posted on August 04, 2009 08:32
Day Two of Castlepalooza 2009
Review Snapshot: The expected rain finally hit Castlepalooza on Sunday, though it did little to dampen spirits that were still high from the day before, while the second day saw some of the best performances of the weekend.
The Cluas Verdict? 7 out of 10
The Hot Sprockets, mostly dull though they were, had one gift: the ability to make the crowd forget that the rain had begun. Having paid far too much attention to the style and music of early Kings of Leon (the hairy days), they are nevertheless one of the few bands in Ireland at the moment whose main ethos is good naturedness and fun, making their show pretty enjoyable if not groundbreaking. In fact, they probably couldn’t be more different from the band that followed in the HMV tent: the quite frankly bizarre Patrick Kelleher and His Cold Dead Hands. Dark, strange, and accompanied by a table of electronic instruments and gadgets – and an accordion – Patrick Kelleher and his band give the impression of people who have spent too much time together in a small room with little contact with the outside world. That doesn’t make them any less brilliant, his strange gothic-tinged music beautiful.
Sandwiched between Kelleher and Le Galaxie were the 202s, another band who made use of electronic backing tracks, though unlike Skibunny, they at least had the ability to capitalise on them. The 202’s are all catchy songs and varying sounds, and one to keep an eye on. Le Galaxie, as ever, proved themselves one of the strongest live forces doing the Dublin circuit at the moment. Their sound may be all power, created by discrete layers, but their strength really lies in their ability to interact with the crowd, at once terrifying the people in the front row by practically jumping on top of them and involving those at the back. The combined energy of any of the bands on Castlepalooza’s first day was nothing compared with the buzz from the crowd in the HMV tent for those 40 minutes.
The Chapters...well, the Chapters were alright, it's difficult to say much more than that. Inexplicably, the songs on their album, released earlier this year, are already beginning to sound dated, but unlike most acts over the weekend, the majority of their audience at least knew the songs. Robotnik, also on the Main Stage, proved to be my final act of the night, and though followed by Channel One and Noise Control, made a fantastic closing act. Though visibly nervous and unused to the imposed distance between himself and the audience, Chris Morrin quickly warmed to the situation, immersing himself in his usual antics and bizarre stage behaviour, including pelting the audience with bread during a version of Pat the Baker. To merely say Robotnik is quirky is to sell short his ability to entertain, entrance and of course create great music, strange though it might be.