Critic's guide to going out: 13/08/2010
Konono No.1, SetT heatre, Kilkenny
Any band whose name translates as 'assume crash position' is worth a gander in our opinion. Well, that's apparently exactly what 'konono' means in the band's native Kikongo tongue, and they're certainly up for a musical riot. Mixing traditional Congolese instruments such as the likembe with everything from kitchen pots and pans to car parts, Konono No. 1 take their traditional folk roots and feed them into their idiosyncratic, scrap-metal sound system. The raw, pulsing results are like nothing else in African music. And this explains why the band have been feted by everyone from Thom Yorke to Beck and guested on albums by Bjork and Herbie Hancock. Be prepared to shake your fine thang, as this is one band that will have you grooving.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 14
And So I Watch You From Afar, Set Theatre, Kilkenny
The Kilkenny Arts Festival is keeping the spotlight firmly focused on the Marble City this weekend. And this Saturday-night headline slot in the Set Theatre promises to be quite the stomping affair as Belfast’s And So I Watch You From Afar (ASIWYFA to those in the know) take to the stage. This Belfast-based instrumental band stole the spotlight from major headliners at last year’s Electric Picnic and were one of the most talked about Irish bands at SXSW this year, thanks to their electrifying live performances. So this could well be one of your last chances to catch them in such an intimate setting before they storm the big stages. And the band will be followed by a DJ set by one of the most cracking DJs in town, The Kilo 1977, so named because he was apparently the fattest baby in town when he was born, you’ve guessed it, in 1977. If that wasn’t enough, by day,The Kilo 1977 is also the local milkman. Now that’s class.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 15
Tindersticks,St Canice’s Cathedral, Kilkenny
In the music industry equivalent of a free transfer, David Kitt has signed up for an open-ended stint with tweedy moochers Tindersticks. It's all part of the band's new open-door policy. Having spent a decade swimming in ever decreasing circles, singer Stuart Staples and guitarist David Boulter decided Tindersticks 2.0 had to be a very different beast if it was to prosper. Hence ongoing cameos from Kittser and horn player Adrian Denning and, on new album, Falling Down A Mountain, an unexpectedly propulsive new sound. Still, it's 90s weepies such as Marbles and City Sickness that will really hit you in the gut as Tindersticks grace the rococo splendour of St Canice's.
MONDAY, AUGUST 16
The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, General Release
Nicolas Cage apparently came up with the concept for this action fantasy romp and also stars. And, while far from perfect, The Sorcerer's Aprentice is by no means the worst blockbuster you'll see this summer. Cage is Balthazar Blake, a magician from the time of King Arthur who has arrived in modern day New York to search for a 'Prince Merlinian' who will be powerful enough to combat the evil sorceress Morgana, who for reasons that are never specified wishes to destroy the earth. Balthazar has a hard time convincing young science student Dave Stutler (Jay Baruchel) that he's the chosen one, but when he's attacked by rival magicians, Dave begins to think there may be something in it. With Monica Bellucci, Alfred Molina, Teresa Palmer, Alice Krige.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 17
Vincent River, Project Arts Centre, Dublin2
Davey and Anita were always destined to meet. He's a teenager who saw something that he just can't forget. She's a middle-aged woman forced to flee her flat, the home she's lived in all her adult life. Both of them perfect strangers ... until today. Today these two disparate lives will be connected forever by a dark secret -- the secret of Vincent River. Philip Ridley's intense two-hander pits a troubled mother who has lost her son to a homophobic hate crime against the damaged young soul who discovered the body. The result is a powerful tale of love, loss and the meandering road to redemption. It is presented here by Belfast's Prime Cut Productions in association with Belfast Pride Festival and directed by one of the hottest talents on the block, Sophie Motley.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 18
Lithos, Monster Truck Gallery, Temple Bar, Dublin2
Lithography may not be something you come across in your daily life, so just in case you were wondering what exactly it is, it's a method of printing that uses a stone (lithographic limestone) or a metal plate with completely smooth surface. Invented in 1795 by Bavarian author Alois Senefelder as a cheaper way to publish theatrical works, it is now usually used as an artistic medium. School lesson out of the way, there's a cracking exhibition of lithography currently on show at the Monster Truck Gallery in Temple Bar, thanks to the Black Church Print Studio. The three artists involved are America's John Pusateri and Ben Moreau and Britain's Jessica Harrison, who is of particular interest. Check out her piece Fingerprint, which is like a disturbing Escher work of interweaving detached fingers that somehow resemble floating cherubs. Oo-er.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 19
Surveillance, Centre for Creative Practices, Dublin2
Where were you today? Who did you talk to? What did you buy? And who was watching, or listening, or recording? Surveillance is the title and the theme of Canada-born photographer Erin Quinn's new exhibition, at the new Centre for Creative Practices on Pembroke St in Dublin. Over the past two years, Quinn has trained her lens on unwitting passengers and passers-by at Dublin Airport, replicating the perspective of the CCTV camera. Inspired by both Michel Foucault and George Orwell, she asks whether the constant surveillance that is part and parcel of today's society has unwitting, insidious social effects. "Just when does the observation we allow to protect ourselves become the very thing we need to protect ourselves from?" Her images are as unsettling as they are beautiful. And you never know -- you might be in one of them.