‘Somewhere Else’ is the latest stunning release from Irish electronic producer and artist Elaine Mai.
Since releasing her last EP, The Colour Of The Night, Elaine has created euphoric remixes for some of Ireland’s best-loved artists, including Loah and Pillow Queens. She has also collaborated with Soulé and Sorcha Richardson on the massively successful ‘Butterflies’ and released ‘Heartbeat’, a beautiful original track dedicated to her wife.
The recent lockdown has given Elaine time to regroup and focus her musical efforts on some incredibly exciting projects. She’s been part of the hugely successful ‘Irish Women in Harmony’ cover of ‘Dreams’ in aid of SAFE Ireland. Released with 38 other female artists, it clocked up over 200k streams and 2.5 million views in its first week. She’s also been working on a new body of original music. Stay tuned for some exciting news coming later this year.
Now, her latest single is due for release on July 3rd. ‘Somewhere Else’ is a stand-alone track that’s melancholy yet uplifting. Of the track, Elaine says:
‘This song is about that feeling of not belonging and everything that comes with that. I think most of us have felt that way at some point, especially growing up. For me, this song captures that sadness and uncertainty, but there’s also a feeling of hope in it, a feeling that things are going to get better’.
The track will be released on July 3rd on Bandcamp. With the service waiving their fees that day, all proceeds from sales of Elaine Mai’s music will be going to Origins Eile – a grassroots community organisation supporting, celebrating, and uplifting QTIBPOC (Queer Trans Intersex Black & People Of Colour) in Ireland. The track hits streaming services on the 10th of July, pre-save here.
Ben Reel releases ‘All In Good Time’, the latest single from his album ‘The Nashville Calling’.
‘The Nashville Calling’ is the title of the ninth studio album by Irish artist Ben Reel. Produced by Will Kimbrough, Ben Reel and Tommy Womack and featuring Garry W Tallent on bass from the legendary E Street Band. The album contains eleven new tracks all written by Ben Reel.
It was recorded at Skinny Elephant Studios in Nashville. This album was done and dusted in just three days with all live takes. Following Ben’s critically acclaimed experimental slow burner `Land of Escape’ from 2018, this new record has a more Americana, rootsy rock, live band feel.
Since his debut album ‘This Is the Movie’ back in 1999, Ben has reinvented himself from album to album, influenced by different styles of music over the years.
As one critic said, “He’s not afraid to throw in some folk, soul, reggae vibes, which in turn call to mind John Hiatt at his best.” Another describes him as “somewhere in the middle ground between rock and jazz or a sound that is sometimes reminiscent of Dylan and the Band.”
In a solo career which now spans over twenty years, Ben has received worldwide critical acclaim with numerous high profile TV/Radio appearances like BBC, RTE and Dutch NPO Radio. Supporting Jools Holland, Alabama 3 & The Cranberries and he has collaborated musically with such names as Hal Ketchum & The Blockheads. He has co written and performed live with his fellow countryman Tony McLoughlin and some of Nashville’s finest such as David Olney & Irene Kelley.
In the past Ben was selected to play an official showcase at Folk Alliance in Memphis TN and has toured as double bill with Tommy Womack (Nashville) in the U.S & UK and also with legendary American folk singer/songwriter Eric Andersen in the UK & NL. While in Nashville he was invited to play the famous Bluebird Cafe on a number of occasions, most recently Sept 2018.
Over the last ten years Ben has enjoyed successful tours in Ireland, UK, Europe & U.S.A, receiving rave reviews and attracting a growing loyal fan base. He has graced big festivals such as Jamming@Hippie Jacks (USA), Musiktan festival in Bilbao, (ESP). Haarlem Jazz & Huntenpop (NL), Robin Hood folk festival (UK), Kilkenny rhythm & roots, Cork jazz & Electric Picnic (EIRE).
Ben Reel is a native of Silverbridge, South Armagh, Ireland. Soon after high school at the age of 17 he started his musical career in 1989 performing & songwriting with local band “Trim The Velvet”’ before going solo in the late nineties.
Against the backdrop of the troubles in the North of Ireland, music became Ben’s way out.
He first picked up the guitar when he was fifteen years old, inspired by the realness of the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Van Morrison & Neil Young whose music struck a chord that resonated deep into Reel’s psyche. This is still reflected in Ben’s heart on the sleeve approach to performing and writing. Today Ben Reel performs occasionally as solo or duo with his wife Julieanne or while in the Netherlands with his Dutch band `The Haarlem Boys’ but mainly he performs with his fantastic Irish band `Ben Reel Band’. He divides his time between touring Europe and the USA and producing music for himself and other musicians.
Designed to bring those fresh summer days straight to your ears and a tan to your soul, First Day Lion’s ‘Summer Child’ will help shake away them chilly blues and make the sun come out!
Inspired by our changing world, and those trying to make it a better place.
“We wanted to deliver something warm, lively, and play as a theme for the summer. For inspiration we looked to our own passions. One that ranks right up there is ‘being happy’. Priorities right? But being conscious of the big, blue and green marble that we call “home”, is up there too. So we set out combining the two, keeping in mind that we wanted to make sure anyone, anywhere could play it. At the beach, in the car, being Irish and googling images of clear blue skies and an outdoor pool, etc.
Probably the biggest influence for the song was one, young, inspirational leader, Greta Thunberg. We wanted the song to take from the point of view of someone who could understand that the world needed to change, but takes a minute to remember the ‘simpler’ life before. The bigger picture however is that things are changing. There are other answers to leading a cosy life, and some are just as easy with simple adjustments of how we live day to day. But education is key. Enter; someone who can represent the generation that will inherit the world we leave behind.
‘Summer Child’ is the youth and the generations still to come, while the song is taken from the perspective of us, the ones who will be leaving it to them, and whom can still make a positive change.“
Marty Mone returns to the spotlight with his own rendition of the Nashville hit ‘Dirt On My Boots’ by Jon Pardi.
Marty Mone’s claim to fame has been through his slew of country originals thus far, and this marks his first attempt at recording and releasing a cover song. This comes after a barrage of requests from fans for him to do a cover — it’s safe to say that their wish has been duly granted.
According to Marty, the track draws close parallels to his own life, as its central themes revolve around being a driver who enjoys the simple life of heading out at night and letting loose. From Castleblayney to Nashville, the agricultural vibes are ever present and what made this song a logical choice to debut as his first ever cover.
Notably, Marty equipped himself with his 1979 American Stratocaster to make this cover happen. The track follows the success of the re-release of ‘Hit The Diff’, which was released in May 2020. The track is accompanied by a video clip, also produced by Marty Mone, and features agricultural clips, nightlife and live footage from a selection of his previous performances.
Ahead of this release, Marty is set to take part in Ireland’s very first drive-in gig, ‘The Farmer’s Bash Country Drive In’. The gig is happening in Ballymena on the 3rd and 4th July 2020. Then it is back to the studio where Marty is working hard on a new album.
Following the critical success of ‘Stones’ and ‘Nocturnal’, Luke Clerkin is set to release a new single on July 10th. ‘Not In Love’ will be the third release from Luke’s upcoming project ‘What Little Time We Have’, with this release seeing him continue with the full-band sound. ‘What Little Time We Have’ is set to be released everywhere on July 24th.
The songs on ‘What Little Time We Have’ were produced by previous collaborator Gavin Doyle, as well as Jack Keenan, at Cabin Space Studios in Dublin. They were mastered by the internationally renowned, Pete Maher (Jack White, Damien Rice, U2), in London.
Talking about ‘Not In Love’, Luke said, “‘Not In Love’ is about a self-destructive habit I once had of jumping head first into a relationship without giving it time to grow. This song explores a particular relationship in which I learned a lot about myself.’’
“The chorus lyrics ‘They say I’m not in love, I’m just excited..’ refer to my friends telling me that I should relax a little bit, as we were texting constantly, and they saw this as an unhealthy thing for the beginning of a relationship. Of course, I didn’t listen to them, and it fell apart, and the second verse reflects on that.”
Luke Clerkin has been playing and releasing music for the last five years, gaining international airplay and support, whilst also topping the Irish Singer Songwriter Charts on multiple occasions.
He is also known for playing over 250 gigs in 2015 as a way of honing his craft. Since then he has headlined famous Dublin venues such as Whelan’s, The Workman’s Club, and The Button Factory. His music has brought him all over the world, with multiple tours of Germany, as well as festival slots in America, The UK, and Ireland.
‘Not In Love’ will be released on all streaming and download platforms on July 10th.
You can pre-save it here: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/lukeclerkin/not-in-love
Exactly 20 years after the release of his self-titled, debut solo (& No.1) album, one of the best-loved singers of our generation, Ronan Keating, returns with an album that encapsulates his many musical achievements since the millennium.
Entitled ‘Twenty Twenty’, and set for release on Decca Records on July 24th, Ronan describes his new record as, “a greatest hits of brand new music”. To help him celebrate, Keating made two inspired choices: to dive into his back catalogue and revisit three of his biggest hits and, for some of the new tracks, call in some friends.
With production assistance from his longstanding wingman Steve Lipson (Annie Lennox, The Rolling Stones, Simple Minds, Whitney Houston, Paul McCartney), as well as stand-out solo tracks, Ronan has collaborated with some of his closest musical (and chart-topping) friends for ‘Twenty Twenty’, featuring duets with Alison Krauss, Robbie Williams, Emile Sande, Shania Twain, Nina Nesbitt and Clare Bowen.
So to the classics: Ronan Keating has released some of the defining pop songs of the past two decades which simply had to be featured – cornerstone tracks, ‘Life is a Rollercoaster’, ‘Lovin’ Each Day’ and his debut solo single ‘When You Say Nothing At All’ (originally recorded for the soundtrack to the blockbuster film Notting Hill), are here brilliantly reworked, bringing back memories but with a celebratory 2020 twist.
Since the original break-up of Boyzone, one of the most successful British bands of the Nineties, Keating has forged a soaraway solo career: two back-to-back No.1 singles straight out of the gate, 30 consecutive Top 10 singles, 10 studio albums, multiple tours, 20 million records sold on top of the 25 million sold with Boyzone. In other areas, too, he’s happily stretched his wings: judging on both the X Factor and The Voice in Australia, acting for both television drama and film, a highly acclaimed stint on London’s West End and, now, bringing breakfast show entertainment to the nation with his morning radio show on Magic FM with Harriet Scott – accumulating the highest ratings ever in Magic Radio history.
Over the past 12 months Ronan has been tirelessly working on an album that celebrates an incredible solo career spanning two decades. He wants to acknowledge that he certainly doesn’t take this for granted: “There’s not a lot of artists that have been lucky enough to do 20 years and still be here.” There are even fewer who have matched a successful band career with a successful solo career.” He adds, “I’m very honoured to have had that, so I wanted to mark it with an album like this.”
So this is ‘Twenty Twenty’. The album eagerly awaited by Keating’s fans, who have grown up with him over the past 20 years. The album of Keating’s adult life.
Dürtbürd four-piece ‘dürtrock’ band hailing from Leixlip. Dürtbürd’s latest live video/single ‘Priestiality’ was due to be released pre-Covid, but was eventually recorded and filmed alongside other new tracks during lockdown at the bands individual Houses/Studios. ‘Priestiality’ is the fourth in a series of live singles that Dürtbürd have recorded and self-released since their formation in 2019, with more songs to come very soon. Engineered by Producer/Bassist Johno and Filmed/Edited by Video-Mastermind/Singer Jimmy; Dürtbürd’s previous 3 live self-releases have garnered over 180k views on Facebook so far.
‘Priestiality’ is also available for stream and download from Spotify and all major music peddlers.
Dürdbürd on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/0YsQI7S0wSijhlS5ApPI48?si=rVryz5R6R9WOAxrflr-f2A
Jailbreak Film Productions are delighted to announce another festival selection for “Open Mic Dublin – The Movie”. This independent documentary will be screened at the YoFi MicroFest Irish Cinema Showcase 2020 in Yonkers New York, July 18th and 19th.
This documentary is the result of a two-year comprehensive examination of the artists, hosts and the originator of the open mic scene in Dublin. The stories are great, the talent astounding and the origins from 25 years ago is a surprise and delight. The film is awash with revealing interviews and superb music and poetry, captured live. You will hear the stories of the dynamic hosts who’s dedication provides a weekly platform to a multitude of burgeoning talent. From the 20+ artists featured you will get a deep insight into their motivations, varied experiences and sample their beautiful art.
Films like this help cement the love of Irish culture in America and since the film contains all contemporary artists performing all new music and poetry it also up-dates the understanding of that culture. Art in Ireland is a constantly evolving thing and is something that we should never stop shouting about. This will be the third US film festival for “Open Mic Dublin – The Movie” showing the talent and beautiful art of Ireland’s musicians and poets, and indeed some non-native artists who have immersed themselves in the scene since moving here.
Cronin announce ‘A View From The Next Room’. Out July 3rd on Gentlemen Recordings & Live Transmission Records. The brand-new album delivers the band’s most experimental and diverse set of songs to date. It was recorded at Transmission Rooms Recording Studio in Longford, Ireland. Following their work on Cronin’s critically acclaimed debut album ‘The First Kiss Of Love’, Karl Odlum (Glen Hansard, The Frames), Ger McDonnell (U2, Manic Street Preachers) and Mick Cronin return as producers. Cronin have also brought in outside instrumentalists and special guests like The Waterboys, whose violinist Steve Wickham features on two tracks. In addition, Damien Rice cello player Vivienne Long features on new track ‘Tell Me That You Want Me’ and Terry Edwards (PJ Harvey, Gallon Drunk) on the remix of ‘Little London’. Across the album’s six interrogative tracks the band displays inspired lyrics, deep orchestral arrangements and lifting hooks.
New single ‘Several Perceptions’ comes alongside a music video of the band performing the song in the studio.
On the making of ‘A View From The Next Room’, Mick Cronin says:
“Some of these mixes have been about for some time and others are relatively fresh. With us unable to work in the studio we thought now would be a good time to release these as a mini album. It’s a diverse mix compared to our releases so far, it shows another side of what we have in our heads.”
The album title is a reference to the Henry Scott Holland poem Death is nothing at all.
“Death is nothing at all. It does not count. I have only slipped away into the next room. Nothing has happened. Everything remains exactly as it was.”
For the album artwork, the band enlisted DJ, photographer and Oasis brother Paul Gallagher.
For musicians, there’s no way out. Like Michael Corleone in The Godfather movies, some pull away from the centre of what they love doing, but then they’re dragged back towards it –kicking and screaming, perhaps, but always because there’s nothing they can do about it. Instinct connects. It takes over. They capitulate and then triumph because the music they make synchronizes with a united mindset. That’s the way it is for Dublin-based band My Sweet Beloved, whose debut single, ‘The Invitation’, has just been released.
‘The Invitation’ (the first track taken from their forthcoming self-titled debut album) sees My Sweet Beloved merge the intensity of a fever dream with the kind of subtle, sultry pop smarts you thought had gone to Hell in a handcart. With brooding, atmospheric textures seemingly conjured out of the ether, the song (and album) is the cumulation of many months of artistic endeavour and some years of collective experience. The voice of Danielle Harrison Byrne (ex-Skindive) floats on music activated by musicians Derek Byrne (Autumn Owls), Anton Hegarty (Future Kings of Spain, A Lazarus Soul) and Dan Devlin (Moskowitz).
When Skindive split up some years ago, Danielle – who arrived in Dublin from Los Angeles specifically to join the band – knew her true voice hadn’t yet been revealed. When that band fell apart, she was, she remarks, “a singer with no songs”, yet the determination to match her creative vision with her vocal skills never wavered. Slowly, assuredly, one song followed another. The process was painstaking yet precise, the lessons learned invaluable.
The forthcoming album, says Danielle, is the result of a, “long journey that I am now able to fully appreciate.” With producer/musician Les Keye, Danielle produced and mixed the new album, her vision of what she wanted in perfect alignment with what she knew her bandmates could instinctively deliver. Call it fate, but for My Sweet Beloved the stars have arranged themselves in such a way (it might well be in the shape of an arrow pointing directly at you) that ‘The Invitation’ is one you can’t refuse.