Published 10/10/2008 | 09:42
Bell X1 have revealed guitarist Brian Crosby will leave the band at the end of their current Flock tour. It seems Crosby had been going his own way for some time, busying himself with music projects for television, radio and producing other bands' albums (most recently One Day International's latest, Blackbird); he is leaving the band to concentrate more on this work.
The decision all sounds very amicable, with both Crosby and Bell X1 singer Paul Noonan releasing mutually appreciative statements. Crosby said: "It's an extraordinary privilege to be in a band with your mates for more than 15 years. It's been particularly wonderful to have connected with so many people and to have got to meet people all over the world doing what I love.
"I look forward to continue making those connections. At the same time, I'll be applauding the band's continued success."
Paul Noonan, the band's lead singer, was equally Miss World-esque in his statement, saying, "We've grown up making music together and will of course miss Brian in all of the areas that he drove things. The band has become a hub from which many other projects have sprung over the past few years, which is a very healthy thing I think -- it's been great to explore other areas of music.
"I know his voice will continue to reach people, and I'm sure we'll work together again in some shape or form."
Bell X1 fans can rest assured, however, as the band plan to bring in a new member for live performances and will play an acoustic autumn tour as a three-piece to showcase songs from their forthcoming album, beginning in Cork on October 21 and culminating with three Vicar Street nights in November, on Tuesday 11, Wednesday 12 and Thursday 13.
n Indie boys-turned-stadium rockers Snow Patrol have announced a mini-marathon tour to celebrate the launch of their new album, A Hundred Million Suns. Their fifth album and follow-up to 2006's million-selling Eyes Open is released on Friday, October 24. The pitstop tour of four cities in two days will take in Dublin and Belfast on Sunday, October 26, and then Edinburgh and London on October 27.
The gigs will take place in venues handpicked by the band to showcase the new album in an intimate setting (the Dublin gig will take place in the Gate Theatre and the Belfast gig in the Empire), which is a nice way of getting around Dublin's limitations when it comes to fancy mid-size venues.
Tickets are limited to the Snow Patrol fanclub, so those fair-weather fans amongst you will have to wait for the muddy field or the stadium. Tickets will be distributed via a lottery through the band's mailing list and those fans who do get their hands on a golden ticket will also get a live CD of the show they attend, so they can relive the moment.
n More than half the tickets for next year's Glastonbury have already been snapped up. The tickets went on sale last Sunday and, despite the fact that fans won't know who is headlining the concert until early next year, half of the 137,500 tickets were sold within hours.
Emily Eavis, festival co-organiser and daughter of Glastonbury founder Michael Eavis, said of next year's festival headliners, "It's not Coldplay, it's not U2 and it's not the Rolling Stones". Should be a good festival then.
n Omaha five-piece Tilly And The Wall release their new album O on Monday, on the Moshi Moshi label. The band earned fans here over the last two years with their eccentric (some might say shambolic) live shows, supporting bands like CSS and Bright Eyes.
Their gigs, which included a tap-dancer-as-drummer, were always a spectacular riot of colour and sound, if not always perfectly executed. O is their third album and is produced by Omaha indie kingpin Mike Mogis (he of Bright Eyes fame). O comes after four years on the road and is so far being described as a suitably eclectic album, ranging from psychedelic to dirty blues.
n Blur fans may have got a little over-excited when they heard rumours that bassist Alex James is to release a new version of Blue Monday. Sadly, this is not a rendition of the classic New Order hit, but the name James has given to his new cheese. The Blur bassist has worked as a cheesemaker on his farm in the Cotswolds since 2003.
I have a feeling Blue Monday will be a big, if smelly, hit.
n If you were one of the many guilty pleasure-seekers following the reality TV show, Last Choir Standing, you may like to catch one of the world's best choirs, Polyphony, when they perform in St Patrick's Dundalk on October 25. The choir will perform as part of John Tavener's Temenos festival, a celebration of John Tavener's music, who is probably best known for his Song For Athene which was performed at the funeral of Princess Diana in 1997 and will also be performed in Dundalk on the night. For more information, see www.louthcms.org. n