Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

EP09 – reviews from the second day

All reviews from the Daily Ticket, to be published on-site in Stradbally on Sunday. More recaps in the morning when I get home from the Silent Disco/rave in the forest/whatever else I come across in the next few hours. 2 …

Sun, Sep 6, 2009, 01:19

   

All reviews from the Daily Ticket, to be published on-site in Stradbally on Sunday. More recaps in the morning when I get home from the Silent Disco/rave in the forest/whatever else I come across in the next few hours. 2 Many DJs currently making the Daily Ticket office rattle and roll.

Marina and the Diamonds

This is the first time Marina Diamond — aka Marina and the Diamonds — has graced Irish shores, and her enthusiasm on this freshman outing was infectious. She has that quality found only in new artists: she seemed genuinely thrilled not only that the crowd was there but that people knew her songs. Her performance of I Am Not a Robot was electrifying: a rapt audience fell silent as Diamond delivered her best-known song with overwhelming passion. New tune Numb was equally well received and Obsessions, Diamond’s debut single, was a massive crowd-pleaser. She’ll be back in November, kids – if you missed her yesterday, you’d be fools to let it happen again. (Rosemary MacCabe)

Roddy Doyle

“There is nothing quite as exhilarating as going into a portaloo in the morning and realising the guy who just left it probably slept there,” Roddy Doyle told a crowded Arts Council tent yesterday. We might disagree, but trust Roddy to find humour in the dismal. Sitting comfortably in his wellies (he’s camping), he read Animals, his new short story. Main character George looks back to a decade when there wasn’t a lot of money but Ireland was on the rise. Now the lost decade looms and Ireland has had its day. All a man (sorry) can do is have a pint. How depressing. On a brighter note, Paula Spencer could come knocking on your wall soon. All hail. (Leonie Corcoran)

Tulla Céilí Band

Sixty years a-jigging. The many, many players who’ve spent time in the mighty Tulla Céilí Band down through the years have surely played on some fierce strange stages over the years, from New York’s Carnegie Hall to various parish halls around Feakle. But there’s still a first time for everything, and the sight of a lashing of Body and Soul punters dancing the Walls of Limerick yesterday afternoon can now be added to the group’s wall of fame. These trad maestros work every time because their sound is part of our collective DNA. We’ve all grown up with bands like this belting and swinging away like good-o, and when those fiddles and squeezeboxs started to roar yesterday, the hairs went up on the back of many a neck. Next year, stick them on the main stage and we bet it will be once around the field and mind the dresser. (Jim Carroll)

The XX

That there was a packed Electric Arena to see The XX is testament to the growing buzz around these south London kids. Their album xx is one that steadily gets under your skin, its sparse, spellbinding, strange, minimal echoes pulling you deeper and deeper into the band’s web. Such growing popularity means the band is now going to have to come of age very quickly on big stages like this. There’s no time or opportunity to hone that sound in small rooms, in front of uninterested punters. Naturally, they played it straight down the middle. Like the Cocteau Twins when they were in their sullen, rabbits-in-the-headlights live anti-pomp, there’s feck-all movement onstage; instead, all effort went into recreating the album, track by moody track. And, wonderfully, it worked, though it will naturally be a far different proposition six months from now. (Jim Carroll)

Brian Wilson

California, baby – it’s a state of mind. Like many others this weekend, Brian Wilson may have thought he was in Dublin, but there’s no doubting where he and his players took us at dusk yesterday. This was the stuff of long, sultry summer nights – singing close-knit harmonies under a full moon, hearing the waves lap gently on the beach behind you. Sounds and sights a million minds from Co Laois, it must be said. But do not underestimate the power of pop to evoke blissful places. In My Room and Then I Kissed Her (co-songwriter Ellie Greenwich was surely looking on from above) were just two lessons from Wilson’s masterclass in perfect sounds. You may know these songs as well as the toes on your feet but tonight, as thousands rocked back and forth with smiles as wide as the Pacific Ocean on their faces, they were beyond magic. (Jim Carroll)

Tommy Tiernan

It was a case of another audience insisting on finding something funny. Tommy Tiernan’s fans turned up en masse. And they laughed. A lot. His strained voice (apparently Hector’s 40th took its toll on Friday night) expelled its first f-word within 10 seconds in and it was all big cheers from there on. Recession? Big cheer. The dole? Bigger cheer. Potato blight? Still funny. Really? It only became strained when Tiernan recommended the joy of not using contraception: “I have kids, five of ‘em. I much prefer to have kids than use anything. It’s less hassle.” REALLY? Cue some overdue awkward shuffling. (Leonie Corcoran)

Klaxons

The first thing you see when the lights go down is a glowstick. No matter what Klaxons do, it seems that the nu-rave tag will follow them around like a bad smell. Their Myths of the Near Future debut album may have seen them grabbing the 2007 Mercury Music Prize, but it was hard to see where the band might go with that collection of rather disjointed and messy tunes. It seems, then, that they’ve turned to their own record collections for inspiration. As they tore – with a snarl – into a set of headbanging electro, you could spot shades and spots of psych-rock à la United States Of America and bugged-out art-tech from the Justice gang in their sound. Old favourites may have been greeted with roars, but it was newer, untitled fare that indicated that this is a band that’s happy to abandon a bandwagon. (Jim Carroll)

Imelda May

So when did she get this big? The Crawdaddy tent was heaving with May’s all-singing, all-dancing fans last night. She kicked off with Feel Me – and they certainly did, all the back to the crowds outside. She mixed it up with admittedly overplayed tracks from Love Tattoo, beginning with the title track. Big, Bad, Handsome Man in particular got a huge reception. Even the many men crooned to her on-stage hubby (the guitarist). . . strange.
From there, her original Rockabilly numbers and Beatles tribute, Oh! Darling, gave a nice blend to proceedings. No matter how you feel, this Liberties girl is hot. And her band are too. A fun package, in all. (Leonie Corcoran)