Thursday 18 December 2014

Loaded: 19/12/2008

Published 19/12/2008 | 00:00

GOOD LUCK: Jape supporters are leading a campaign to get his song Phil Lynott to beat X Factor to the Christmas No1 spot

A petition seeking the return of Night Shift, the late-night Channel 6 music video show presented by the popular Michelle Doherty, has been doing the rounds of late. TV3, which has just taken over the small network, is axing the programme.

A number of local musicians have signed www.ipetitions.com/petition/ bringbacknightshift, including one-half of local hip-hop outfit Messiah J and The Expert and singer-songwriter Nina Hynes, who's been plying her trade in Berlin of late. Both of them cite the show's support for emerging Irish musicians and there have been over 350 signatories to date.

I can't help but feel that the gesture will be utterly ignored by TV3, who have suddenly taken an interest in home-produced shows after years of regurgitating US fare. Let's be blunt here -- a show based around music videos showing leftfield indie and local offerings has an extremely limited audience and any TV network in the ratings game knows that.

Still, as many of the respondents point out, Night Shift is the best home-produced thing on Channel 6. But then, competition isn't exactly tough on a station best known for its re-runs of the US Office. Only no-budget film show Take Six springs to mind, and it's harder to imagine a more vacuous entertainment show than that.

n Another campaign unlikely to have any impact whatsoever is an online attempt to have Jape's excellent Phil Lynnot single hit the Christmas number-one spot in Ireland.

It's a lovely idea and in an ideal world the song would upset the mincepie cart and sit pretty on top of the charts come December 25.

But that's not going to happen because Alexandra Burke, who won The X Factor at the weekend, is almost certain to be there with her karaoke version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah. It has already sold 500,000 copies on pre-order .

Still, romantics out there can try to prevent this travesty by downloading the Jape single, which is released today. Simply Google 'Jape' and 'Phil Lynott' for further info.

Jape fans should not underestimate the strength of the under-10 market, who no doubt will have used all the pester power available to them to ensure that Alexandra's murdering of a modern classic is one of the bestselling tracks in years.

Pre-teens were polled earlier this week about who the most famous person on the planet is and, quelle surprise, Simon Cowell -- The X Factor overlord -- comes out on top. God didn't do quite as well in the poll, coming in at number two, which gave headline writers the world over the obvious eye-catcher about Cowell being bigger than you know who. Louis Walsh, we hear, is still smarting over the result.

n It would be quite easy for anyone to assume that Humanzi are no more. Actually, let's backtrack. I should probably remind you that Humanzi are an Irish band who signed a major record deal, talked the talk but didn't exactly walk the walk and were the cover 'stars' on the first issue of the hopeless NME Ireland ...

Anyhoo, Humanzi are still a going concern and have apparently been working on album number two. They will be showcasing new material in a gig on New Year's Eve at Tripod, which will be followed by the popular indie disco, Antics.

It will be interesting to see what the band have learned from their all- too-brief stint in the spotlight.

n Often the weight of expectation can crush a gig. TV on the Radio -- who were responsible for my second favourite album of the year (see page 14) -- were very disappointing when they played Dublin's Tripod last month.

Happily, Glasvegas -- another band behind one of the year's great albums -- delivered a stunning set in the city's Academy venue on Sunday night. They played for just 45 minutes, but every single one of their songs was brilliantly executed. Best of all was the way they reinvented Stabbed -- the spoken-word album track that's set to the music of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata. Frontman James Allan half sung/ half spoke the vocals and his equally intense bandmates created a jagged wall of noise.

It paid to get there early because support band White Lies delivered a short but blistering set. Their debut album, To Lose My Life, is set for release on Universal offshoot Fiction in mid-January and, on the evidence of this performance, it's an album that will be well worth checking out.

Everybody seemed to enjoy themselves hugely, including Johnny Vegas, who was in attendance.

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