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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: December 15, 2011 @ 6:11 pm

    If you only do one thing this weekend . . . experiment

    Laurence Mackin

    Listen: The Joinery Gallery in Stoneybatter is a little haven of experimentalism, and this year has been playing host to Sensoria, an evening of emerging and slightly off the wall performances with music. Tonight sees the last offering for 2012, and it features Catscars (who you may have seen play with Patrick Kelleher), Bantum (“slippery grooves with oodles of southern-fried electronic mojo” according to this parish’s Jim Carroll) and Brian Conniffe with Suzanne Walsh, who look to hypnosis, linguistics and ritual magick for inspiration while trying to figure out how to mend the Cartesian split (look, we just reproduce this stuff). Click here for more information.

    Live: O Emperor must be fierce happy with how their year has gone, as they survey it witheringly from atop their throne built from the skulls of their vanquished enemies (or is that just a rumour we made up). They’ve been quiet enough of late, while working on the follow up to the hugely popular Hither Thither (which also won an award for album with most Ts and Hs in it), but if you can’t wait for its release you can catch a few tracks from the album this weekend. On Friday they are in Christchurch Triskel in Cork, and on Saturday night the band play the Button Factory in Dublin, with support from the excellent Katie Kim, who has a brilliant album of her own due in January 2012. Clickity click here for more.

    Give praise: Lordy, if this isn’t the time to break out in a few hallelujahs then I don’t know when is, and there are two praise-be offerings this weekend to get you dancing in the aisles. The Dublin Gospel Choir will be brewing up a sacred storm in St Kevin’s Parish Church in Tinahely, Co Wicklow on Sunday at 8pm, with soul support from Anthony Morgan’s Inspirational Choir of Harlem. Back in the capital, the 40-strong Diva Voices female choir will be getting all medieval on a selection of carols by Benjamin Britten in the Unitarian Church on Sunday at 4pm. Admission to the latter is free but you can make a donation to the Capuchin Friars Food Project. Can I get an amen?

    Gritty theatre: One of the big surprises in recent months has been just how good Love/Hate got in its second series (even if it did get a bit aimless with the last episode in the series). If you haven’t seen it, it’s well worth checking out on the RTE Player, with Tom Vaughan-Lawlor stealing the show, while Aidan Gillen reminds us all why he is such a scary, scary man. If, though, like Sam Mendes, you think that working in 3D means not creating preposterous overblown semi-racist rubbish on screen with blue people in it, but simply making theatre, then On the Batter might well be up your ill-lit alley. Anthony Goulding’s play is a noirish Irish comedy about a cocaine dealer under threat from a vicious new rival – aren’t the all, dear, aren’t they all. It’s at The Complex, in Smithfield until Saturday. Click here for information.

    Bleeps and beats: Bit Symphony is an intriguing and ambitious project by Liam O’Callaghan that is well worth taking a moment out of the madding Christmas crowds to consider. This is an audio-visual installation with turntables and amplifiers that have been tweaked and tempered to autonomously perform a complex musical composition of looping records. Can an artist, who doesn’t play any instruments, create music using loops, samples, scratched sounds and jagged tones? Pop along to the Temple Bar Gallery to find out for yourself. O’Callaghan’s work at Dublin Contemporary suggests has got the artistic chops to go with the swagger.

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