Key Notes - an Irish music blog by Steven O'Rourke

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Key Notes: Random Notes

Oct 6

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Tuesday, October 06, 2009  RssIcon

 A blog of random items to make up for not being here for a while.

Key Notes Returns To College
Key Notes has had an interesting couple of weeks.  For a start, I'm now a full time student again.  I started my Masters in Journalism last week and, so far, it's pretty much everything I was hoping it would be.  Shorthand is tough, especially for someone who doesn't write in a cursive script to start with, but aside from that, Key Notes is sure he's made the right decision career/life wise.

Marathon Preparations
Those of you who follow this blog will know that I am currently training for the Adidas Dublin City Marathon on October 26.  In preparation for this I recently ran the Adidas Dublin Half Marathon with my mother (aw bless).  While my time was nothing to write home about, she managed to finish 111 out of over 1,000 in her category and raise lots of funds for charity at the same time so kudos where it is due.  I will be blogging about my marathon exploits closer to the date, and looking for sponsorship, so watch out.

Hot Press Music Show
Key Notes attended this weekend's Hot Press Music Show in the RDS (thanks Greeny!) and was pleased to see the amount of young people there.  When I was growing up in Kildare, music shops were at a premium and access to musical instruments and teachers usually came through school.  With an event like the Music Show, kids of all ages can fall in love with real instruments (as opposed to Guitar Hero, which, while having some entertainment value, has the potential to kill music).  The Music Show also exposes kids of all ages to some of the topics currently being debated in the world of music.  Illegal downloading was, once again, the hot potato, but there was also a particularly interesting debate on songwriting as a business, a subject that gets Key Notes wound up in all sorts of ways.  In my world, music should be considered art, not a business.  Why is that such a lofty ideal?

Two Bands Key Notes Would Recommend
At the Music Show, Key Notes heard two bands whose music he hadn't really paid much attention to before.  The first band, OnOff, won a competition to open the gig section of the event.  I saw this band once before and, quite frankly, didn't think very much.  However, they are now one member lighter and sound a great deal better for it.  There is an edge to this band that a lot of established bands would kill for.  Their music (balls out rock) might not be to everyone's taste but, if they could tone down on the swagger just a little, they is a great deal of potential.

The second band, and one that Key Notes is now very excited by, is Bipolar Empire.  One reason why this band caught my attention is that it would be difficult to pin a specific sound or genre on this band.  It was at times melodic, rock, soul and even blues and all played around songs of a very high standard.  Even more impressive was their vocalist, whose range was amazing considering it was only lunchtime.  Well worth checking out.

Villagers Sign To Domino
Congratulations to Villagers who have recently signed to Domino (Franz Ferdinand, Arctic Monkeys, The Kills).  Couldn't happen to a better band.  Make sure you check them out at Hard Working Class Heroes 2009 (more on this later in the week).  For now though, any excuse to play this:

Villagers: The Meaning of the Ritual

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