16 rock and pop concerts to catch in Ireland this week

Solange, Action Bronson, Anna Burch, The Academic are among this week’s highlights

As the headline act, there’s no doubt that Solange Knowles (recently named 2018 Harvard Foundation Artist of the Year) will grab all of the attention at Longitude.

As the headline act, there’s no doubt that Solange Knowles (recently named 2018 Harvard Foundation Artist of the Year) will grab all of the attention at Longitude.


Saturday, July 14th

Katie Laffan
Tricky’s, McGarrigles, Sligo 10pm, €12 cairdefestival.com
Appearing as part of Sligo town’s Cairde Arts Festival, Dublin songwriter Katie Laffan has been making many people clap-happy with the likes of her debut EP Dead as Disco, her latest EP Spacer, and standalone tunes such as Tastemaker and Cried Wolf. It is as a live performer, however, that Laffan strikes it just as rich, as she mixes and matches various music styles (including soul, funk, reggae, pop) to brilliant effect. Shortly after Laffan’s gig, DJ Nooneboy will pull more than several bangers out of the bag. Visit cairdefestival.com for further details. TCL

The Telegraph Building, Belfast, £33 ticketmaster.ie
Producer and DJ MK, also known as Marc Kinchen, is bringing some of his own blend of Detroit house to Belfast’s event warehouse space. Going strong since the early 90s, remixing the likes of Nightcrawlers’ Push the Feeling on, MK has had a second lease of life with the success of his single 17. Support on the night comes from Glasgow’s KC Lights and Bristol’s Will Clarke in the main room and local support comes from Bangor based duo Themm and Tommy McCoy. LB

Sunday, July 15th

Longitude, Marlay Park, Rathfarnham, Dublin, €69.50 ticketmaster.ie
She may be performing as part of Longitude’s final day, but as the headline act, there’s no doubt that Solange Knowles (recently named 2018 Harvard Foundation Artist of the Year) will grab all of the attention. While the world and all of its relatives are aware that she is the younger sister of Beyoncé, forget about comparing them. Across three albums (2002’s little known Solo Star, 2008’s well-received Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams, and 2016’s highly successful A Seat at the Table), Solange as a singer, songwriter and performance artist trips along at her own pace, unencumbered by the promotion of new material. A special performance, no doubt, awaits. TCL

National Concert Hall, Dublin, 8pm €35 nch.ie


Rochdale musicians Sean Booth and Rob Brown have been frightening horses and scaring children for over 30 years. Better known as Autechre, the virtually anonymous musicians have cared little for stylistic conventions, and across 13 albums (the latest of which is this year’s NTS Session 1-4) have fashioned a form of complex experimental music with roots in electro and hip-hop and which has been influenced by developments in digital generative synthesis as well as contemporary composers such as Karlheinz Stockhausen, Bernard Parmegiani, and Iannis Xenakis. As an extra special treat for lovers of the music, Autechre will perform in total darkness for the duration of the show. And your mobile phones? Off, off, off. TCL

Tuesday, July 17th

Sofi Tukker
Whelan’s, Dublin, €22 whelanslive.com
After the roaring success of their sold out show in The Button Factory in January, the New York Sofi Tukker are back to run riot with their sugary blend of pop and house music. Their latest single Everybody Needs a Kiss is a dizzying and honking dance floor bop and while their music is more suited to a a sweaty dance floor at 2am, they have the power to make you feel like this Tuesday gig could be a Friday night one instead. LB

Wednesday, July 18th

Action Bronson
The Academy, Dublin, €42.50 ticketmaster.ie
With a filthy humour, a sharp eye and an abrasive New York attitude that somehow passes as loveable, Action Bronson is the full package as a rapper and as the host of Viceland’s food documentary show F*ck, That’s Delicious. A man of extremes, his music flits between grandiose, offensive and hilarious and if that sounds like your thing, then pick up a (slightly expensive) ticket for his Dublin show as part of his Blue Chips 7000 tour. LB

Thursday, July 19th

Anna Burch
Whelan’s Upstairs, Dublin, 8pm ,€15 whelanslive.com

Anna Burch
Anna Burch

Oh, yes – anyone on the lookout for that rare blend of perfect pop and astute, wry lyrics need search no further than Anna Burch. The Michigan-raised songwriter/musician released her debut album Quit the Curse earlier this year, and from then – on this side of the Atlantic, at least – she has reaped the benefits from being such a naturally gifted tunesmith. Years spent serving other people’s requirements in bands (including Frontier Ruckus, and Failed Flowers) has resulted in Burch knowing exactly what she didn’t want to do. The outcome is a self-aware songwriter that is as sure-footed as an experienced mountain goat. TCL

Joshua Burnside & James Spaite
Spirit Store, Dundalk, Co Louth, 9pm, Adm free, spiritstore.ie
This is quite the double-bill for those who like nifty, dexterous guitar playing and cool alt–folk songwriting. Belfast’s Joshua Burnside is an explorative singer-songwriter whose debut album, Ephrata, won the most recent Northern Ireland Music Prize. James Spaite is a San-Diego based singer-songwriter and percussive finger-style guitar player, currently in Ireland to promote his latest album, Riverside. Each one alone would be worth your while to pay a visit to this excellent provincial venue (which is right by Dundalk port), but this two-for-one is a steal. TCL

Ailbhe Reddy, Slow Skies & Maria KellyRoisin Dubh, Galway, €12/14 roisindubh.net
As part of the Galway International Arts Festival, which kicks off on July 16th, some of the finest women on the Irish music scene are sharing the stage in Róisín Dubh, showcasing their wears and talent. From the folk stylings of Ailbhe Reddy to the prowess of Slow Skies’s Karen Sheridan’s songwriting and Maria Kelly’s ability to transport you to an ethereal world, this is an essential gig to add to the diary. LB

Wood Quay Summer Sessions: Presented by Contemporary Music Centre (CMC)
Wood Quay Ampitheatre, Dublin, FREE facebook.com/WoodQuaySummerSessions/
Every Thursday in July, the Wood Quay Summer Sessions provide some live music as you sit outside in the sunshine during your lunchtime break. As you peruse the many food trucks on offer, members of the contemporary music group Kirkos Ensemble are taking to the stage for one hour for your entertainment. Kicking off at 1pm, you can catch Sebastian Adams on the viola and both Jane Hackett and Siún Milne on violin. LB

Hennessy Sound Lounge: An Autobiographical Journey Through Sound
Hen’s Teeth, Dublin, €8 plus booking fee eventbrite.ie/e/hennessy-sound-lounge-an-autobiographical-journey-through-sound-tickets-47024074272 , until July 28
For the remainder of July, the art shop Hen’s Teeth will transform into a “Japanese listening rooms of the 70s” that features a custom crafted sound system by Toby Hatchett as avid vinyl collectors walk you through their life in music. You can catch all-round legend and photographer BP Fallon (July 27th), film-maker Vivienne Dick (July 21st) and Irish musicians like David Kitt (July 19th) and Ships (July 25th) talking about their most treasured records. LB

Friday, July 20th

The Academic
Iveagh Gardens, Dublin, 6.30pm, €35 ticketmaster.ie
While this Co Westmeath pop/rock band has been tipping along since all the members were at school with each other, it is only in the past 18 months that matters have changed so much that they have been able to graduate from small stages and support slots to headline venues as spacious and prestigious as the Iveagh Gardens. Truth is, The Academic deserve it – this year’s debut album, Tales from the Backseat is chock full of tunes that ping around your head like a pinball. Special guests include UK alt–pop band Flyte, and New York City-based Dublin singer-songwriter, Sorcha Richardson. TCL

Death in Vegas
District 8 @ The Tivoli, Dublin, 7.30pm, €27.50 eventbrite.ie
Not many people know that the real name of Death in Vegas’s frontman Richard Fearless is actually Richard Maguire (born and raised in Zambia, the son of a Belfast man), but the real surprise is how long this band has been going – from 1994 to now, a mere six albums have been released. Another surprise? Most of the band’s albums have featured guests vocalists, from Iggy Pop and Dot Allison (1999’s The Contino Sessions), Hope Sandoval, Liam Gallagher (2002’s Scorpio Rising), Katie Stelmanis (2011’s Trans-Love Energies), and Sasha Grey (2016’s Transmission). Expect a mix of (as one UK music magazine put it): “psychedelic club-based paranoia.” You’re welcome. TCL

Townlands Carnival
Rusheen Farm Estate, Macroom, 3pm, €140/€125 (weekend ticket) townlandscarnival.com, until Sunday, July 22nd
A somewhat under-the-radar multi-stranded festival, Townlands Carnival festival is located in woods on the Rusheen Farm Estate, and across five stages in walled gardens and woodlands, the organisers aim to present what’s happening in Irish music, culture, and arts in general. Headliners include Sister Sledge, Leftfield (DJ set), King Kong Company, Kila, while other goodies include The Eskies, Bantum, Orchid Collective, Lowli, and The Latchikos. Alongside the music are activities and entertainers for the kids, art installations, chill-out areas, and above average food and beverage outlets. TCL

The Cobblestone, Dublin, 8.30pm, €12 eventbrite.ie
Co Kildare’s Inni-K (aka Eithne Ní Catháin) is a multi-faceted Irish singer, songwriter, performer who in 2015 released her debut album, The King has Two Horse’s Ears (“an album designed to make the world a better place,” – State magazine). Since then, she has become a welcome presence on Irish and international stages and looks set to continue that with a series of summer festival appearances, including Arcadian Field (Bellurgan Park, County Louth, August 4th/5th) and Another Love Story (Killyon Manor, County Meath, August 17th-19th). Her new single, Edges, presents the singer as someone who is unafraid to venture into new areas (check out the video, directed by Myles O’Reilly). TCL

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