Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Summer Gig Guide

Hey Guys, I'm Alex new here to the blog and I'm very proud to present our first monthly gig guide. If you want your gig to be included in next months gig guide drop us an email to with all the details. This month features some awesome local festivals and a few great local gigs:

Getting to Know: Little Matador- Oh Yeah Centre, Belfast- Thursday 7th August 2014

In the next of its "Getting to Know" series Oh Yeah Centre presents a live interview interspersed with acoustic tracks from Little Matador's Nathan Connolly and Dave Magee.

Stendhal Festival of Art – Limavady – Friday 8th – Saturday 9th August 2014

The festival returns again this year and it is bigger and better than ever with headliners including Scotland's Frightened Rabbit and Derry's own The Undertones. Other highlights include The Wonder Villains, In An Instant, Go Wolf and SlowPlaceLikeHome  This festival is somewhat different to its other local counterparts such as Forfey or Sunflower Fest as it focuses on more than just music, you can also expect poetry, artists, theatre and comedy. 

Old Fang Presents: Gallery Circus, Travis Is A Tourist - The Menagerie, Belfast - Thursday 14th August

Gallery Circus are a blues rock two piece (who are actually identical twins) from Newcastle, England, their passion towards performance is evident. But the local support in former Colly Strings man, Travis Is A Tourist, is probably going to be the main draw to punters. Travis' soul tinged vocals are really something special.

Volume Control Summer Festival: Wood Burning Savages, The Clameens & TBC - Oh Yeah Centre Belfast - Saturday 23rd August

This indoor festival features a pretty huge and impressive local lineup including LORIS, Freak's, Those Ghosts, Owen McGarry, BeeMickSee, Paper Man, Treehome, Sullivan & Gold and 2 relative unknowns in the form of acoustic acts female singer songwriter Jamie Brown and Patrick Moore. 

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

INTERVIEW: His New Atlas

His New Atlas - His Young
You may have heard the name His New Atlas before; the nom de plume of Armagh singer-songwriter Eoghan O’Hagan. I believe he is on the cusp and more than highly capable of breaking free from the dense bubble which shelters the Northern Irish music scene from the rest of the world. I was lucky enough to catch up with Eoghan to discuss EPs, secret garden shows and how, despite his latest single being reported inappropriate, he is stronger and more determined to get his music heard than ever before. 

T: Firstly, who are you?

E: Hi. I am His New Atlas, Eoghan O'Hagan. I am 19. That is about it...

T: So you've recently released a music video shot by Darren Lee of Maverick Renegade Productions for the stunning single 'His Young' - what was it like to work with one of the top music video directors in Ireland?

E: Darren is one of the nicest people you could work with/meet. I had him walk through a field filled with cows while carrying his very expensive gear which was funny to watch. I had a lot of fun shooting the video, he knew exactly what I wanted and just exceeded every expectation of mine. The man is amazing!

T: That’s awesome! I must ask though; the video had reached thousands of views within its first days of release, until someone reported it - why do you think someone would want to do that? Has the problem been resolved?

E: I released the video after gigging over Ireland and England, and I suppose I had people waiting for the new stuff to come out for a good bit, and put a lot of work into promoting it. I ended up with over 11,000 views in three days, which I am still proud off. It was then flagged for certain content that was then reviewed and didn't not violate the terms or conditions of Youtube, so the view was returned to Youtube, but stripped off all views, and the link. I received so much support from everyone, and I am so grateful for that because after it was taken down I didn't think anyone cared about me or my music, and now I know thanks to that person who reported that people do care, and everyone is out there to take care of each other. So I am grateful it was reported. Thanks man/woman! Check it out HERE.

T: That’s very inspiring! So, you've been doing a few gigs this summer to promote the new single and you have a few dates left - how has that being going so far?

E: Yeah I am just finishing of the "His Young" Irish tour this week. I was in Whelans, Dublin last night, I have a secret garden show in Belfast, then Rosin Dubh, Galway Sunday. It’s been great! Biggest Irish tour I have ever done. I’ve met some amazing people, and caught some mind blowing musicians.

T: So you're currently working on your new EP ‘Torn Out Lungs’ - when is it going to be released and what have you got planned for the rest of the year?

E: Torn out Lungs is officially done! I am actually writing for my next EP. But ‘Torn out Lungs’ is coming out Late August alongside another music video, a UK & Irish tour, and four live sessions in a church – ‘Church Sessions’.

T: Awesome! So for those who have never listened to your music, could you describe your sound?

E: I don't know; it’s really sad - not really positive. Just I suffer from a lot, and have my whole life and that is where the "sound" comes from I guess.

T: What would be your dream venue to play?

E: I would love to build a gigantic blanket fort, and have a billion tea lights everywhere. Shamefully that is a fire hazard.

T: Finally, how can people find you or get in touch?

E: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the 'His Young' video

Coming Soon...

Things are changing here at More Than Bullets and Bombs...

I'm very excited to announce that it'll no longer be just little old me running the blog - as you can probably tell, there's no way in hell that I can do it by myself. I never seem to have the time. Therefore, I have recruited a small team of awesome people to help me out - so watch out for their names popping up very soon!

In addition to this, I'm trying to take the blog to a new level - I'm going to be getting a Facebook page set up soon as well as a custom domain (hopefully!) so watch out for that too!

I don't know why I didn't think of doing these things sooner, but like I said, I couldn't do it by myself so I've got a great little gang together to help me out. I can't wait! The future is bright, and I'll continue (and better) my mission of helping the world realise that there is more to Northern Ireland than bullets and bombs. 

Tiarna xx

Monday, 9 June 2014

Spectrum Festival// 7th June 2014// Speakeasy, QUB// Review

Photographer: Luke Joyce 
I honestly don't know where to begin - what an astounding night for local talent! I must have been in the Speakeasy for about 8 solid hours, soaked to the skin in sweat and alcohol and the sweet sound of the finest selection of Northern Irish bands gracing my ears.

Tonight we have Go Swim kicking things off, punctually. Their indie roots are carefully fused with a dream-like texture and, although playing to such a small number of people, execute their energy very well, with their dual riffs and female harmonies, serving as the main attraction. Next up we have quartet, Hurdles and although playing no more than three songs, provide an insight to their honest, solid, summery indie works. This band always remind me of Glasgowbury 2013 in which I laid back on the grass soaking up the sun, listening to this wonderfully vibrant band. It is undeniable that their set was much too short, which is a shame. 

Affleck, serving as the third support bill tonight, prove themselves to be the most unique in sound and stature. A frontman with a synthesizer and a violin - why not? It obviously works. The band are quite bass-synth heavy, playing with the experimental and progressive genres, which leads into their trance-like, luminescent setlist. The Late Twos are up next, oozing confidence and pulling the audience to their feet. There are elements of punk incorporated into their music, but settle mainly in the alternative/indie genre and provide an insight into some new material, which goes down a treat.

Simple and deconstructed, New Ancestors enter the stage as a pair who provide a rawness in their music, stripped down to the beautiful bare bones. It isn't long, though, until the other band members join - bringing an even stronger sound into play. The final support of the evening, Kasper Rosa, are the heaviest of the supports. Their sound is heavy and powerful and surging. I noted the fact that the band aren't vocal-heavy, but all the better. To me, it's as though they were channeling And So I Watch You From Afar, however, the band go out of their way to be completely unique. 

The crowd have now formed as every pair of eyes wait patiently for the homecoming of A Plastic Rose
Frontman, Gerry, has been floating about for some time, being greeted graciously and welcomed back by everyone in his path (for those who are unaware, A Plastic Rose now reside in Nottingham.) I've spotted members of other local greats such as Silhouette, Rams' Pocket Radio, Couth, Pretty Child Backfire and all members of Wonder Villains - all here for the same reason, to be spectators to this incredible line up at Spectrum Festival tonight.

A Plastic Rose take to the stage, applauded and hailed by everyone in the room. The princes of Belfast town have come home. "It's fucking great to be home," Gerry cries as the band get stuck into their energy fueled, sweat and alcohol-driven set. Between being the creators of mosh pits and swigging from bottles of buckfast as they dedicate songs to their hometown and people of Belfast, the band then power through tracks, old and new, such as "Oceans" and "This Side of Winter" each making the crowd go as wild as the next. Towards the end, fans are encouraged to whip off their shirts, as followed by the example of our frontman. After diving into the crowd, guitarist Ian is carried gracefully by his adoring (and topless) fans, carried all the way and dropped off appropriately at the front of the bar. I have never seen a homecoming like this before. Absolutely spectacular. 
Photographer: Luke Joyce 

The time has come, the room is now full, it's coming up to midnight and Mojo Fury get stuck into monster tracks such as "Terraform," "Money Body Body Money" and the ever poignant "All in Awe." At some point during the show, someone spills their drink down all the length of my back, and then again on my front - and I couldn't even get mad. The strobe lights were going epileptic, taking me out of my mind for a few minutes. The band powered through older tracks and most tracks from their latest release, "The Difference Between" sending the crowd into a frenzy every time. It's now fifteen minutes until one o'clock - I'm surprised by myself that I'm still standing to be honest - and the band surge into the title track from their newest album. Each and every pair of arms and legs go epileptic along with the lights. 

Just when we think it's all over, the band power through one of my all-time favourite Nirvana songs - "Territorial Pissings" which was beyond words and was the final straw for my poor voice. I don't think I could have asked for a better lineup to demonstrate the passion and the energy of our beloved music scene.

Fair play to the organisers of Spectrum Festival, and roll on 2015! You can see more stunning pictures by Luke Joyce by clicking HERE.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Spectrum NI: The Countdown

So, it's officially less than a week until Spectrum NI this Saturday 7th June in the Speakeasy, QUB. I hope y'all are going. Katie and I will be! I'll be writing a min-review of the gig and Katie will be taking some awesome shots of the band. The full lineup is listed below:

Mojo Fury//A Plastic Rose//Kasper Rosa//New Ancestors//The Late Twos//Affleck//Hurdles//Go Swim

Killer lineup isn't it?! How wonderful to see A Plastic Rose up there, it'll be like a homecoming. I'm hoping to see all you're gorgeous faces there. It's only £12 or £10 for students.

You can get your tickets from Ticketmaster now by clicking HERE and to get more information, head over to Spectrum's official Facebook page by clicking right HERE.

See you there!

Monday, 14 April 2014

REVIEW: Serotonin - Gestures EP

Okay, this is my first review in a while, so excuse me if I’m a little rusty! Today I present to you the awesome Serotonin. With a genre that I can only describe as alternative indie-grunge, they are a young Belfast quintet with an average age of 17 who have recently released their debut EP - Gestures.

First track, and easily my favourite, “Cleanse Me” built on the foundations of a simply effective riff certainly leans itself towards the grungier side of this record. The vocals of frontwoman Lucy Loane hints towards a unique rebellion and remind me vaguely of an edgier Theresa Wayman of Warpaint singing “Love is to Die” and at times even Romily Alice of Japanese Voyeurs, although, she actually sounds nothing like these artists. But this is good; the band is truly unique in sound and stance. The words “Cleanse me, with savlon lips” ring lingeringly through the chorus and will be etched into your mind for days to come.

Exploring what I see to be the melodic-indie side to the band, “Cold Coffee” contains a beat that you’ll find programmed into your system under “tap your foot” or “bop your head”. This is where the infection really begins; it’s so pleasantly catchy. I can picture this song to soundtrack a movie set in suburban New York – I’m not quite sure why. It’s sweetly melodic, but the edge is still evidently there.

The daydream sequence of the melody in “Daytime TV” reveals a distinctive rawness with a sensual blend of chiming guitars and a pounding drum rhythm for an intro. The lilting vocals of Lucy Loane softly unravel “Paralysed in vivid dreams, your phantom limb screams...” and there’s something in the background: a simple melody on a xylophone to emphasise the wonderfully dream-like qualities of this song. It’s a peaceful track to drift in and out of consciousness to, I find.

Finally, “Idle Hands” also possesses some dreamlike qualities, just like its predecessor. However, in saying that there’s a lot of power in this song: In the vocals, in the guitars, the drums. It’s forceful and turbulent. The vocals, especially, are immense. There’s one particular piece of the song which makes you want to throw your fist into the air and start and revolution. Then that riff... Traditional, but completely unique in sound and structure. It really stands out and reminds me of an old 90s record. It makes me believe that, if they keep up the good work, Serotonin will certainly be taken far with their music.

It’s a solid piece of work; especially for a debut EP. If you’re in and around Belfast, I’m pretty sure you can pick up a physical copy of this in Head Records (either that or I was dreaming it?). If not, you can buy it on BANDCAMP. You really ought to. Like come on, even the artwork is fucking class!

Sunday, 13 April 2014

The Revival

Firstly, that had to be done. Secondly, yes I have returned after over a month of not posting and not making the effort to make this blog successful. But, I have good excuses. It's been a really tough couple of months as I've been quite sick and I have had more than my fair share of problems especially the last few weeks - it's been hell to say the least. And although I'm not 'better' as such, I thought I should at least keep this blog going in the hope that it'll make me feel better and feel good.

So, what you can expect over the next few weeks is beyond me - but a review of the awesome Gestures EP by  Belfast alt-indie-grunge rockers Serotonin will be coming up shortly. Get syked!