Loaded: Moving debut from the late Clancy
Road to the Heart makes for an emotive listen when you know its back story. The debut album from the late Paul Clancy (below), it's an accomplished, meditative collection that was sure to raise Paul's profile.
As the drummer of Dublin indie band National Prayer Breakfast, Clancy was already a well-known figure on the domestic music scene, but this album showed that he was a talented singer-songwriter as well as a fine percussionist.
A psychotherapist by profession, he had begun promotional work on the album when he died suddenly last month. He was just 35.
Kev Connolly, who makes music under the Herm moniker, co-wrote and co-recorded the Clancy album. He said: "We are going to go ahead with the album launch and promotion, as we would very much like to get Paul's beautiful music to as many people as possible and to continue the work that he had started and that we were all enjoying so much."
Road to the Heart is available now on the Catchy Go Go label. Paul's music can also be heard on myspace.com/clancysongs and youtube.com/user/pauloclancy
- South by Southwest has grown from humble beginnings into the world's biggest music showcase. Over the course of a week, some 2,000 bands ply their trade in Austin, Texas, and the hype merchants have a field day. Consider the breathless prose that emanates from SXSW each year about bands that really don't deserve of such praise: stand up Tapes 'n' Tapes.
This year, 19 Irish acts will be hoping to get noticed and good luck to them all. Those keen to find out how they get on and who's being tipped for greatness should tune into Jenny Huston's 2fm show at 9pm tonight and tomorrow. The DJ is promising interviews, sessions, live performances and "buzz from one of the coolest music festivals in the world".
- Music lovers in Cork are in for a very special night on Friday, June 25, with the inaugural Harmonic event. Two of the US's finest bands, Grizzly Bear (in what is being described as their only Irish show of 2010) and Midlake, will perform in the Marquee by the banks of the Lee with support from Scotland's excellent Camera Obscura and the most-hyped Irish outfit of the past 12 months, Villagers.
"Harmonic," according to the bumf, "was put together by Aiken Promotions and independent promoter Leagues O'Toole, with a view to forming a mass gathering of independent music lovers in Cork city". Tickets cost €35 and go on sale at 9am today.
Villagers, meanwhile, have announced a release date for their debut album, Becoming a Jackal -- it will be out in Ireland on 14 May with Irish headline dates the following week in Kilkenny, Galway, Cork and Dublin. The first single, also called Becoming a Jackal, will be released on 7in for Record Store Day on April 17 and digitally on April 26.
- Am I the only one who thinks The Doors were the most over-rated band of all time? Thought not. But anybody who feels like me is going to have to get used to a glut of Doors-related events over the coming months.
First up, in April, is a feature-length documentary called When You're Strange. It is narrated by Johnny Depp, whose most recent music contribution was playing guitar in Shane McGowan's Haiti charity single and Screamin' Jay Hawkins cover I Put A Spell On You.
Then, on Saturday, July 17, the last remaining members of the music's druggiest-sounding band -- Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger -- will play Dublin's spanking new Grand Canal Theatre, which opened its doors for the first time yesterday. The 50-strong Lombard Philharmonic Orchestra will join Manzarek and Krieger in Dublin. Quite what Jim Morrison -- who died in July 1971 -- would make of The Doors 2010 is anyone's guess. Tickets cost a wallet-busting €66.50.