Monday, December 22, 2008
Hard to describe how impressed I was with the new O2 (still feels weird saying that), but considering they spent €80 million on it, plus the fact that it was a sh*thole to begin with, makes it less suprising that it is now a state of the art, all purpose music venue, unparalleled in this country.
Kings of Leon were good - very good even - and played for two hours, but like many others, I spent most of the first hour marvelling at the size of the room. 14,000 people I might add, and still very comfortable.
French electro-rock band M83 got things underway but seemed a little lost in the size of the venue. Saw them in Andrew's Lane recently enough and was rather more impressed.
KOL appeared on stage to thunderous roars around 9.15pm, and to the rather less thunderous and more atmospheric strains of Closer, following quickly with Crawl and My Party, the latter a particular highlight. The rather more up-tempo Molly Chambers followed and all thoughts of anyone sitting down was long forgotten.
That is the interesting thing with a seated gig, particularly one of KOL's ilk - you simply don't want to use your seat. Some interesting happenings took place beside the railing where the seats tapered to the floor, as the entire row were told to sit down for the first few songs. An almighty row broke out between one couple and the security guards when they refused to sit down, all of which took place in front of Hot Press editor Niall Stokes, who tried peering around the arguement, much to our amusement! The couple got evicted, and lo and behold another couple took their place, and proceeded to stand for the rest of the gig. Yes, I am as confused as you.
Anyway, the rest of the gig was a demonstration as to why this band are the biggest in the world today, mixing as they were old classics (Milk, 18, Four Kicks) and newer - admittedly more mainstream but still - potential classics (Use Somebody, Cold Desert, Knocked Up) finishing with a strong four track encore.
The highlight? The crystal clear sound. Superb. Roll on Dylan etc in the new year. Oh, and U2.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Friday, December 12, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
In a major coup for the Dock Road venue, the band are to play just two dates in Ireland, one in Limerick, followed by one in the Olympia in Dublin the following Sunday night.
We understand that the close links between Kasabian and FF, and the fact that Dolan's have hosted the likes of Roisin Murphy and the Charlatans in recent times, were all factors in helping the venue secure what is - regardless of your preference for the band or not - undisputedly a massive gig for Limerick.
FF are to release their third studio album at the end of January, Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, the lead single from which - Ulysses - will be released on January 16.
You know the rest - they released their eponymous debut in 2004, which scooped them the Mercury Music Prize, and was widely lauded as one of the releases of the year. 2005's follow-up was not as enthusiastically received and lacked a little of the spark of the original, but still had its moments.
Tickets for the gig are priced at €35 including booking fee and are available from Dolans Pub and Ticketmaster outlets from 9.30am this Friday morning (at least that is what it says on the press release, probably should be 9am). I would imagine that you would want to move fairly fast to secure a ticket, and purchases are limited to four per person.
First ageing rockers Elton John and Rod Stewart, now indie-darlings Franz Ferdinand, who knows what might be next?
For more news, stay here and with the Limerick Leader.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Size2ShoesThe Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - on Cruises Street
The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - in Trinity Rooms
Two (or three?) excellent gigs in the city on one night, beginning with the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble playing an impromptu set on a deserted Cruises St early on Sunday evening. Chicago's finest really know how warm up a crowd and impressed with a superb set in the Clubhouse @ Trinity Rooms later in the evening. They have just signed a record deal with Damon Albarn's manager and will hopefully be back for a courtyard show next year (fingers crossed).
In between we caught sets from Richie McCoy, David Hope and Size2Shoes (all local artists) at the Belltable Sessions in the Red Cross Hall, the last montly gig this year. Unfortunately Cork band Armoured Bear cancelled due to "unforeseen circumstances". Windings finished the night off, and we await the return of this rather delightful night early in the New Year.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Super gig taking place tomorrow night, last of this year's Belltable Sessions.
Folk musician David Hope will get proceedings underway, followed by the harmonious O'Suilleabhain brothers in their Size2Shoes guise, who have an album ready for release. Steve Ryan of Giveamanakick fame performs as Windings after an excellent gig at the Body and Soul Arena of Electric Picnic, while Cork band Armoured Bear - responsible for one of the Irish albums of the year with Honeycomb Moons - headline the night.
All acts perform live, no mics, no speakers, just performance and music in the versatile Red Cross Hall. Check it out.