The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011

Entries for 'Steven O'Rourke'

My Jerusalem 'Gone for Good'
A review of the album 'Gone for Good' by My Jerusalem Review Snapshot: The critic in me has heard it all before but the music fan doesn't care making Gone for Good a rather perplexing ...

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Villagers 'Becoming A Jackal'
A review of the album Becoming A Jackal by Villagers Review Snapshot: Despite the huge weight of expectation, Conor O'Brien delivers possibly the finest Irish record you'll hear this year ...

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C O D E S (live in the Academy, Dublin)
C O D E S (live in the Academy, Dublin) Review Snapshot:  C O D E S show once again why they are one of Ireland's best, if not best, live acts. The Cluas Verdict? 9 out of 1...

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Pilotlight 'The Post War Musical'
A review of the album The Post War Musical by Pilotlight Review Snapshot: The Post War Musical is a beautiful debut record from an Irish band who have aren't afraid to explore old themes with ...

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As you've probably guessed from the blog title and, indeed, the summary,Steve this will be the final ever edition of Key Notes.  It might not be a huge surprise to those of you who follow this blog on a regular basis as the silence emanating from Key Note Towers over the past few weeks has been deafening.  Unfortunately, I totally underestimated how much time and effort a Masters would require and, while it would have been an easy decision to hold on to this blog and only update it once or twice per month, I think you, the Key Notes reader, deserves better. 

This blog set out to entertain and inform in equal measure and on a regular basis.  I hope that I have achieved that over the past two and a half years.  However, now that I can no longer provide you with a regular update, I feel the time is right to step aside and pave the way for a fresh voice from the CLUAS stable to provide you with their take on Ireland's indie music scene.  I can't reveal who that person is just now, but I hope that regular readers of Key Notes will support his replacement.

Before I go, I would like to thank Eoghan, who provided me with this excellent opportunity.  Sir, your guidance was one of the main reasons I took the plunge and decided to do my journalism Masters.  I would also like the thank my fellow CLUAS writers, especially those of you who took gig passes on short notice and were willing and able to publish reviews within 24 hours.  Unfortunately, my decision to step back from the site means that I will no longer be in charge of the distribution of gig passes but I'm sure Eoghan will direct you in the right direction soon.

I would also like to thank all the promoters, bands, managers and fans who I've had the pleasure of being in contact with over the past few years and who have pointed me in the direction of some excellent new Irish music.  I would especially like to thank (and wish them the best of luck in the future) all those involved with C O D E S, Dark Room Notes, Escape Act and the sadly departed Future Kings of Spain.

I'd better thank Mrs. Key Notes too.  Although, like Eoghan, it is partly Amy's fault that I can't continue with Key Notes as I doubt I'd be doing this Masters if it wasn't for her support.  Finally, I would like to you, the Key Notes reader, especially those of you on the Key Notes' mailing list.  I hope I have succeeded in my goal of entertaining and informing you over the past few years and that you appreciate difficult it was to come up with a new email title every time!

This won't be the last you hear from me on CLUAS.  I still hope to provide gig and album reviews as and when I can and I stand 100% behind this site and what it aims to achieve.

It's been emotional people.

C O D E S: This is Goodbye

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Yesterday, Monday 26 October 2009, this blog ran (and completed) its very first Marathon. It was a day of extreme highs and lows and one that I'll probably never forget.  I know for sure that my right knee won't let me forget anytime soon.

As I reached the start line at 8.30, the air was heavy with the smell of fear and deep heat.  Nervous pleasantries were exchanged between competitors amidst final stretches and photographs.  Everyone wanted to know what time everyone else wanted to achieve.  If I could do it in less that 4 hours, 30 minutes, I'd be very happy.  If I could somehow find the adrenalin to do it in less than four then I'd be ecstatic!  As the 9.00 start time approached, my emotions began to get the better of me, not because of the 26 miles, 385 yards ahead of me, but because of the hundreds of miles I'd put in beforehand and, of course, the very reason I was doing this in the first place, in memory of my Father-in-law, Alan Smyth.  

However, once the starting gun went all nerves quickly disappeared and I settled in to a nice pace of 9.30-9.45 minute miles for the first 5 miles.  It was hard not to think about the difference between the first time I attempted 5 miles, when I was sure I'd have to call some sort of cardiac ambulance, and today.  Indeed, miles 4-8, through the Phoenix Park, are perhaps the most fun I've ever had with my clothes on.  The colours of the trees, the enthusiastic crowds, the fact that I was, without very much effort, on course for possibly a 4 hour marathon added a spring to my step that made me feel like the greatest distance runner in the world.  

That being said, as good as I felt exiting the Chapelizod Gate, I realised that I wasn't sweating very much and so I took some time to load up on water and energy drinks at the next water station.  Mile 8 to 9, which included the impossibly steep St. Laurence Road, was by far the toughest of the race so far but as I made my way through miles 9-13 I seemed to get a second wind.  I was now running a pretty good pace and still had the 4 hour pace balloons in sight.

However, as I crossed the half way mark in 2 hours, 1 minute and 14 seconds, and began to dream of upping the pace and overtaking the pacemakers between miles 13-18 (and before I hit the dreaded wall), I heard what can only be described as a loud snap in my head and almost immediately came to a shuddering halt given the pain that was now emanating from my right knee. I couldn't believe it.  This was the same knee I suffered a grade 2 ACL tear in during training (causing me to miss 8 weeks in total) but which hadn't caused me any real trouble for over 6 weeks.  

I made my way as quickly as I could to the nearest first aid area where I was strongly advised to call it a day.  That was NEVER going to happen, not after coming this far.  The first aid guys applied as much deep freeze as they could before advising me one more time to consider leaving the race.  Stubbornly, I still refused, saying that I'd give it another couple of miles and see where it took me.  All in all, I spent over 21 minutes getting treatment and stretching and so any hope of a sub four hour marathon were well any truly gone.

Indeed, after about a mile of very light jogging I relalised that time was no longer an issue.  It was now all about ignoring the pain in my right knee (akin to replacing your knee joint with a testicle and running on it for 12 or so miles), and just finishing the race.  To be honest, I wasn't sure I could but as mile after mile passed by I could sense the finish line and that, plus a brilliantly supportive crowd, kept me going, even through miles 18-24 when I seemed to spend most of the time trying not to cry, both from the pain and the feeling that I'd let myself and others down because of this injury.

Somehow, and from somewhere, I picked up the courage to run, as fast as I could, the last 2 miles, 285 yards in the hope of finishing in less than 5 & a half hours.  Seeing Mrs Key Notes, her mum and my own Mum and Dad, as I struggled through the last mile, gave me a huge emotional and physical boost and as I crossed the line I was so overcome with the emotion of the whole experience that I almost, almost, forgot about the pain for a moment.  Officially, my time was 5.46.14 but, as I took 21 minutes out for treatment, I'm giving myself an unofficial time of 5.25.14.  

Not that it matters, of course, I finished a marathon, essentially on one leg, and that, as everyone has since told me, is all that really matters.  That and getting to the doctor today!

Should you wish to sponsor me, there is still time so please check out my MyCharity Page.

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Day Two Hard Working Class Heroes 2009
Oliver Cole, Escape Act & Others (live in Temple Bar, Dublin) Review Snapshot:  Day two of Hard Working Class Heroes involved quite a bit of venue shifting but was all the better for...

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Hard Working Class Heroes 2009 Day 1
Villagers, The Ambience Affair & Others (HWCH, live in Temple Bar, Dublin) Review Snapshot:   The Cluas Verdict? 8.5 out of 10 Full Review: While my intention had been...

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And so Dublin's most hectic, fun-filled, music weekend is finally upon us!  The full schedule for Hard Working Class Heroes 2009, details of which you can find below or on the HWCH website, has been announced.  

There are obviously a lot of great bands that one could see over the weekend but Key Notes will more than likely be found at the following:

Midatlantic - The Button Factory - 7.15-7.45
Theme Tune Boy - 4 Dame Lane - 8.15-8.45
Subplots - Andrew's Lane - 8.50-9.20
Here Come The Landed Gentry - Academy 2 - 9.30-10.00
The Ambience Affair - Andrew's Lane - 10.10-10.40
Villagers - Andrew's Lane - 11.00-12.00

Oliver Cole - The Button Factory - 7.10-7.40
Escape Act - 4 Dame Lane - 8.00-8.30
Cities - Twisted Pepper - 8.55-9.25
Holy Roman Army - Twisted Pepper - 9.35-10.05
Fionn Regan - Button Factory - 10.00-11.00

Pearse McLoughlin - The Button Factory - 7.30-8.00
Biggles Flies Again - Academy 2 - 8.10-8.40
Robotnik - Andrew's Lane - 9.00-9.30
Tidal District - Academy 2 - 9.30-10.00
The Angel Pier - Button Factory - 10.15-11.00
202's - Andrew's Lane - 11.05-11.35
Super Extra Bonus Party - Andrew's Lane - 11.50 - 12.30

Full Hard Working Class Heroes 2009 Line-up:


7.30 - 8.00 - MIRACLE BELL
8.10 - 8.40 - WE CUT CORNERS
8.50 - 9.20 - SUBPLOTS
9.30 - 10.00 - THE DEAD FLAGS
10.10 - 10.40 - THE AMBIENCE AFFAIR
11.00 - 12.00 - VILLAGERS

(12:00 - 2.00AM HWCH CLUB)

7.15 - 7.45 - MIDATLANTIC
8.00 - 8.30 - ALRIGHT CHIEF
9.20 - 9.50 - A PLASTIC ROSE
10.00 - 10.35 - DARK ROOM NOTES

7.30 - 8.00 - I ♥ THE MONSTER HERO
8.10 - 8.40 - NO LADY
9.30 - 10.
10.10 - 10.40 - NOT SQUARES
10.55 - 11.30 - HERITAGE CENTRE

7.45 - 8.15 - ALBERT PENGUIN
8.30 - 9.00 - CITY OF ANGELS
10-00 - 10.30 - SERGEANT MEGAPHONE
10.45 - 11.15 - TALULAH DOES THE HULA
11.30 - 12.00 - NEOSUPERVITAL

7.30 - 8.00 - LADYDOLL
8.15 - 8.45 - THEME TUNE BOY
9.00 - 9.30 - BLACK ROBOTS
9.45 - 10.15 - ZEALOTS
10.30 - 11.00 - IDENTITY PARADE

7.30 - 8.00 - GIRAFFES
900 - 9.30 - HEATHERS
9.45 - 10.15 - THE STAR DEPARTMENT
10.25 - 11.00 - MORE TINY GIANTS



7.45-8.15 – HIRED HANDS
8.30 - 9.00 - O EMPEROR
9.10 - 9.40 - ALI & THE DTS
9.50 - 10.20 - GRAN CASINO
10.30 - 11.00 - SWEET JANE
11.15 - 12.00 - ADEBISI SHANK

(12:00 - 2.00AM HWCH CLUB)

7.10 - 7.40 - OLLIE COLE
7.50 - 8.20 - LAND LOVERS
8.30 - 9.00 - BRIANA CORRIGAN
9.10 - 9.40 - DEAF JOE
10.00 - 11.00 - FIONN REGAN

7.30 - 8.00 - FINGERSMITH
8.15 - 8.45 - KILL KRINKLE CLUB
9.00 - 9.30 - CUTAWAYS
9.45 - 10.15 - DISTRACTORS
10.30 - 11.00 - CHEAP FREAKS

7.30 - 8.00 - KYON
8.15 - 8.45 - YES CADETS
8.55 - 9.25 - C!TIES
9.35 - 10.05 - THE HOLY ROMAN ARMY
10.15 - 10.45 - VALERIE FRANCIS
10.45 - 12.15 - DJ SETS FROM:
12.30 - 01.00 - THE SPOOK OF THE 13TH LOCK
01.15 - 01.45 - THE DYING SECONDS
02.00 - 02.45 - HUNTER GATHERER

8.00 - 8.30 - ESCAPE ACT
8.45 - 9.15 - P.DOG
9.30 - 10.00 - BLOOD BOTTLER
10.15 - 10.45 - COLLIE

7.30 - 8.00 - RORY GRUBB
9.00 - 9.30 - GOATBOY
9.45 - 10.15 - THE POORMOUTH
10.30 - 11.00 - LIZ IS EVIL 



8.15 - 8.45 - DISCONNECT 4
9.00 - 9.30 - ROBOTNIK
9.45 - 10.15 - ONLY FUMES & CORPSES
10.25 - 10.55 - FUNERAL SUITS 
11.05 - 11.35 - 202S
11.50 - 12.30 - SUPER EXTRA BONUS PARTY 

8.10 - 8.40 - ULTAN CONLON
8.50 - 9.20 - FIONA MELADY
10.15 - 11.00 - THE ANGEL PIER

7.30 - 8.00 - ARMOURED BEAR
8.10 - 8.40 - BIGGLES FLYS AGAIN
8.50 - 9.20 - AUTUMN OWLS
9.30 - 10.00 - TIDAL DISTRICT
10.10 - 10.40 - VERONA RIOTS

7.30 - 8.00 - GO PANDA GO
8.10 - 8.40 - HASSLE MERCHANTS
8.50 - 9.20 - JOGGING
9.30 - 10.00 - TINY MAGNETIC PETS
10.55 - 11.30 - HAM SANDWICH

7.30 - 8.00 - PRIMO
8.15 - 8.45 - VOX POPULI
9.45 - 10.15 - REMMA
10.30 - 11.00 - AIRSTRIP ONE
11.15 - 11.45 - KILLER CHLOE

8.10 - 8.40 - THE VALS
8.50 - 9.20 - PLANET PARADE
9.30 - 10.00 - EXIT THE STREET
10.10 - 10.40 - POCKET PROMISE


So who will you being going to see? 

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Couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of lads if you ask Key Notes.  Long time favourites of this particular blog, Dark Room Notes, announced on their MySpace this morning that they had just inked a deal with Berlin/London based BBE.

According to the band:
We Love You Dark Matter will (now) receive a worldwise release in 2010.

It seems an initial single release in January 2010 will feature remixes from other artists on the BBE roster such as Dimitri from Paris and John Morales.  Next year will also see the band tour the UK, Europe, the US and Japan in support of the record.

Dark Room Notes will be playing The Button Factory on Friday, October 16 at 10pm as part of the 2009 Hard Working Class Heroes Festival.  More details on the rest of the line up for HWCH 2009 later this week.

Dark Room NotesLet's Light Fires

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Nuggets from our archive

2006 - Review of Neosupervital's debut album, written by Doctor Binokular. The famously compelling review, complete with pie charts that compare the angst of Neosupervital with the angst of the reviewer. As you do.