Electric Picnic 2016: 8 Recommended Acts to See

Electric Picnic 2016

Electric Picnic takes place in Stradbally this weekend (September 2 – 5) and there are no shortage of reasons to be excited. Tasty propositions abound, especially among the bigger names – Super Furry Animals, LCD Soundsystem, Daniel Avery, The Chemical Brothers to name but a few.

Aside from the attention grabbing bigger names, there’s plenty of quality among the smaller, perhaps lesser known acts. There really are some absolute gems amongst this year’s line-up so here are 8 highly recommended acts worthy of your attention this weekend.

Nialler9 has the full line-up here, if you haven’t seen it yet and there is a very handy, printable Clashfinder here too. Dead handy & does not require batteries. 

New Pope (Friday, 17.30-18.00 @ Earthship Stage)

New Pope is the Galway-based project fronted by Dave Boland who deal in truly beautiful, timeless and carefully crafted acoustic folk sounds. Passing with a whisper rather than a roar, New Pope’s songs are delivered with warmth and tenderness, as Boland’s distinctive vocal creates warm and lush atmosphere – and an overwhelming sense of sense of nostalgia. Yet to see them in the flesh but, on the evidence of last year’s splendid YOUTH EP & LP, they should be quite the proposition. Check out the layered, lush and beguiling beauty of ‘Love’ below:

The Altered Hours (Friday, 22:00 – 23:00, Body & Soul Main Stage)

For some time now, The Altered Hours have been eliciting much, and well deserved, praise for their frenetic and freewheeling psych/post-punk heroics. Everything they have done thus far has been gold – including debut album In Heat Not Sorry – and are reliable reputed to be one of Ireland most exciting live acts. For a glimpse of what mind-melting stuff Altered Hours are capable of, check out ‘Way of Sorrow’; a thrilling two-and-a-half-minute blast of turbulent post-punk influenced, driven, menacing and hazy swirl of psych-rock goodness.

No Monster Club (Saturday 18:00 @ Trailer Park: My Lovely Ranch Stage)

Easily one of the most reliable, inventive and brilliant bands in Ireland, No Monster Club bring their utterly lovable, rough-around the edges, lo-fi indie-pop hi-jinks to Stadbally. Live or on record, NMC never disappoint, there is just a infectious about everything they turn their hands. These fun-filled indie-pop adventures are just so damn endearing and guaranteed to brighten up your day.

Phare (Saturday, 01:00 – 02:00 am @ Oxjam)

Known for his work as one half of atmospheric duo Lyttet, Phare is the new solo-project from Peadar Kearney. On the clubbier side of things, Phare gracefully floats in an ambiguous hinterland between subtly euphoric and vaguely ambient, sustaining the rhythm and protracting the promise of a euphoric climax, while captivating through repeated propulsive beats and swirls. Check the hypnotic, twinkling crystalline grandeur of Kearney’s debut single, ‘UP’.

Slow Place Like Home (Sunday, 18.00 – 18.45 @ Body & Soul Main Stage)

Slow Place Like Home – the musical moniker of producer/musician Keith Mannion – has been treating us (and our ears) treating us to rich electronic sounds, crafted carefully from his Donegal base in the North-West of Ireland. Always inventive, imaginative and seductive compositions, Slow Place Like Home has already released a series of EPs and debut album Romola, to date. Now with a full band, 2016 saw the release brand new double A-sided singles ‘Tiger Lilly / Friday’, as they gear up for album number two next year. Another act who’s live shows have remained elusive, until this weekend hopefully.

The Dead Heavys (Sunday, 21:30-22:00 @ Body & Soul Main Stage)

The Dead Heavys are no strangers to receiving praise around these parts. Longstanding favourites, the Waterford five-piece are a great, great band, and an especially exciting live proposition. Their psych-tinged indie-rock is tempered with a catchy pop sensibility, rendering it utterly infectious for all and sundry. You can sample some of The Dead Heavys now characteristic combo of keys, guitars and vocals, anthemic surges and infectious sing-a-long moments, in ‘Liquidator’ – a bright, upbeat and rocking-groover that is very easy on the ears indeed.

ADULTROCK (Sunday, 21:25 – 22:10 Earthship Stage)

Under his ADULTROCK guise, Gavin Elsted (Super Extra Bonus Party & fellow Newbridge compañero) uses it as a vehicle to flex his dance music muscles, crafting magnificent dancefloor-ready, hypnotic and melodic electronic jams. His most recent EP Push and Pull came out in June through Bodytonic Music, and it is excellent. For a taste of it and Sunday’s service, check out the EP’s title track below. An enticing proposition.

Exmagician (Sunday, 22:00 – 22:45 Jerry Fish Side Show)

Exmagician is the latest musical adventure from long-time collaborators Danny Todd and James Smith; the musical partnership behind Cashier No.9. More urgent and rockier than their previous incarnation, still present, is their preference for shimmering psychedelics, echoed instrumentation and melodiousness. Falling somewhere between BRMC, Supergrass and yes, their previous band Cashier No. 9, ‘Kiss That Wealth Goodbye’ finds a band in fine form with its anthemic and quite cool vibe, amid a whirlwind of swirling melodies and catchy groove – as good a reason as any to catch them this weekend.


BarryGruff’s March 2015 Playlist


A regular monthly feature to the blog; a nice, neat and handy playlist of tracks featured during the month.

It was a pretty big month for the blog to be fair. We celebrated 5 years of BarryGruff with GruffWuff; a 19 track compilation of new, previously unreleased and exclusive recordings from some of my very favourite acts over the past 5 years of blogging. If somehow you missed all the hoo-ha about ‘GruffWuff’, there’s more info here & you can download / stream it here: Bandcamp / Soundcloud.

Aside from this rather significant milestone, there was the return of Tame Impala, Applescal, Crocodiles and Cian Ciaran with new tracks ahead of their respective albums, and new singles from Teleman, Telegram, Girls Names, Tandem Felix, The Dead Heavys, CaStLeS and Spies. Also featuring on the playlist are: Django Django, Ulrika Spacek, By The Sea, Hippies Vs Ghosts and O Emperor.

Listen to BarryGruff`s March 2015 playlist below. The track listing is after the jump:


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The Dead Heavys – ‘Liquidator’

The Dead Heavys 2015

The Dead Heavys are currently in the midst of wrapping up work on their debut album, hoped to see a 2015 release.

The Waterford five-piece return with irresistibly catchy new single ‘Liquidator’, a timely reminder of why news of an album, is very good news indeed. Teaming up with guest vocalist Aisling Browne of Solar Taxi and Cut Once they have served up yet another bright, upbeat and rocking-groover that is very easy on the ears indeed. Their now characteristic keys, guitars and vocals combo, anthemic surges and infectious sing-a-long moments, work in perfect tandem with Browne’s powerful and soulful vocals. The result is that their psych-indie stomp evolves into something with an added soulful edge, groove and coolness. The Dead Heavys continue to grow, adding further weight to all those attributes which stood them out from the crowd from day one. Hopefully their debut LP sees the light of day in 2015.

You can check out ‘Liquidator’ below and it is available as a free download for a limited time only.


The Dead Heavys – ‘Uptight’


Waterford’s The Dead Heavys have proven themselves a reliable and plentiful source of great tunes, the likes of ‘Everybody in the Nite’, ‘Slow Robot’ and ‘New Age of Innocence’ are testament to this not so outlandish claim.

The Waterford five-piece indie-rockers are back again with a brand new single called ‘Uptight’, and surprise, surprise, it’s another cracking track. Once again teaming up with Jagz Kooner (Primal Scream, Kasabian & Sabres of Paradise), they’ve delivered yet another bright, upbeat and so, so catchy tune in ‘Uptight’. Their now characteristic sheen is met with some anthemic surges and infectious sing-a-long moments, all filled with the shimmering sparkle that’s stood them out from the crowd from day one. Inspired stuff, as indeed is the video, which is the result of a fruitful collaboration from Matthew O’ Reilly (Lick My Style) and Colm Williamson of Waterford Whispers fame. Let’s just hope there’s plenty more from The Dead Heavys throughout 2014 and beyond.

Check out ‘Uptight’ and the video below. The single is out on May 30th.

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Best of 2013 w/ Keith from The Dead Heavys

It’s that time of year when every music website, publication and blog (including this one) are busy compiling lists, lists and more lists. Last year I asked bands and artists who’d played ‘BarryGruff Presents’ shows to put their own list making skills to the test in picking their ‘favourite album of 2013′, ‘favourite song of 2013′ & ‘favourite Irish song of the year’. After another successful year of shows, why break with tradition?

Right, that is enough from me, over to Keith from of The Dead Heavys and his picks from the year that was 2013.

Favourite album of 2013: Of Montreal – ‘Lousy With Sylvianbriar’

This album’s only been out since October but has already clocked up more listens than any other new release this year. Its quite a simple record (especially for Of Montreal) with a small band cutting it live to tape  but the songwriting is just fantastic. Great melodies paired with some seriously dark lyrics (a- la ‘Forever Changes’), makes for a great listen.

Favourite song of 2013: Unknown Mortal Orchestra – ‘Faded In The Morning’

Great tune from a great record. It somehow manages to be lo-fi, funky, psychedelic & rocking at the same time. Also has a great hook running through it.

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Favourite Remix of 2013: Jagwar Ma – ‘Come Save Me’ (Andrew Weatherall Remix)

Love the original track which has got a Phil Spector meets acid house vibe on it. The Weatherall mix drops the spector type beat and turns up the acid!

Favourite Irish song of 2013: O Emperor – ‘Contact’

Amazing band who really let loose on their new album. Great attitude & vibe to this track with so many different riffs going on throughout but never a not wasted.

BarryGruff Presents #13: The Depravations & The Dead Heavys :: Flanagan’s Bar, Newbridge :: Saturday :: March 16th


‘BarryGruff Presents’ returns to Flanagan’s Bar for its 13th Newbridge show on Saturday, March 16th. 13, lucky for some, huh?

Over the course of the previous shows there’s been some really special nights littered with many great performances. This coming Saturday will be another top night of live music with The Depravations and The Dead Heavys.

The Depravations are Galway four-piece indie-folk band who take their influences from a combination of ’50s and ’60s surf music, old country and blues. The band went down a storm when they played late last year and return as part of their tour in support of their excellent debut album, ‘Onwards, Westwards’. The album, like their music in general, is filled with warmth, rich sounds, stories and harmonies; they are one of the West of Ireland’s hidden treasures but hopefully not for too long.

The Dead Heavys are gearing up to release their debut record, produced Jagz Kooner (Primal Scream, Kasabian & Sabres of Paradise). The Waterford bands brand of funky indie rock, tinged with psychedelics and a catchy pop sensibility, is utterly infectious. Not a surprise then that they’ve already made quite a stir. In February alone they played a sell-out show in The Village, appeared on Today FM and have been announced for a slew summer festivals. 2013 looks like being a big year for the lads from Waterford, and what’s bigger than coming to Newbridge? 

It’s FREE in as usual & kicks off at 9pm. It’s going to be another great night of live music and one not to be missed. [RSVP]

The Dead Heavys – ‘Slow Robot’

the dead heavys

The Dead Heavys announced themselves last year with ‘Everybody in the Nite’, a funky indie rock number tinged with a psychedelics and a catchy pop sensibility. 

If ‘Everybody in the Nite’ were a statement of intent from the Waterford 5-piece, ‘Slow Robot’ goes much, much further. It delivers a tune with an undeniably infectious groove which will leave you powerless to resist it’s temptations, simply wonderful stuff.

As far as I can gather it is taken from the same release as ‘Everybody in the Nite’, their debut EP produced by Jagz Kooner (Primal Scream, Kasabian & Sabres of Paradise). Whatever the case, you can give ‘Slow Robot’ and it’s companion ‘Lazarus’ a spin below. 

(Video) The Dead Heavys – Everybody in the Nite

The Dead Heavys are a Waterford 5-piece who formed in late 2011. ‘Everybody in the Nite’ is the first cut  from their forthcoming debut EP, due out later in the year and was produced by none other than Jagz Kooner(Primal Scream, Kasabian & Sabres of Paradise).

‘Everybody in the Nite’ is funky indie rock, tinged with a psychedelic edge and shrouded with a catchy pop sensibility. Quite like their Kilkenny neighbours Neon Wolf, they walk that ‘indie/pop’ line ever so well. The Matthew Reilly produced video is a delight and the perfect companion for the song.

Not a bad start at all. Check it for yourself below.

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