Bastille day in January: this week’s best rock and pop gigs

Plus: Ozzy Osbourne, Public Service Broadcasting, Rosie Carney and Kakkmaddafakka

British band Bastille are at the Olympia on Sunday to preview songs from their forthcoming album, Doom Days

British band Bastille are at the Olympia on Sunday to preview songs from their forthcoming album, Doom Days

 

SATURDAY 26

THE FINAL DISTRICT 8 DANCE
Tivoli Theatre, Dublin €20-€40 district8dublin.com

This is the last night that the Tivoli Theatre will serve its function as a club venue before it’s demolished and turned into an oaparthotel, the most damning word Dublin city has heard in recent years. District 8 and Hidden Agenda have invited Dave Clarke, Kiasmos, Sunil Sharpe and many, many others to say goodbye to the space that has played host to some of the biggest names in dance music and some of the best Pride events in Ireland. LB

SUNDAY 27

BASTILLE
Olympia Theatre, Dublin 7pm €45.05 (sold out) ticketmaster.ie

So named because lead singer Dan Smith’s birthday happens to be July 14th (Bastille Day, France’s national holiday), this UK band have trounced the opposition from the get-go. Unusually, for the band, this show is a particularly intimate one, as it acts as a road-test previewing of tunes from their forthcoming album, Doom Days. To make it extra special, tonight’s support acts include Lewis Capaldi (no stranger to Ireland) and ONR (aka Scottish songwriter and performer Robert Shields). TCL

KAKKMADDAFAKKA
The Grand Social, Dublin €16 thegrandsocial.ie

With gigs and festivals taking up almost every day between now and mid-April, Norwegian indie-rock band Kakkmaddafakka will be totally spent by the time prime festival season rolls around. But that’s July’s problem and for now, they’re ours. Naked Blue is their latest single which was released in November, suggesting that there might be a new Kakkmaddafakka album on the horizon. And if there’s one thing we can be sure of in 2019, what the world needs now is Kakk sweet Kakk. LB

JARROD DICKENSON
Whelan’s, Dublin 8pm €12 whelanslive.com

Texas songwriter Jarrod Dickenson has been doing the rounds and living the life of a continuously touring musician for some years, but his gaze is never too far away from his home turf. Now based in Nashville, the Waco native plays his latest slew of shows across Europe, UK, and Ireland, plugging his forthcoming EP, Under a Texas Sky. The first of what will be a series of releases that pay due regard to Texan songwriters, the EP features cover versions of songs by Willie Nelson, Guy Clark, Esther Phillips, Roy Orbison and Doug Sahm. TCL

Monday 28

HOBO JOHNSON & THE LOVEMAKERS
Vicar St, Dublin 7.30pm €23 ticketmaster.ie

Taking adversities and turning them into positives is a courageous thing to do, but Frank Lopes Jr knows all about that. The 25-year-old multiracial hip-hop artist started writing and performing 10 years ago, releasing his 2015 debut album, Hobo Johnson’s 94 Corolla, to a huge positive response. One of the primary differences about Johnson is that his hip-hop is self-proclaimed as kind and gentle. It is that, but it’s also charming and naive, which isn’t something you can say about hip-hop too often. This is Johnson’s second visit to Dublin in six months – from Whelan’s to Vicar Street in that period of time surely says something about his increasing appeal. TCL

TUESDAY 29

HAYLEY KIYOKO
Olympia Theatre, Dublin 7pm €23.90 (sold out) ticketmaster.ie; also Wednesday, same venue (sold out)

It took a while for California’s Hayley Kiyoko to drag herself away from acting to music, but last year the successful actor (from Disney fare to more adult roles in The Fosters, and CSI: Cyber) released her debut album, Expectations. Kiyoko’s LGBT-themed songs struck a chord with the critics and public alike – largely high placings in music charts around the world were aided by reviews that ranged from “sparkingly refreshing” (Guardian) to “the perfect pop album for the Instagram-era of self-discovery” (Irish Times). Kiyoko makes her Irish headline debut with these two sold-out shows. Lucky are they that have a ticket. TCL

WEDNESDAY 30

OZZY OSBOURNE
3Arena, Dublin 6.30pm €59 ticketmaster.ie

There was a time when Ozzy Osbourne was rightly regarded as a legend in heavy metal circles due to his pivotal part in the formation of Black Sabbath and, therefore, the invention of stoner rock. The influence of the UK Midlands shouldn’t be underestimated: cheerless, heavy-lidded druggy riffs, and some of the best music of the late 1960s/early 1970s prog rock era. Influence alone, however, cannot compensate for the decline in quality of Osbourne’s solo career, which has in recent years stumbled almost as erratically as the man himself. Nostalgia says those Black Sabbath songs sound pretty damned good from here – everything else says beware. Support is Judas Priest. TCL

THE DEAD SOUTH
Button Factory, Dublin 7.30pm €20 (sold out) buttonfactory.ie; also Thursday January 31st, The Limelight Belfast 6.30pm £19.80 (sold out) limelightbelfast.com

Word-of-mouth buzz was so loud for this Saskatchewan, Canada folk/bluegrass group that their Dublin gig had to be upgraded from Whelan’s to the Button Factory. The possible reason for such an increase in capacity is that The Dead South add to their folk-grass mix a hefty influence of alt.rock and punk. Which makes sense, when you take into account that their banjo player, Colton Crawford, and mandolin player, Scott Pringle, were once members of a grunge band. TCL

ROSIE CARNEY  
Grand Social, Dublin 8pm €13.54 thegrandsocial.ie

The year so far (I know, I know) has been kind enough to deliver what is surely going to be on those faraway end-of-year Best Albums of 2019 lists: Bare, the debut album by Donegal-raised Rosie Carney. In her early 20s, Carney has been writing songs since before her teens, so she knows the score by this point. A fraught time spent under the wings of a major record label taught her valuable lessons about independence, and such understanding (as well as touching on more personal matters) is borne out in the songs. A voice that blends Joni Mitchell with Laura Marling effortlessly aids the listening experience, so this launch gig for her album (“a gorgeous song cycle that runs the whole gamut of life, love and loss,” opined the Irish Times reviewer last week) will most assuredly be a special one. TCL

THURSDAY 31

PUBLIC SERVICE BROADCASTING
Olympia Theatre, Dublin 7pm €31.50 ticketmaster.ie; also Friday February 1st, The Limelight, Belfast 7pm £25 (sold out) limelightbelfast.com

Not every group can get away with releasing themed albums (2013’s Inform-Educate-Entertain focuses on the first expedition to Mount Everest; 2015’s The Race for Space on US/Soviet power battles for moon landings; 2017’s Every Valley on the mining industry in Wales), but London’s Public Service Broadcasting do just that by being very, very smart about it. Their output, largely instrumental interplays between electronics and guitar/drums, works better in a live setting due to the use of archive footage and public information films. Cerebral, enthralling and informative at the same time? Beam us up, Scotty. TCL

BUBBLEGUM AT THE BIG ROMANCE
The Big Romance, Dublin Adm free thebigromance.ie

As one music venue in Dublin closes, another gets its wings. The Big Romance, run by the Hidden Agenda team, opened on Parnell Street in November and, while it’s not a full-time music venue, it’s a vinyl bar that welcomes in different guest DJs to set the tone for the rest of the night. Come January 31st, that tone will go from tropical disco to deep down and bassy. Join Bubblegum and say goodbye to Dry January in one go. LB

FRIDAY FEBRUARY 1

MALCOLM MIDDLETON
Grand Social, Dublin 8pm €15.62 thegrandsocial.ie

Enough about Scottish musician Malcolm Middleton once having been in a band (Arab Strap) that called itself after a sex aid. While the band appears to be on an extended hiatus, Middleton (despite saying 10 years ago that he felt he had done all he could do in terms of songwriting) is by no means taking time off. His latest album – last year’s Bananas – continues pragmatic themes that have run through his work, with songs such as Love is a Momentary Lapse in Self-Loathing and Man Up, Man Down confronting (and connecting with) the human condition. Middleton also plays Róisín Dubh, Galway, on Sunday February 3rd. TCL

ALL CITY X FSL: ELLLL RELEASE PARTY 
Tengu, Dublin €5-€10 eventbrite.ie

Cork DJ and producer ELLLL (Ellen King) has got a couple of things to celebrate. Firstly, she has named her forthcoming EP Febreeze and that alone is worthy of applause. Secondly, it’s being released on Dublin’s First Second Label and, with the help of All City, they’re throwing a party to welcome it into the world. Febreeze is available to pre-order and download as digital and vinyl on firstsecondlabel.bandcamp.com. G’wan. Support the parish. LB

SHIVERS PRESENTS PARAMIDA AND KRIS BAHA 
Electric, Galway €5-€10 facebook.com/electricgalway

In a full Electric takeover, music promoters Shivers are trying to get us set up for spring on this blessed St Bridget’s Day. On the rooftop bar, Berlin DJ Paramida will guide you along with house, trance and disco tunes while the Berlin-based Australian DJ Kris Baha will make his Irish debut downstairs with darkened and industrial synthpop. A special guest for the main floor is soon to be announced. Will it be St Bridget? No. It won’t. LB

HOMEBEAT PRESENTS: GYÐA VALTÝSDÓTTIR
Dublin Unitarian Church, Dublin €16.95-€26.32 homebeat.ie

It’s been six years since the Icelandic experimental pop group Múm released their album Smilewound, and while we’ll happily welcome them back at any stage with open arms, their break gives us the chance to enjoy the output of individual members. In her solo work, cellist and Múm founder Gyða Valtýsdóttir takes her classical training and otherworldly songwriting to create something very soft but totally captivating. Her band on the night consists of Shazad Ismaily on synths and Julian Sartorius on drums. LB

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