News From The North Week 68

4 12 2010

Here’s a reprint of my NI news column that runs every fortnight in Hot Press and as I led the piece with news about Gacy Threads I’ve also included their video for the immense ‘Sieving Secrets’ below. The clip was made by Red Cap Productions and looks fucking ace.

News

Words: Edwin McFee

Avid readers of this very column will already be aware of this writer’s love for the mighty Gacys Threads and with that in mind it gives me great pleasure to let you all know that the riff juggernauts are about to embark on a tour of Ireland and (quite possibly) beyond in the near future. Having just released their ace ‘Wolf Bridge’ EP (which is available via www.gacythreads.com alongside a plethora of lovely T-shirts designed by Chris from White Dragon tattoo studio) the boys bring the noise to the likes of Limerick, Derry, Dublin and everywhere in-between from this Dec and the exact dates on where they’re performing are up on their website as we speak.

Possibly the north’s best party band Here Comes the Landed Gentry get the Crimbo vibe started early with the news of a Yuletide show in Gweedore, Derry this Dec 23 (or Christmas Eve Eve as Zig and Zag used to call it). The so-called “Annual Xmas Explosion” is sure to be a fun night and the venue of choice is the handily named Gweedore Bar. The band are planning to make copies of their debut album available on the evening too, so if you’re in the area make sure you check them out as they’re one of the best live acts in the country bar none.

Those lovely (and charitable) people at Common Grounds café in Belfast are once again on the lookout for acoustic performers for their Friday night gigs. At the moment there are a couple of dates free this month and next, so if you fancy letting your inner singer/songwriter free for the evening email the organisers at rentaghost31@yahoo.co.uk for more details. As all proceeds go to charity you won’t be paid, but we’ve been assured that you’ll get fed and hey, a free meal is the best kinda meal, right?

Sludged up heavy types Slomatics have just re-emerged from Start Together Studios in Belfast with five brand new tracks under their arms. If rumours are to be believed the new songs feature accordions, moogs and bicycle wheels so it should sound interesting if nothing else. Two of the cuts are ear-marked for an up-coming split cassette with Comply or Die and the other three are for a split 12”/CD with Liverpool band Conan and both will be released early next year via Head of Crom Records and Aurora Borealis. For more news of Slomatics check out their MySpace (www.myspace.com/slomatics) for future gig dates and a sneak preview of ‘Hold The Skull.’





News From The North Weeks 61 and 62

7 09 2010

News

Words: Edwin McFee

Belfast-based riff behemoths LaFaro continue to steamroll their way to the top of the NI band food chain this fortnight with the announcement that they’re set to play at this year’s Reading and Leeds festivals. The four-piece will appear at the BBC Introducing stage and perform at Leeds on August 28 and Reading the following day. Also playing on those days are Blink 182 and Weezer, but since both those bands disappeared up their own bum holes years ago you’ve no excuse not to check out Johnny Black and Co. In other LaFaro news, the boys have been chosen to support seminal post hardcore heroes Helmet on their first European tour in yonks. Taking place over the months of November and December, the boys play Belgium, Holland and more and we can’t think of a better support act for Page Hamilton’s crew.

Turning our attentions to festivals at home, the always entertaining Joe Echo (plus full band) are slated to appear at this year’s Electric Picnic. After wowing the crowds at Oxegen, Mr Echo is all set to repeat that success with a performance on September 3, which also just so happens to be the release date of his new single ‘Tilly’s Cowboy’ and mighty fine it is too.

 If the recent gig by Iron Maiden and upcoming Irish dates by Guns ‘N’ Roses have whetted your appetites for destruction (see what we did there?) then check out the brand spanking new rock night called Hanger 18 which launches in the Pavilion bar in Belfast on August 20. Promising a slightly heavier music policy (think Pantera rather than Poison) the night begins at 9.30pm and rumours of a reduced cover charge being offered for anyone turning up in a patch-laden denim and leather outfit aren’t confirmed at the time of going to press (we joke because we care). The organisers are also planning another rock night called Redeemer (which is sponsored by Scuzz TV and Metal Hammer magazine) in the same venue and that kicks off on August 28 too.

News

Words: Edwin McFee

Sludge loving post punks Comply or Die have re-entered the studio this fortnight to begin work on the follow up to their epic self-titled debut album. Early reports indicate the band are experimenting with longer song structures-albeit delivered in their own unique louder than everyone else fashion-and bassist Ian Pearce tells us that some of the new material is being ear-marked for an up-coming split cassette (remember them? No? Just me then…) with the Slomatics. Comply or Die are also gearing up to play a secret gig in a half finished bungalow which boasts an adjoining medieval graveyard in early September too. At the moment the trio are keeping the exact details to themselves, though we do know that it’s near Ballymoney and if you bribe their singer Michael with enough Icarus Line singles, then he’ll sing like a canary.

The mighty Trucker Diablo have just released their new record The Devil Rhythm and you’ll be pushed to hear a better classic rock album all year. Already a hit with their faithful followers, the album can be bought from the band directly at www.myspace.com/truckerdiablo. In other TD news, the boys have featured in a recent Facebook campaign to get them to support Thin Lizzy when they play in Belfast next February. Click on http://www.facebook.com/TruckerDiabloSupportPage if you’d like to see the riff monsters share the stage with Ricky Warwick and Co.

This September, the North Coast’s Under Stars & Gutters aim to beat those back to school blues by re-releasing their whole catalogue for free via American label Death To False Hope Records. While there are no official dates available at the time of going to press, keep checking www.myspace.com/deathtofalsehoperecords for punky goodness.

Speaking of new releases, the Beat Poets have penciled in October 4 for the launch date of their new single ‘Gravity.’ While we haven’t heard the recorded version of the tune yet, we’re sure it’ll repeat the success of their mainstream breakthrough track ‘One By One.’ The Poets’ VM Records labelmates Silhouette are also celebrating the news that their superb single ‘Volume Destroyed’ has just been added to Cool FM’s daytime radio playlist. Shauna Tohill and Co. will be joining the likes of Lady Gaga, Kings of Leon and the Killers on the airwaves and we can’t think of a better act to show the mainstream pop/rock world just how it’s done. For more news on Silhouette and the Beat Poets check out VM Records’ website at www.myspace.com/vexedmusicrecords.





News From The North Week 43

5 11 2009

This fortnight’s Hot Press is on the stands now (more details here http://www.hotpress.com/2893481.html) so here’s a reprint of the previous issue’s NI bands column!

News

Words: Edwin McFee

This fortnight this writer has been playing the new album from NI’s finest punk rock band the Lobotomies in almost constant rotation. Entitled Big Bang Hangover it features 17tracks in around 30minutes and it’s pretty much one of my favourite records of the year. Why am I telling you this, you ask? Well the four-piece launch their album on October 23 with a gig in the Pavilion, Belfast and you should all be there as it’s only £5 in. There are plenty of highlights on the release, but the smashmouth sounds of ‘Freedom,’ and the savage ‘Bloodsports With Lapdogs’ get our recommendation and if you can’t get to the gig don’t fret, as Big Bang Hangover is released vie EHC Records. Visit www.myspace.com/thelobotomies for more details.

Congratulations to the Panama Kings who not only ruled the school at their first ever Mandela Hall headline gig a few weeks ago, but they’ve also bagged the hugely coveted support slot on Ash’s up-coming UK and Irish tour. The boys will hit the road with the band from mars (see what we did there? No? Alright, please yourselves…) throughout the months of October and November and these include dates at the Button Factory, Dublin on Nov 25 and the Spring and Airbrake, Belfast on Nov 26 so check Ticketmaster and the usual suspects for ticket details.

Sludge worshipping heavy hitters Slomatics have released their latest slab of wax this fortnight and it’s a split CD with the mighty Selaah. The band contribute three songs to the record (while Selaah recorded a 17minute long improve piece. Jazzy!) and it’s strictly limited to 200copies, so get ‘em while you can. At £4 it’d be rude not to. More details are available at the link http://slomatics.bigcartel.com/.

Delirium Tremens (who are currently beavering away in the studio like, er…beavers) have posted up two demos for their forth-coming debut release on their MySpace page (www.myspace.com/deliriumtremensrock). ‘Shuffle Off This Mortal Coil’ and ‘Requiem’ are currently available for streaming and even in this rough format, it’s pretty clear that the record will be nothing short of monstrous once it sees the light of day in the New Year. The boys are also in the process of booking a tour south of the border and although some shows are to be confirmed, the trek runs from Nov 27-Dev 7. As if that wasn’t enough, they also support American post rock types Junius in Belfast on Nov 27 and once we have the final dates, Hot Press will of course keep you up to date.