed the deal for the four-piece…

News reaches us this issue that Derry’s dance supremos Japanese Popstars have inked a deal with the mighty EMI/Virgin records. Now that they’re backed by possibly one of the largest labels in the universe, their as yet untitled second record (out June 5) should see the trio become one of the biggest acts on the scene today and we can’t think of a band more deserving. Staying with the trio for a second, they release a new single called ‘Destroy’ on May 28 and it features vocals by legendary funk punk warbler Jon Spencer (from the Blues Explosion) and very good it is too. Expect Decky and Co. to be announcing festival dates soon as they slowly unveil their plans for global domination.

Finally, if you’ve even the slightest interest in punk rock, local history, or even (gasp) politics, then we urge you to check out the fantastic documentary about the much missed venue/youth centre Giros, which was lovingly put together by NVTV. For those (like this writer) who didn’t grow up in Belfast during the 80s and 90s and also for those who perhaps have never heard the name before, Giros was a much needed home away from home for hundreds of punks and alternative kids over the years and provided a space for gigs and spoken word performances and also featured a vegetarian/vegan café. While the building closed in 2004, its spirit still lives on in some of the original volunteers and the documentary features some great interviews from the old guard and it’s well worth a watch. Check it out here

See y’all next month folks. Up the Irons.


Church Of Noise #1

15 02 2010

As some of you may have noticed-I’ve started doing a column in the Big List called the Church of Noise. It’s basically a round up of what’s happening music wise in the north with me throwing in a few willy and boobie jokes for good measure. It’s one of those columns where they require a pic to go along with it, so I’m sending in a daft photo in every month because I’d be mortified if anyone thought I was one of “those” writers with the really serious, photo-shopped  mug shot….

Oh and while I am getting my blog on-check out this week’s Hot Press for (yet another) photo of me plus a biog in the featured contributor section.

Anyway-here’s Church of Noise #1

Church of Noise

Local music news with NME and Hot Press scribe Edwin McFee

In the immortal words of NI’s greatest band Therapy?-“Welcome to the church of noise.” Each month we aim to bring you all the latest happenings in the local music scene plus news of gigs, albums and any scandalous goings on we hear. So, if you’re a fan of Fighting with Wire, General Fiasco and more, or if you’re that dude from Ajenda who keeps emailing me about their demo then your luck’s in as this is where you will get to read about it all.

First off, fresh from bothering Coronation Street viewers’ ear-holes with their ace single ‘Long May You Reign’ by way of the Discover Northern Ireland advert, John Shelly and the Creatures are set to unveil their debut album ‘Dinosaur.’ Released on March 5 via iTunes, the band are about to undertake an extensive tour down south, will feature in session on former Late Late Show presenter Pat Kenny’s radio on show on RTE Radio 1 and my friends south of the border tell me the band have been making plenty of new fans already. But enough talk about all these shows happening down Mexico way we hear you cry, when are they playing here? Well readers, the band will launch their album with a gig in Auntie Annie’s on March 4 and support comes from Queer Giraffes and Before Machines.

It seems that being a bass player in a local band these days is a bit like being the coolest kid in school as there are a ton (well ok, not literally unless NI bands have gone on a pie eating rampage) of acts looking for someone to bring the low end. If we mentioned them all, then this issue of the Big List would be like the Never Ending Story (only without the flying furry dudes and sweet soundtrack) so we’ll pick three bands in need at random. First up Katie and the Carnival seek some four string action and if you think you’re up to the job then check out their MySpace ( to listen to their Camille O’Sullivan/Nico-esque noise. Secondly, awkward alt rock noise assassins (author’s note-we can’t prove that they’re actually assassins) Delirium Tremens also need a bassist after some in-band reshuffling, so have a listen to and see if you fit the part. Lastly, stoner rock behemoths Howlin’ Widow also desperately need some low end throbbing and if early Sabbath, Kyuss and Goatsnake are your bag (and why wouldn’t it be?) then check out their MySpace on Hell, even if you can’t play bass, check out Howlin’ Widow any way as they kick more ass than a football match between Newry and Larne.

Finally, as most of you already know-a huge earthquake decimated Haiti recently. Keen to do their bit, the NI music scene have banned together for a gig on January 31 at the Spring and Airbrake, the Limelight and Katy Daly’s. Organized by Ron from the Black Bear Saloon, Anto from Tin Pot Operation and John from Bruised Fruit, it features 50bands including the Answer and General Fiasco and while it’s already no doubt been mentioned in the Big List it’s worth stating again that you need to be at this show. For more information and for up to the minute news, click on

See y’all next month folks. Up the Irons.



PS-This month’s photo was taken backstage at Download 07 after Valient Thorr’s set-hence the reason why I look fuckin’ mentals.