Now in it’s ninth year, Hard Working Class Heroes hit venues across Dublin over the weekend (October 6th – 8th). As well as many of Ireland’s best and brightest emerging talents playing there was a whole host of panels, talks and free shows but for me, it’s about the gigs.
On Thursday Sounds of System Breakdown kicked things off in The Button Factory with a solid set of genre hopping electro. Spies were next to take up the mantel. Even if the sound seemed a bit off to begin with, their was no holding them back. Epic is a much over used word these days but that is surely the best way to describe their brand of rock. Thursday’s high point was undoubtedly We Cut Corners. The Dublin duo are stunningly tight performers, what they lack numerically they make up with volume and excellence. It is indie-rock done right while flirting with post punk, hearing their new single ‘Leopard’ live is quite something. With an album due soon these guys are definitely ones to watch out for.
Friday began back at The Button Factory with Tenaka. Opening a perfectly tailored set of soft ambient beats and atmospheric sounds before taking things up a notch with bigger thumping beats from his stunning EPhemeral EP. Next up was No Monster Club a short distance away in The Workman’s Club whose lively to the point speedy punk sound draws quite heavily from The Strokes and The Libertines, but if they were much cheerier. You can’t help but love this Dublin trio and hearing the likes of ‘The Last Bottle In The World’ and ‘Electric Picnic’ is always a treat.
Staying put in the Workman’s we awaited We Are Losers. They have steadily grown into one of the best live bands in Ireland since their debut live show at last years HWCH. While that was a nervy (but impressive nonetheless) this was an assured and impressive show, proving bands need time to grow. ‘Cheerleader’ and ‘Sunset Song’ went down particularly well with the packed crowd. What makes Losers different to most of their contemporaries is they can take things to another level, and they aren’t finished yet.
Saturday and it was back to the Workman’s to see The Depravations who were the new discovery of the weekend. The soothing sounds of their rootsy indie folk had me gripped, echoes of ’50s/’60s masters at play with a touch of more modern acts like The Coral. It was back to The Button Factory for Ghost Estates where the Dublin 5 piece’s tight indie sound took things up a notch with singles ‘Paris’ and ‘Forever or Never’ being notable high points. They have presence and a well honed sound, it is going to be interesting to see what direction they take over the next twelve months or so.
Saturday was turning out to be a ever improving feast of new music and House of Dolls were it’s (and possibly the weekend’s) pinnacle. Their’s is a mixture of dark, dirty and atmospheric psychedelic rock played with a confidence and maturity of a world conquering group. Their set was stunning and with a debut album promised soon, expect to hear much more from these guys. Next it was over to the Mercantile sharpish to see Ginola who didn’t disappoint. Short, sharp and to the point punk with a serious bite is what they do – it’s loud, feisty and shout-a-long punk at it’s very best. If you get the opportunity to see these guys, do your a massive favour and do! A scintillating performance to bring the curtain down on another glorious HWCH.You forgot a username for the YouTube shortcode