CLUAS - Irish indie music webzine
CLUAS on Twitter

The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011

This review was first published on CLUAS in 2003
Other albums reviewed in 2003


Review of their album 'Is it ok to be loud, Jesus?'

'Hello everybody, how y'all? / Get your dancing shoes on and welcome to the rock and roll dance party'


No folks, this isn't the revival of Dick Clark's American Bandstand. This is something completely different. The opening couplet from Giveamanakick's debut album 'Is it ok to be loud, Jesus?' lays down the mantra of this awesome duo in an oh so sarcastic fashion. This album may indeed soundtrack many a rock and roll party over the next few years, but unlike Clark's show, copious amounts of sweat and all such matters rock are gladly present. The track in question, 'Ger Canning', hops out of the stall rather furiously. Stephen Ryan's vocals and guitar are met by a boisterous drum assault from Keith Lawler. For a track that clocks in at under four minutes and for a band that doesn't have any penchant for wimpy indie music or shoegazing, it strangely seems like something of a mini-epic. Plus, it ends with some insignificant clapping. Class.

Nine more songs are popped out of the cannon during a fat-free half an hour. 'Marmite Walks' has a Pixies-type intro, and indeed similarities have been drawn between GAMAK, and Frank Black's old mob. 'Phats' is the hit single in waiting if we lived in an ideal world. This particular track certainly veers away from the heavier components of the album, yet it still rocks like something that is in an altogether delightful tantrum with a riff so tasty that one wouldn't have to call for the allegorical sauce. However, it would seem that the real standout on this record is final track Darko Filopovic, which always reaps a huge response live.

'Is it ok?' certainly rocks like a beast. Some lazy listeners may try and lob Giveamanakick into one of the current fads featuring guitar bands, but behind the hilarious titles (e.g. 'Say No To Sports', 'Me and my Powerful Dad') and the feckless attitude, there are enough complexities and talent in Giveamankick's debut to prove that they are always going to be ahead of such whims. One of the most remarkable things about the record is that it continually remains authentic to the band's renowned live jaunts.

All in all, this is one hell of a debut from one of the most electrifying bands to ever come out of Limerick.

Ciaran Ryan

(bullet) Check out a CLUAS interview with Giveamanakick.
(bullet) Feel free to discuss this review on the CLUAS Discussion Board.