This year sees Limerick taking on the role of Capital of Culture. As well as this 2014 will see Indie Week Ireland relocating to the banks of the Shannon, April 23-26. Which reminds me...applications for acts to perform at Indie Week are still open and all of the relevant information is available here.
To celebrate Limerick's tenure as Capital of Culture, here is a look at some of the best acts (past and present) to entertain the rockers, skaters, students, shoegazers, indie kids and general population of the treaty city over the last couple of years.
Super Model Twins
The now defunct Super Model Twins were once the purveyors of some very catchy hooks and great sing along choruses. Having managed to turn many heads around the country and rack up some very impressive gigs under their belts (including opening for The Cranberries in Thomond Park) they seemed to, unfortunately, disappear not long after the release of their debut album Raincloud Free. The album is still available to download from here.
Formed in 2000, Woodstar managed to create a great buzz for themselves and an impressive fan base which counted the legendary Tom Dunne among its ranks. Unfortunately after the release of several singles, an album and getting some reasonable airplay, Woodstar have gone the way of an Irish band with huge potential and disappeared into (even further) obscurity. Enjoy their track Dumb Punk Song.
Walter Mitty and the Realists
I Couldn't talk about Indie Week without mentioning Walter Mitty and The Realists. Known for their fantastic live shows, they were the winners of Indie Week Canada 2008. Sadly, this fantastic Limerick outfit is no longer with us, but they leave behind them a fine body of work, including their 2009 album Green Light Go, which is still available from iTunes.
Moving on to bands who still count themselves among the active members of Limerick's vibrant music scene, here are Senakah. 2012 saw these folk enjoy great success with the release of there single Human Relations, which racked up an impressive amount of airplay. The success was helped in no small way by the very clever and entertaining video which features an hilarious cameo from David Hope. Senakah are releasing their new single Sinking this Friday, March 7th. Check out their website http://www.senakah.com/ for more information on upcoming dates and releases.
Originally from Nashville, Kiernan spent many years captivating audiences in Limerick with his impressive brand of acoustic folk rock, before returning to the other side of the pond. Kiernan is constantly working on new material and seems to be forever on the road! If he ever manages to drag himself back over to this side of the water, I cannot recommend more highly that you catch on of his shows. Keep up to date with his comings and goings on Facebook and over at his website.
Here is a band with an impressive C.V.! Having managed to get themselves a very high slot on the main stage of Polish festival Bialystock...twice, Protobaby released several singles and albums under frontman Colm McGuinness. They even managed to get a video banned from youtube! (How, I will never know..but you could not ask for better publicity for the release of your new single.) 2013 saw the departure of Colm from the band. The surprise replacement with female vocalist Aoife McLoughlin has done nothing to slow down Protobaby. Their most recent single Keep Running is available now from iTunes. Keep up to date with upcoming show and releases on Facebook.
"Limerick Raised, Dublin based indie kids" Animal Beats, are playing a blinder at the minute. Having featured at Whelan's One to Watch Festival 2014, they have also played support to the likes of Royseven, The Minutes, The Kanyu Tree and Fred. There current E.P. Cheap Carnival is available now from iTunes.
Led by former front man of the once legendary Limerick band, The Driven (Brendan Markham), Parliament Square is a collection of some of the cities finest and most well know musicians. A relatively new addition to the Limerick scene, they are currently working on material for an album due out later this year. For more information, head on over here.
This Limerick based 4 piece are getting ready to release their new E.P. Spirit of a City on April 11th. With shades of The National, The Cure and Interpol, Moscow Metro in their own words deal with "the subjects we don't talk about, the things we bury deep." These guys will have you gazing so hard at your shoes that you will know every little scuff on the white tips of your Dunnes Stores knock-off Converse! For more information regarding their impending release and a selection of dates go follow these fine chaps on Facebook.
I'm going to be honest and say that this whole post may have been conceived as an excuse to play this video. Also veterans of Indie week, Leading Armies have been blowing audiences away with their impressive live show. These guys are going to be huge! This video featuring The Markevin Light Orchestra should explain just why...Catch these guys playing at Indie Week Limerick 2014. You will not be disappointed. Follow them on Facebook here. Limerick funk rock has never sounded so good!
I know that there are many great Limerick bands from the past and present that I have neglected to mention, but this list of 10 represents only a fraction of the great talent coming out of Limerick. Feel free to comment and mention any other bands that I have left out.