Last week there was an open call for the Other Voices IMRO Other Room. I thought it would be fun to turn our rehearsal into a live recording of a new song as a submission. So, my brothers Kevin and Eoin came up from Sligo to shoot us in Billy's place. We set up quickly and did a couple of takes. One mic, two cameras. I'm very happy with it as we don't have many live recordings of Nocturnes and there was a lovely natural energy and momentum in the evening.
Big thanks to Billy, Niamh and Séamus for allowing us to turn their house into a makeshift studio and to Kevin and Eoin for doing the visuals so well.
We will release the studio recording of the song before the year is out.
In the meantime, our next stop is Nighthawks at Cobalt Café on October 7th.
Be sure to see the flowers,
Remember blogs? I used to post blogs on MySpace quite frequently but the instant-hit of posts on social media seems to have replaced such missives.
So, I'm going to write about playlists which, with the growth of streaming services like Spotify, seem to be on the increase. There are downsides to this. Recording artists love to produce albums. Every year the Choice Music Prize in Ireland highlights the great number of albums produced in Ireland alone. The album occupies a similar mileu to the feature length movie from a filmmaker or to the exhibition from the visual artist. And similarly to these mediums the album allows its creator room and space to explore a particular mood, theme or notion. It's a spacious form and in its best incarnation, carefully constructed. So is it sacrilege to pull these works apart, to cherrypick the best tracks? I don't think that it is. I like playlists.
Playlisting, to me, allows tracks to exist within a new context which can breathe fresh life into a song. I used to work on Raidió na Life in Dublin where I had a show called 'An Uair Dhraiochta'. I produced the programme for years in a voluntary capacity. As the show aired on a Sunday evening, I tended to play mellow, atmospheric tracks and I grew a bit of a knack for playlisting. I enjoyed finding new music and meeting new bands who, like myself, wanted to connect with people who loved music, and who hopefully appreciated their music too. So, putting together a playlist for my Spotify profile, which I entitled 'Nocturnal Listening: Ambience & Atmosphere'. I started off with artists like Massive Attack, Max Richter, Lisa Hannigan and Chihei Hatakeyma, artists who in some way touched off or inspired my own work. And when I placed my own songs from Idiot Songs & Nocturnes in the playlist I was really pleased to find that they sat alongside these pieces really nicely, it was a playlist I myself would enjoy! So, I felt pretty proud about that, proud of the songs me and Enda Roche in Nocturnes and my collaborator Justin Grounds in Idiot Songs have produced over the last number of years.
You can keep an eye on the playlist below. I'll keep changing it and adding to it.
This amazing video is a portrait of my father Páraic and was created by my brother Kevin. I composed the music for it, a piece called 'Fireweight'.