Saturday 3 December 2016

Music: Feel that you own it by Bipolar Empire * * *

Published 29/04/2011 | 05:00

Predicting success -- success measured in album sales and sold-out shows, that is -- is a mug's game. But it would take a brave soul indeed not to wager on Bipolar Empire following fellow Dubliners The Script into the big league.

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Everything about this debut album points to a band gunning for the big time. There are several unashamedly mass-market, radio-friendly hits and the overall sound has been honed for arenas (REM's studio boffin of choice, Pat McCarthy, is on production).

Furthermore, the quartet have enjoyed some handy leg-ups in the form of 2FM's TV ad campaign (first single Tempomanic soundtracks the eye-catching commercial) and a striking video staring Olympic boxing hopeful Katie Taylor and directed by promo king Kevin Godley (for latest single Feel That You Own It).

U2 and Muse provide obvious influences -- see what I mean about thinking big? -- and, for the most part, this is slickly executed meat-and-two-veg rock.

Do not approach this band in the hope of hearing anything remotely left-field, although Shane O'Reilly's quavering vocals do take some time to come around to.

In places, their epic ambitions lead to over-wrought music and their prosaic lyrics can grate horribly (granted, they're not long out of their teens), but this is a band to watch.

Burn it: Tempomanic; Feel That You Own It

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