Posts Tagged ‘ mcd ’

Old Crow Bring Americana To Vicar Street


There may have been a hurricane blowing out west, but in Dublin it was all about Tennessee Tornadoes. Apart from the apt weather based humour, I think I’ve finally settled on the best description I can give to the lunatics of Old Crow Medicine Show. Back in Dublin for the second time in as many years, in an age where certain other country stars find it hard to get over here at all, they showed every inch of their grass roots class to put on one of the best live shows you’re ever likely to see.

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GANGS Set To Launch Debut EP With Academy Gig

GANGS - Back To School EP cover art

Back To School is the stunning debut EP by GANGS. It will be released through Reekus Records on Friday 26th September.

Back To School was produced by Brian Foley, bassist with legendary Dublin band The Blades.

Speaking about the collaboration GANGS’ frontman Jordan Curtis said, “He’s a hero of ours so we’re really excited about working with him. The Blades played a big part in our development as a band and we really look up to them.” Continue reading

Paul Howard Reveals Ross O’Carroll Kelly Legacy To Live On


“The year is 2022. Ireland is in the midst of an unexpected economic boom. The country’s debts have been repaid in full, the people are once again selling houses to each other for five times what they’re worth and Bertie Ahern is set to become Taoiseach again at the age of 71. Ross O’Carroll-Kelly is entering his middle years without a care in the world. He’s got a son who’s a professional footballer, a career-minded wife who’s about to land the job of her dreams – and, like good Cognac, his looks just keep improving with age. For Ireland’s most eligible married man, life is good. Until his teenage daughter arrives home from Wesley one night with the captain of the Blackrock College rugby team – and Ross is forced to face up to the lesson that you must reap what you have sown”. Continue reading

Mumford & Sons Close Out The Park In Style


The Phoenix Park Summer Fest came to a close yesterday and thankfully was a far more resounding success than last year. It was fitting so that we should be sent on the road by the very Gentlemen Of The Road, Mumford & Sons. The first dramatic difference between the two days of the weekend gigs was how much Sunday was a Mumford event. Entering the venue, the crowd was presented with all of the hoarding and props associated with their standalone shows, to the point that even Heineken lost their branding to a simple “Beer” branding in the vintage Mumford style.
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Florence & Snow Patrol Close Out Phoenix Park

It was a mixed weekend in Phoenix Park for this mini festival MCD threw together. Mixed in publicity, music and reception. But all in all it was three days of fantastic music for every shape and size, and though it was marred by the mindless and senseless acts of a minority, for those like myself who actually had some interest in the music it was a great weekend.

The final day of the Park Fest was a double headliner of Florence + The Machine and Snow Patrol, plus Temper Trap and a late addition in Bressie. First off the mark I have to say I was pleasantly surprised at how good a show Temper Trap could put on. They have a great energy on stage coupled with good upbeat tracks and it was a pity that they couldn’t grab the attention of more of the crowd. Their big hit of course, Sweet Disposition, closed their set and injected a good dose of spirit into the muddied and wet crowd.

Ah yes, the mud. Before elaborating any further on the main acts, the condition of the park has to be addressed unfortunately. MCD have many calling for their heads after what seems to have been a total lack of foresight when organising these gigs. Most  of these calls are in relation to the acts of violence that occurred on the Saturday, but the sheer conditions people were forced to inhabit for 6+ hours were absolutely third world. There was speculation after the destruction from the Swedish House Mafia gig that the ground would be lined more adequately but unfortunately all that remained was the bare sparce dressing of the ground with plastic boarding which had sunk by about the midway point. The rest of the uncovered areas were horrendous and based on the odour, none too hygienic. Mud baths these were not. Nobody expects and outdoor gig to be clean and polished, least of all me, but this was worse than even  any Oxygen festival I have attended where it would rain non stop for days at a time. There was simply no effort made by the organisers and no amount of money received by the OPW could be worth the damage the Park has now suffered.

On then to the star turn of the night that was Florence + The Machine. Florence Welch is musical Marmite to many, a lot of people turning away at her outgoing, loving outbursts for her fans when performing live and her slightly wacky persona. Personally, I’ve never had much opinion either way but I have to say that on the day that was in it, given the madness that had come before, it did feel good to be back in that same spot hearing messages of all kinds of lollipops and happiness come from the stage. It’s a weird one, I’m fully confident that I may have found her stage play annoying under different circumstances but on the day, it was great and set a great mood in the crowd. Highlights of her set were the massive reaction from the crowd to the single note drone intro of “Shake It Off” and the closer “No Light, No Light” bringing a massive close to the set, but the Ceremonials-heavy setlist didn’t leave room for her cover of “You’ve Got The Love” which was a personal loss for myself as I had hoped to hear it. No biggie though, still a fantastic performer and a great first half to the show.

Then came an act that, to be honest, I had much higher expectations of. I had not seen Snow Patrol since 2004 at Oxegen and the following summer supporting U2. At that point they were still breaking through and they played with a genuine sincerity at showing how much they appreciated where they were. What worried me was whether or not they still had that too them. While its true though that Gary Lightbody has maybe got a little Bono-esque in his stage persona and the band’s reliability on power ballads wears a little thin, they still do commit themselves to putting on a great live show. The opener of “Eyes Open” was perfectly chosen, being an ideal “we mean business” type of track. Moving on then they treated us to a fantastic, as always, rendition of “Run” and a beautifully subtle version of “Set The Fire To The Third Bar” featuring Maria Doyle Kennedy, a big surprise given how many like myself would have simply assumed Florence Welch was the obvious choice for the track. The highlight of the night though, and contender for highlight of the weekend, was the anthemic “Chasing Cars”. It was a no brainer assumption this would bring the house down, but I could have never imagined how powerful this track becomes live. With just a few seconds of the guitar intro, the entire crowd launched into the verse and Lightbody was no longer needed. It wasn’t until the final chorus that I can remember actually hearing him sing it, and even that was just barely above the crowd. It was a fantastic moment and capped of the weekend fantastically, so much so that the remainder of their set fell slightly flat if I’m being honest. They couldn’t do better than themselves, not a bad complaint I suppose.

Swedish House Mafia Rock Phoenix Park

There was much to talk about after Swedish House Mafia’s gig in Phoenix Park last night, not least of all the persistent rumours of deaths from overdose and the confirmation of nine stabbings. Whilst these are grave concerns and everyone is obviously anxiously awaiting the outcome of the victims and the person in question responsible for the acts, I would rather if I could talk only about the performances for the majority of this review.

Arriving in time to see Snoop Dogg take the stage, the first thing I couldn’t help but notice was how much better the sound was in the park compared to previous gigs I had experienced there. Phoenix Park is not by any means an ideal venue for gigs but it has to be said they’ve got it right from the setup perspective. Snoop took the stage and I have to say, he didn’t mess around. A lot of the faffing about onstage and theatrics that can come with a Snoop set, and indeed came in bucket loads at his Oxygen set in ’06, were missing and he plowed through the hits quite efficiently. Biggest cheer of his time on stage had to have been his David Guetta collaboration “Sweat” which was fantastically received.

Next up was the set many were most eager to see, that of a certain Tinie Tempah. Tempah has slowly but surely been turning himself into the king of modern rap and pop this side of the Atlantic. This was fully evident in how he controlled the crowd for his set, injecting massive energy as he blasted out his hits, “Written In The Stars” as expected being one of the high points and he had the crowd in great form. One odd inclusion, given the presence of SHM on the bill, was Tempah deciding to do his collaboration with them “Miama 2 Ibaza” as part of his own setlist, when saving it for the main slot would have seemed more logical. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me but I thought it gave the impression that there wasn’t much relation between the acts on the bill, with Tinie seemingly staying separate from SHM given that they didn’t link up to feature this collaboration.

As the sun set it was then time for the headliners to take the stage for their last ever Irish show. Swedish House Mafia have had a good run of the last four years they’ve spent collaborating. It has to be said though that as farewell gigs go, this one was slightly odd given that they were barely together to begin with and it is highly unlikely that at least two of them won’t cross paths again in the future. But that aside, they certainly played as though it was their last show. There was one or two hit and miss tracks thrown in but for the most part they knew just what buttons to press, no pun intended, to get the crowd jumping. When they launched into Faithless track “Insomnia”, the light show and pyrotechnics coupled with the enthusiasm from the crowd really summed up the quality of entertainment on display for the night. Although Tinie Tempah arguably outshone them, Swedish capped of a great night of music that unfortunately doesn’t look likely to be seen here for a while to come.

And so we should discuss briefly the incidents that brewed from last night’s gig. We now have confirmation of nine stabbings and it seems there was indeed one death by overdose, with another two rumored. Ireland has a long standing problem with concerts, particularly those outdoors in the summer, where the main cause of the problem is children for want of a better word. 16 – 20 year olds who are experimenting with drugs, possibly even drinking for the first time, do not know their own limits and overdo things to the extreme. Every country is quite skilled at it, but we seem to excel at it. It looks now as though the stabbings were undertaken by one individual and the question on everybody’s lips is why would someone even want to do it? The question on mine is; how did MCD organise such poor security? When entering the gig I was barely frisked, so much so that I remained standing thinking a more thorough search was coming, only to find that lightly brushing my arms constitutes a search for weapons and narcotics these days. Even if these stabbings were taken out with a device acquired in the venue itself, where was the security? Having been at Oxygen last year and seen how well an event can be organised when promoters try hard enough, I was shocked at the lack of Garda and security presence inside the venue. Sign of the times? A sold out 45,000 crowd would beg to differ.