Entries for 'Alan Morrissey'

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15
Pony Club
Despite the fact that nearly every Irish music lover knows their name, and probably has a copy of a Pony Club record lying around somewhere, this band have remained sadly in the background of the Irish music scene. Yet with a brand new album just released, Pony Club are ready to inch that little bit further toward fame. CLUAS writer Alan Morrissey caught up with Mark Cullen from the band. Are you happy with how Post Romantic turned out? I think so, I'm terrible in the studio, I'm always trying to change things up to the very last minute, it usually drives the producer and engineer mad, and I always record more songs than I need just in case I don't like how something turns out. I only ever listen to the final mix and then I never play the record again, probably because small things grate on me, things that nobody else can hear. So yeah I'm thrilled with it, I think . You started the album back in 2006 but a number of things, including your wife being ill, m... [Read on]
Posted in: Interviews
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06
Wildbirds & Peacedrums 'Heartcore'
Review Snapshot:  In terms of 'stripping it down' The White Stripes have nothing on Wildbirds & Peacedrums. Their concoction of enchanting vocals and variable drum sounds proves to be a unique listening experience. With minimal embellishment ( a double-tracked vocal here, a hint of glockenspiel there), Heartcore's fusion of swampblues, folk, rock and numerous other genres provides the year's most unexpected highlight to date. The Cluas Verdict? 8 out of 10 Full Review:  They say good things come to those who wait and in the case of the unfortunately named Wildbirds & Peacedrums it may well be true for all of us. Heartcore, the 2007 debut release from Swedish couple Marian Wallentin and Andreas Werliin, is winging its way to our stereos just as their sophomore album The Snake comes out in their homeland. Wildbirds & Peacedrums left music college as they deemed its teachings to be 'too rigid' and on this evidence it... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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26
The Boggs 'Forts'
Review of The Boggs' album 'Forts' Review Snapshot: The sound of countless acts flows through the veins of the latest release from sometime Liar Jason Friedman, but no one utilises them in the same inventive way. This is a sonic brew, mixing ingredients of highlights from the last decade of music with the sheer irrepressible energy of The Boggs collective. The Cluas Verdict? 8 out of 10 Full Review: The new rock revolution (TM) which was ushered in at the dawn of the millennium saw some fresh life breathed into a music scene bloated from dining out on unpalatable Nu-Metal. The likes of The Strokes, The White Stripes and their like brought some much needed vitality without doing anything new. As the years have rolled by and The Rapture (sometime tourmates of The Boggs) and Bloc Party have come and gone, it's clear that they're tapping into a period of music (1977-1981) and taking all the style, but none of the substance. ... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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26
Cass McCombs 'Dropping The Writ'
A review of Cass McCombs album 'Dropping The Writ' Review Snapshot: Cass McCombs' career up to now may point to someone whose attention span never focuses on one place, or thing, for too long. Thankfully this doesn't apply to his new record. 'Dropping The Writ' is a fantastic ragbag of various styles and influences, but they're all blended together to create a collection that is unique and deserves to be heard by a wider audience. The Cluas Verdict?  8 out of 10 Full Review: Music lovers tend to appreciate when their favourite artists invest a little bit of their life story into their work.Think of Leonard Cohen recounting his numerous romantic encounters at the Chelsea Hotel, or Bob Dylan soundtracking a marriage on the precipice on 'Blood On The Tracks' for examples of music that touched the listener because they conveyed the kind of real life drama everyone can empathise with. Californian troubadour Cass ... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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03
Review Snapshot:   At many points throughout 'The Sentinel' Swedish post rock merchants Aerial threaten to join the heirarchy of post rock, yet a lack of clarity and the vision to take a song to the next level leave them floundering in the 'what might have been' category. There are plenty of great moments for sure, but it becomes clearer as each track goes by that no song will take the necessary step that will mark them out as extraordinary. Instead the majority of the songs fizzle out with endings that are interchangeable with any other song on the album.   The CLUAS Verdict?  6.5 out of 10  Full Review: In the last decade or so 'post rock' has become the most critically lauded musical genre of them all. Certainly, it has been the most uber-hip outpost on the musical landscape, with many of the major players enjoying as much success as is possible for groups who play, for the most part, awkward, mostly instrumental, ... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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04
Neil Young 'Live At Massey Hall'
Review Snapshot: The second disc to be released from his Archives file, this live set, captured in front of an adoring crowd in Toronto in 1971, shows Neil Young on top of his game. With a set containing material from his first two albums, as well as songs from the (at the time) upcoming 'Harvest', Young proves that he's unrivalled in his ability to engage with an audience in an acoustic setting. A magical live album.  The CLUAS Verdict? 8.5 out of 10 Full Review: The release last year of 'Live At The Fillmore East' provided the first tangible evidence that Neil Young might just follow through on his long held promise to release his mammoth Archives project. Now further proof has arrived in the shape of 'Live At Massey Hall 1971'. This live set captures Young in what may well be the most creatively fertile period of his long career. The past year had seen him take massive strides with 'After The Goldrush', as well as a diverti... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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01
Josh Ritter 'The Historical Conquests Of'
Review Snapshot: He may be a shining light in an overcrowded Irish singer-songwriter scene, but this album finds Josh Ritter failing to take the leap forward that his fans might have hoped for. Though there are certainly enough moments to suggest that he may make a record to deserve the increased attention he is receiving in the US, too many average songs ensure that this record is not it. The Cluas Verdict? 5.5 out of 10 Full Review:  The last couple of years have been a series of ups and downs for Idaho native Josh Ritter. His last album, The Animal Years, which saw him tackle the political situation in the US, moved him further up the ranks in the Irish singer-songwriter scene into which he has been adopted, as well as coming to the attention of the likes of Bruce Springsteen. Unfortunately, the very night he performed on the Letterman Show to promote that album his label, V2, collapsed, leaving him to evaluate his next move. The Historical Conquests Of finds... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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01
Levy 'Glorious'
Review Snapshot: This melodically ambitious record from former anti-folker shows plenty of scope in relation to the presentation of the songs, yet is let down by repetition of production techniques. Despite this 'Glorious' shows plenty of promise. The CLUAS Verdict? 7 out of 10 Full Review: "Always look on the bright side of life", the Monty Python crew advised on their wonderfully upbeat ditty, words that New York's James Levy appears to have taken to heart on his new album. Though his day job may be filling out burial forms for Jewish cemeteries, Levy maintains a positive outlook, as evidenced by the title track which opens the record. "God bless the world, it's glorious" goes the chorus and as an opening statement of intent it's pretty impressive; full of strings, jangly guitars and an 80s style sheen which veers towards the epic. While he may have made his name as part of the anti-folk movement (Moldy Peaches et al) Levy ste... [Read on]
Posted in: Album reviews
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