Required listening

Enemies are an Irish math rock band who exude exuberance. Their performance in the Pav was lightly attended but this only added to the extraordinarily intimate atmosphere, even leading to the band and the crowd swapping “Simpsons” references between songs.

The band explored many soundscapes onstage, from sweet and tender to raucous and frenetic. The two singers use their voices as if they were two more guitars, lending a loose, instrumental feel to their songs. Their compositions are dense and purposeful, mesmerising the audience. All jaws remained planted to the floor and for the quieter songs, all eyes were fixed to the stage. “Indian Summer” from their new album “Embark, Embrace,” was a real highlight of the evening, a bouncy tune in 7/8 time with relatable minimal lyrics which we hummed all the way home.

Enemies will be performing this August at Indiependence in Mitchelstown and I hope to see you there dancing erratically with me!

 

I can’t think of a band that had a more personal relationship with its fans than Joy Division. Ian Curtis openly expresses his fears in his beautifully poetic manner, which people can really latch on to. He is backed by one of the most artistically creative punk rock bands of their generation.

Dead Souls is a B-side that really stands on its own merit. Musically this track is led by Peter Hook’s melodic bassline, which dances around the guitar chords. Rather than bringing us to a huge climax, this creates the effect of never wanting the journey to end. The track builds and meanders for over 2 minutes before the vocals even come in.

“Control” is a great film about the short life of the band. I recommend it because to really dig deep into Joy Division’s music, one must first understand the forces behind Ian Curtis’ lyrics.

 

Can is a band who are hard to categorize. Their innovative approach to rhythm puts them somewhere between dance-punk and prog rock. They come from Cologne, Germany, a city that has a special place in my soul. James Murphy from LCD Soundsystem famously named Can as an influence in the LCD track, “Losing My Edge.”

Look out for Jaki Liebezeit on drums as he twists the time signature to keep this track moving. This heavy jam builds in intensity and nearly breaks apart at the seams just before its climax.

Listen to “Can – Paperhouse” below.