Monday, 28 February 2011


It really doesn't take much to get me excited about festival line-ups but I'm loving what the Cork X Southwest people have put together including

Favourite Sons!

Here's the line-up:


I'll be there!

Listen to some of the artists here:

Sweet Upon The Vine by FavouriteSons

In a Million - Nina Hynes by UpStart

Tickets €95 including booking fee from

Limited ‘early bird’ tickets at €79 including booking fee on sale Tuesday March 1st at 9am from

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Ross Breen

Ross Breen and the Kanootzens launch the debut album When I Met The Devil in Crawdaddy, Dublin on Friday 18th March.

This line-up will be larger than ever before: For the first time in history band stalwarts Ross Breen, Ciaran Oman and Wolfy will be joined onstage by members of various other brilliant bands including Funzo, Scarecrow Disco and the horn section from funksters The Candidates. Copied from the album launch Facebook Event!

Download the 'Life Support' EP for free here:

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Daithi O'Dronai

Daithi O'Dronai is launching his seven track EP tonight in The Workmans Club in Dublin where it is a completely free gig!

Here's the last track from that EP called The Dog!

Buy The EP here:

Friday, 25 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - The Cujo Family

There are some amazing gigs on in Dublin this Saturday night! However which of them come with a JD & Coke 4 a fiver deal!

This song is dedicated to the Fianna Faillers who have to sign on now!

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Album Review: Padraig McCauley and the P Affection – Self-Titled

The debut album from Padraig McCauley and the P Affection is a superb collection of pop songs designed to lift your spirits.

[Originally appeared on the collaborative blog 4fortfour here:]

The self-titled debut album from Padraig McCauley & The P Affection is a breath of fresh nostalgia. The ten tracks are a homage to the best of 1980's pop. I'm not talking Bananarama pop but the good stuff like Lloyd Cole, Aztec Camera and Prefab Sprout. This album though is not a weak imitation of the best music from the 80's but it's a bunch of well written catchy pop gems which shamelessly displays it's influences on it's sleeve.

The album kicks off with the best pop song written in about 25 years entitled 'Worries of the World'. The brass section and guitar rift of 'Trouble in Paradise' brings to mind Madness. 'The Flood' is a well written love song with colourful lyrics. The catchiest chorus belongs to the track 'I'm Fucking Amazing' and reminds me of the pop music Irish band Blink used to make in the early 90s. The album closer 'Beggars & Cannibals' even has steel drums in it in case you missed all the 80's references during the previous nine tracks!

I really enjoy the simplicity of Padraig McCauley & The P Affection. It's a fun album from a quality vocalist and songwriter. The music is just pure pop from start to finish. With all the gloom in the country someone should tell the radio stations to play some of this album for high value entertainment!

Padraig McCauley and the P Affection – Self-Titled [10 out of 12]

Check out the best tracks here:

Worries Of The World by thepaffection

The Flood by thepaffection

Beggars & Cannibals by thepaffection

Amhrán Gach Lá - We Cut Corners

The next three Amhran Gach La posts will be talking about this Saturday night. It looks like there won't be much political drama so I'll be at this gig in The Grand Social to find out if all the buzz about We Cut Corners is justified!

Link: Communion on Facebook

We Cut Corners - Go Easy by The Certain Three

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Bipolar Empire

Bipolar Empire are gaining momentum at the moment after their Late Late show appearance and having their last single Tempomanic used in a television advertisement in Ireland.

Here's a video for their lastest single 'Feel That You Own It' released on April 1st featuring World Champion boxer Katie Taylor.

Monday, 21 February 2011

EP Review - Gareth Brannigan - Say It Anyway

Say It Anyway is Gareth Brannigan’s second independent release, and strengthens and extends the quality of his earlier EP entitled Walk with Me, recorded in 2008.

We all know there's a massive amount of music out there and while I've mentioned last week that there might be a resurgence for singer-songwriters musicians like Gareth Brannigan are finding exposure very difficult. I'm only now getting round to reviewing his new EP which was released at the end of last year. 'Say it Anyway' along with his earlier EP proves that there is an excellent debut album is this artist.

The EP is brimming with charm which makes a rather simply formula into a very pleasant listening experience. Gareth's vocals are really nice, his lyrics are thoughtful and the music is just right for the feel of the tracks. The title track is the most accomplished track on the EP but my favourite track is the delicate 'Anam Cara'. It's music that's not going to push any boundaries of the genre but impresses due to the charm of the tracks.

Gareth Brannigan - Say It Anyway [9 out of 12]

Amhrán Gach Lá - Marc O'Reilly

Performing at The Glor Sessions tonight is Marc O'Reilly who has just released a decent album 'My Friend Marx' through the Waterford based record company 'Salt and Shake Records'

05 La Question by Salt and Shake Records

Listen to the album in full here:

Billed as the greatest Glor Sessions ever the full line-up for tonight includes:

Colm Keegan:

Clement La-Touche from London:


Harry Bird & The Rubber Wellies:

Marc O'Reilly:

David Hope:

Baum: from the Swiss land

Here's a video of Baum live on New Years Eve a few weeks back:

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - The Dirty 9s cover Bruce Springsteen

I'm on Fire (Bruce Springsteen cover) by TheDirty9s

I heard this cover live on Friday night when The Dirty 9s played Boyles of Slane and it was immense. The Dirty 9s are close to being the best band in Ireland in my humble opinion! See them on Thursday in The Grand Social.

Canadian Music Week’s showcase in Toronto will see the following travel to Canada to perform:

Autumn Owls
Butterfly Explosion
Funeral Suits
James Vincent McMorrow
Kill Krinkle Club
Kormac’s Big Band
Lost Chord
Miracle Bell
Preacher’s Son
Sacred Animals
The Dirty 9s

Might have to put together a mixtape coming up to the festival!

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Lisa O'Neill

I just seen the amazing news that Cavan's wonderful songwriter Lisa O'Neill is David Gray's support for his North American tour beginning in a few days. How amazing is this?

I don't want to score any points but when Lisa's debut album was released in 2009 this blog championed it and it was listed as the second best album of that year!

Photo by Ian Pearce:

Here's a track from that album called 'Work to the Bone'.

Lisa O'Neill - Work To The Bone by morganclark

Feb 21 Wag TheatreBoston, Boston, MA
Feb 22 Music Centre at StrathmoreBethesda, MD
Feb 23 Beacon TheatreNew York, NY , US
Feb 25 Massey HallToronto, ON , CA
Feb 26 Detroit Opera HouseDetroit, MI , US
Feb 27 Chicago TheatreChicago, IL, US
Feb 28 State TheatreMinneapolis, MN , US
Mar 3 Marion Oliver McCaw HallSeattle, WA , us
Mar 4 The Centre in Vancouver for the Performing ArtsVancouver, Brithish C, CANADA
Mar 5 Performing Arts CentreSpokan, WA
Mar 7 Davies Symphony HallSan Francisco, CA , US
Mar 8 Royce Hall at UCLALos Angeles, California, US
Mar 9 Speckels TheatreSan Diego, CA

Friday, 18 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Bill Coleman covers Kanye West

The best song I've discovered this week is this Kanye West cover by Bill Coleman called Runaway. I adore Bill's version which went onto Soundcloud this Wednesday.

Cover - Runaway (Kanye West) by bcoleman

Bill has been added as support for Jamie Lawson's Irish tour beginning next month:

2nd March - Whelans - Dublin [Sold Out]
3rd March - Set Theatre - Kilkenny
4th March - Forum Lounge - Waterford
5th March - Roisin Dubh, Galway
8th March - The Spirit Store, Dundalk
10th March - Upstairs at Dolans, Limerick
11th March - Cyprus Avenue, Cork
12th March- The Thatch, Co Offaly
13th March - INEC Acoustic Club, Killarney
16th March - Wexford Arts Centre, Wexford

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Wayne Brennan

If you are free tonight in Dublin you could do worst than going to see Wayne Brennan in the wonderful surroundings of The Sugar Club. Tickets are €10.

Check out the guitar style of Wayne here with a video of his song Pancake Tuesday.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - The Gorgeous Colours

The Gorgeous Colours are busy getting a few really quality gigs together. Friday night they perform live in Crawdaddy!

Then on April 9th they play The Button Factory with Ham Sandwich and Thousandaires while on April 15th they support O Emperor with Sacred Animals in The Academy.

To bring even better news you can now download their excellent self-titled debut album from here: which includes this song of beauty!

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Damien Dempsey

With Valentine's Day over we turn our attention to St. Patrick's Day next month where Damien Dempsey will be performing an acoustic show in The Ashbourne House Hotel for the reasonable sum of €22.50.

It's most certainly an opportunity to 'Sing All Your Cares Away'

I also noticed that Damien is to star in an Irish movie called 'Between The Canals'. If you check out the trailer you'll notice it isn't a light-hearted comedy!

Monday, 14 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Dr. Millar [Anti - Love Special]

I've never been a mad romantic and it bothers me that today is proudly sponsored by the Hallmark executives! However it gives me an opportunity to post my favourite Anti-Love song by Dr. Millar.

"You're Not Paranoid" is a wonderful song for anyone not feeling the love! It's comforting to think there might be paranoid people out there who should be single!


Friday, 11 February 2011

Live Review: Ryan Sheridan - Boyles 10th Feb

Ryan Sheridan performed in Boyles, last night as part of his countrywide single tour promoting the radio hit 'Jigsaw'. The gig confirms that Ryan is a fantastic performer with superb vocals.

Support for the gig was one half of Navan's hotly tipped rock band Red Queen Contest. Cormac and Paul takes turns with lead vocals and harmonise on many of the tracks. Their stripped down acoustic set really showcased their songwriting talents and hints at a superb debut album in the making.

There was a real air of optimism amongst the packed crowd in Boyles before Ryan Sheridan and percussionist Arthur Graczyk took to the stage. While it's taken years for Ryan's talents to be discovered the recent radio play for the single Jigsaw has resulted in Ryan gaining new fans at a rate not seen too often seen these days.

A confident Ryan belted out unheard of material that got due attention from the crowd because of the animated introductions. It wasn't long until he declared to the crowd that he is sick of playing 'Jigsaw' and it won't be played! Of course he lied and played the hit mid setlist and then again as the encore. [A few years ago when I seen Little Palace in Navan I was amused when the band played their radio hit first and last with a totally different crowd reaction ..... probably due to alcohol consumption!] There were also two covers played with 'Baby Please Don't Go' early in the set and a superb version of Bronski Beat's 'Smalltown Boy'.

Ryan announced that the album is ready for release in May. The songs played tonight suggest that lyrically there will be some interesting tracks on the album to get stuck into. I'm not too sure if there is another 'hit' single like 'Jigsaw'. It won't be long until we find out!

What I learned from the gig is that Ryan Sheridan is on the path to being a recognisable star in Ireland. He is a confident performer brimming with charm and a bunch of high energy acoustic tracks!

The Setlist:

Stand Up Tall
Take It All Back
The Game
Baby Please Don't Go [Cover]
All And More
High Roller
The Day U Live 4Ever
Nutbush City Limits
Smalltown Boy [Bronski Beat Cover]
The Dreamer

Feb 11th: The Garage, Monaghan
Feb 12th: Roisin Dubh, Galwaye
Feb 17th: The Thatch, Tullamore
Feb 18th: The Venue, Waterford
Feb 19th: Cyprus Avenue, Cork
Feb 24th: Dolan's Limerick
Feb 25th: The Queens, Ennise
Feb 26th: The Hideout, Warrenpoint
Mar 3rd: McHugh's, Belfast
Mar 5th: Spirit Store, Dundalk
Mar 17th: TF Royal, Castlebar
Mar 18th: The Stables, Mullingar
Mar 19th: Gonzo Theatre, Cavan
Mar 24th: O'Keefe's, Clonmel
Mar 25th: INEC, Tralee
April 7th: Whelan's, Dublin

Ryan is also in line to perform at this year's Inspirations gig at The Olympia with Glen Hansard, The Stunning, Delorentos, O Emperor , Dirty Epics and more.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Amhrán Gach Lá - Youth Mass

Youth Mass have a single party planned for Crawdaddy on March 4th with support from Zombie Cops.

This is another excuse for me to share this fine track from the band!

False Starts - Youth Mass by Clockwork Apple

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Album Review: Dave Morrissey - Bring out the Light

Bring out the Light is the debut from the experienced singer songwriter Dave Morrissey. It's a pop album full of well composed songs with some nice melodies and hooks!

Dave Morrissey released 'Bring out the Light' at the end of last year and he's been busy promoting the album with gigs all over the country. Dave's an excellent singer and writes a decent uplifting tune. The album contains ten very uplifting and positive tracks with the standout track being this track 'Happy Day'.

Other quality tunes includes the catchy opener 'Mother Nature Says', the Spanish guitar filled 'Leaving' and the Beatles-esque closer 'Magic Night'. 'Bring out the Light' is an inoffensive album of catchy radio friendly tunes.

This brings me to the problem I have with the album. It doesn't offer anything different to the singer-songwriter genre. At a time when artists like Villagers include layers of hooks and strings into their songs or when James Vincent McMorrow strips the songs back to amazing effect; a straight forward inoffensive album isn't going to make the grade.

There are some really good tunes on this album and I'd highly recommend you go to see Dave Morrissey live around the country. Dave is supporting Aslan in The Olympia on March 16th.

Dave Morrissey - Bring out the Light [7 out of 12]

Buy The Album

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Album Review: Owensie - Aliens [4fortyfour repost]

This reviewed appeared last weekend on the 4fortyfour blog!

Owensie’s album Aliens is blissful to listen to but difficult to describe and confirms the trueness of Costello’s comment on writing about music is like “… dancing about architecture.” The album is all about texture, atmosphere and charm. It’s a folk album of great depth where you can easily become submerged within the intricate finger picking of the guitar or the subtle layers of strings which accompany the tracks. However while admiring the beauty of the album I’m conscious that the vocals feel more like an instrument on the album rather than the focus point of the tracks. The result of this is that Aliens does not grab my full attention and leaves me feeling that something is missing!

All of the songs from Owensie’s self-titled debut EP are included here with the wonderful instrumental ‘Ronda’ nestled mid album. Of the four new tracks I adore ‘Lonely Wood’ which reminds me of Pink Moon era Nick Drake with that haunting cello behind the quality guitar playing. ‘Subtle Connections’ is for me the best track on the album due to the vocal melodies blending with the strings towards the end of the track. ‘Dark Place’ is a song where the lyrics are unrecognisable but the vocals provide a layer of instrumentation and charm. The piano led ‘Cat and Mouse’ is another strong song.

Have a listen to the track 'Lonely Wood'

Lonely Wood by OOAL

Aliens is a fine album with charm and atmosphere in abundance. I would have enjoyed it more if Owensie’s quality vocals were not blended into the musical backdrop as much as they were. It is definitely an album worth checking out if you’re looking for a chilled out folk album with superb musicianship!

Owensie - Aliens [9 out of 12]

Owensie: Dark Place by OOAL

Amhrán Gach Lá - Jenny Lindfors

It was a welcome surprise when I seen that Jenny Lindfors is to support Oliver Cole in The Grand Social on March 12th. It's been ages since Jenny has performed a gig in Ireland.

Here's a video of Jenny performing Timewarp / On The Road Again in October 2009.

I was later delighted to see that Jenny is the support act for some of Rumer's UK tour:

Tuesday 29th March 2011:
Sage, Gateshead (opening for Rumer)

Wednesday 30th March 2011:
Grand Opera House, York (opening for Rumer)

Friday 1st April 2011:
Queens Hall, Edinburgh (opening for Rumer)

Saturday 2nd April 2011:
Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool (opening for Rumer)

Sunday 3rd April 2011:
Bridgewater Hall, Manchester (opening for Rumer)

Here's the reason why Rumer is getting recognition:

Slow by Rumer

Monday, 7 February 2011

List: Most Anticipated Irish Albums of 2011

Ronan from Swear I'm Not Paul published a new list of 10 anticipated 2011 album releases from Irish artists. Here's the 10 Ronan albums chose:

Bell X1
The Brilliant Things
The Cast of Cheers
Lisa Hannigan
The Holy Roman Army
The Plea
The Riot Tapes

Read all about these albums here:

Here's my list of 10 different albums which I'm looking forward to hearing this year.

Autumn Long - Debut Album

AUTUMN LONG is Pádraig Digan and a line up consisting of Leanne Doyle (Violin), Ruairí De Barra (Guitars), Michael Murphy (BASS), Joe Digan (Drums) and Norah O'Leary (Cello). I know Padraig has written wonderful tunes over the last number of years and he now has the right band to turn the songs into a full album ready for release.

The Frames - Album Number 6

There has to be a new Frames album? Maybe it'll include this song which I heard a few weeks back?

Henrietta Game - Debut Album

Henrietta Game get better live with every time I see the band. Their debut album due for release this Summer will be one of the highlights of the year.

Berlin - Henrietta Game by Clockwork Apple

I Am Not Lefthanded - Debut Album

I've been waiting for three years to get to hear the debut album of I Am Not Lefthanded. Not only will you be able to hear I Am Not Lefthanded's debut album this year but you can actually see and hear them recording it through web streaming:

Boats (Swept Away) by I Am Not Lefthanded

Jukebox Gypsy - Album # 2

Formed in 2007, Jukebox Gypsy started as a three-piece from Liverpool. Having toured extensively through Britain and Ireland, they now consist of five members and have released a critically acclaimed debut album with Irish distribution and management. The bassist is Been Dolan who released the outstanding album 'Transcend Mortality' as Resurrection Fern.

Here's a demo from the second Jukebox Gypsy album which is planned for release in April or May.

Birth Of You by Ben Blance

Junah - Debut Album

Junah are a band I've seen many times before and they have a whole list of great tracks. I think their debut album released this Summer will be bursting with wonderful folk rock songs. I can't wait for this album!

Norabelle - Debut Album

Gorgeous lyrics, gorgeous harmonies, gorgeous songs, gorgeous piano ..... in fact Norabelle's immanent debut should be called Gorgeous!

Gregarious Bird by norabellemusic

Rezlow - Debut Album

I can't wait to hear Terry Sutton on an album. It will happen in the next few months when Kerry based band Rezlow release their debut album. No doubt I'll be raving about them here!

Sleep Thieves - HeartWaves

While I'm not passionate about Electronic music I do love the indie Electronic sounds of Sleep Thieves. The debut album is entitled 'HeartWaves' and it'll be launched in The Workman's Club on April 7th.

01 Winter by wearesleepthieves

Storyfold - Rocket Science

I love how bands like Storyfold are documenting the recording process. The band have returned back from the UK where they've recorded their debut album provisionally called "Rocket Science".

Amhrán Gach Lá - Gary Moore

Rest in Peace Gary Moore! Here's hoping the sessions with Philo includes a rendition of this classic!

Gary Moore & Phil Lynott - Still In Love With You by Parisfirst-2

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Digital Socket Awards - The Aftermath

On Thursday, a bunch of passionate bloggers proved to The Music Business that you can celebrate the best in Irish Music in style without the need of sponsorship or Arts funding.

The nominated artists were firstly choosen by the public and then voted on by 26 bloggers to create the 'Shortlist' with a final vote by the same bloggers to create the list of winners:

Best Design (Website, Artwork, Posters)
Adebisi Shank - This is the second album of a band called Adebisi Shank

Best Independent Label
Richter Collective

Best Video
Ambience Affair - Devil In The Detail

Best Music Photography
Loreanna Rushe

Best Radio Show
Donal Dineen

Best Pop
Cathy Davey - Best Pop

Best Folk
Villagers - Becoming a Jackal

Best Rock and Alternative
Adebisi Shank

Best Electronic & Hip Hop
Solar Bears

Best Indie
The Cast of Cheers

Best EP
And So I Watch You From Afar – The Letters

Best Newcomer
The Cast of Cheers

Song of the Year
Villagers – The Meaning of the Ritual

Album of the Year
Adebisi Shank – This is the second album of a band called Adebisi Shank

There have already been offers of thanks to everyone involved but I want to share the articles and web inches which have already been written about the live event:

RTE Young People Dept:

Drop-d confirmed the value of The Digital Socket Awards by stating: "For the first time in years, Drop-d couldn’t have been prouder to be Irish."

MOG Music Network ... thanks to

BBC5Live: We got a few mentions from the 43rd Minute onwards!

Swear I'm Not Paul: Ronan wrote about his top 10 moments!

Golden Plec Review:

MEG Review:

Take The Candy:

The Lost Continent:

Thank you big time!

Some Happy Customers:

Sargent House:

Loreana Rushe:


Photos Galore: Thanks to the Music Photographers

The Live Bands: Thanks to the bands for their excellent performances!

Ham Sandwich



Photos by:

The Live Final was a charity event for Aware and there is a tidy sum of €1000 + going to the charity!

See ya for The Digital Socket Awards next year?

Finally .... in case you haven't seen it here's the Best Music Video of 2010:

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Cocophone Interview [as seen first on 4fortyfour]

Cocophone are one of the most talked about bands in Ireland at the moment and for good reason. Last Summer they beat over twenty bands in the first 'Becks on the Night' band competition in Boyles, Slane as well as having their debut EP 'Special offers' produced by Villagers’ band member Tommy McLaughlin at his Donegal-based studio Attica Audio. The band describe themselves as "... a two piece acoustic, folk-like ensemble comprising of Fin on guitars and vocals, and Freya on violin and vocals." Here's an interview I conducted with Fin!

I've seen Cocophone perform live on a number of occasions and I struggle to describe your sound. How do you explain the sound of Cocophone to others?

Having people struggle to easily describe your sound is artistically a pleasure for Freya and myself. The core aim of any self-respecting songwriter is to create something whole within one song but then deliver a world of subtle difference upon performance of several songs. As a two-piece, Cocophone has certain pillars upon which each song is constructed; A strong lyrical subject, male/female vocal harmonies and dashes of violin or synth as the guitar parts usually mature towards an ideological finish of the song’s theme. Currently, we are planning to bring together a parallel Cocophone ‘The Band’ aswell which we hope will give us a further musical dynamic with regards to the maturity and versatility of our sound. I suppose a tag such as ‘Experimental Folk’ could fit but then again Tony Clayton-Lea in The Irish Times said that that sounds more like a description of myself and Freya as people, ha.

How did you guys meet and what inspired you to form a band and to make music?

When Freya and myself were 17, we met through mutual friends. I actually stole a record from her house (Smashing Pumpkins, Siamese Dream) and when she demanded from a friend of mine that i return it, I called down to her house and seeing a violin in the kitchen, asked her if she would like to jam. She said yes and so, Cocophone (though not called it yet) was fundamentally born.
For me, my primary inspiration to play music is an interest in how words work in popular music. A song like 'Special Offers' is where you attempt to make the social disarray of door to door swamp marketing whole again , although these words are ironically enveloped by a selfishly catchy chorus. Freya has a similar interest but she is really focused on the texture of every movement in a song; moreso on an emotive feeling for how Cocophone should present a lyrical subject to the audience/listener. A song like 'Glory Shoes' is where Freya really makes that happen I think.

You touched on it there but what are the main themes in the lyrics of your songs?

A college paper journalist asked me that last week and through quickly combing through our songs in my head, I realised that fundamentally, we now write about loss and fond memories at one end and gain and hopeful/damned prospects at the other. I suppose myself and Freya live personally in the present and Cocophone Art is built on what’s happened to us and how we then might deal with it in the future. When I first began writing songs, I had a distaste for much singer-songwriting at the time based on the super-self (‘I don’t know what to do now that I don’t know how to deal with my feelings’ sort of principle). I therefore became obsessed with lyrical observation and third-person social commentary (i.e. Existentially seeing myself experience these observations). Having committed to accurately describing an experience, with my emotions very much removed, I have now come to be comfortable with now placing my ego in there while not hijacking the song with my ‘feelings’. As far as the new ‘Special Offers’ EP goes, the title track is about swamp marketing and heavily branded humanity, Glory Shoes is about isolation, Hollow Tree is about fearful redemption and Yellow Flower is about grief.

In terms of influences on your musical direction are there any unsung personal heroes of yours that have had an effect on the musical direction of Cocophone?

Well to begin with, I learned guitar from two friends and very talented guitarists named David Doyle and Stuart Cameron. Freya’s been playing violin since the age of 4 so there are probably too many direct influences to count for that instrument. The fragmented music scene in Dublin is disheartening at times and neither myself nor Freya have a lot of interest in being ‘scenesters’ so i suppose it’s the people close to us that keep us grounded and away from the all too common self-fulfilling prophecy of being king of the conformed youth. Freya’s parents have a keen interest in everything about Cocophone as music is very much everyday life in the household. My parents have played a great financial role in my musical development. The tools of the trade don’t come cheap when you want quality so practical support is also very important. The two closest friends of mine, Ian O’Beirne and Ollie Darmody have a great influence on how I see the world and what I get inspired to write about. I’m sure they’re not always aware that a chat about something topical in the pub later translates to burning the midnight oil interested by an imagined plot from it worthy of a song. There are others close to us that help greatly with our music.

You won the 'Becks on the Night' band competition in Boyles of Slane last year! Apart from the money what did you and Cocophone as a band gain from being part of the competition?

Firstly, we gained many friendships with Boyles and its regulars. The owners Andrew Cassidy and Ditte Kiilerich have been very good to us and it’s their warmth and love for music that has awarded them with a reputable music venue. Boyles is a very special place for Cocophone as it was the first competition we took part in (we previously refused to do any competitions) and yet winning it was momentous for us as it finally brought Cocophone out comfortably to a wider audience. Previously, we had spent a few years fairly isolated and working on our sound. To be exposed so immediately helped us see clearly whether Cocophone had become the kind of music we wanted to be a part of. The music and performances that won that competition have become the staple for our sound and we are continuing to grow a confidence in its viability to attract more and more interest from people in the future. However, winning can look good on paper but it won’t write the rest of the pages in Cocophone’s history.

What's do you see at being the ultimate direction for the band in 2011?

When you ask direction, I immediately think of live performance. Festivals and supporting commercially greater bands would be a key aim for Cocophone this year. At the moment, we are pushing to materialize much of the hype that kick started this year with both The Irish Times (Ticket) and Heineken Music featuring us as a Band to Watch in 2011. Honestly, the overall direction in 2011 is impossible to foresee now as with each door opening, there in turn arises more uncertainty about not only the paths then taken by Cocophone, but the very choices at our disposal. However, this is a good complaint and thus the primary objective is for Freya and I to remain truthful to the performance, delivery and exposure of our music. We would also like to develop the band in conjunction with the continuing foundational two-piece of Cocophone.

The next big gig for Cocophone is your own headline gig in Academy 2 on Friday 11th February. How much are you looking forward to that? Have you got a support band?

We are really excited about the show. MCD are promoting it and we are experiencing a lot of media exposure for the show. It will be a definitive marker for Cocophone’s massive social progress in the last few months. Also, ticket sales have been very positive so I would advise anyone who would like to come to get theirs from Ticketmaster right away as it’s a small (but cosy) venue. What we are looking forward to most is the seamless putting together of old, not so old and very new material as it will be an elaborate set for Cocophone. Also, there are plans to have aa newly joined bass player performing some songs with us on the night so he will be formally introduced then. Cocophone have not decided on a support act yet but this will be announced shortly.

How can fans-to-be gain access to your music?

The music of Cocophone can be downloaded on ITunes. Simply search ‘Cocophone’ in the online store. The New EP ‘Special Offers’ is available NOW. You can also visit our music at

For updates, our facebook page is always full of activity. Simply ‘like’ the page and you will then be kept up to date with the manifesto of a Cocophonic Revolution.

Thanks Fin for the interview. I'm going to leave the last words for yourself!

Like many pleasures, Cocophone is good for you!
Thank you Peter. You’re a trooper for the cause of Irish Music.

It was announced on Facebook that Saramai & The Swords will be supporting Cocophone next Friday 11th Feb at The Academy 2!

Saramai and the Swords - No Way Back by Irish Sound of 2011 Mix

To listen to Cocophone's EP go here: