S.P.Y. ::: Cork Gig


Legendary Drum and Bass producer’s first visit to Cork. Support on the night from Jet Li and Critical.

2013 is the golden year for S.P.Y, aka Carlos Lima, the DJ and producer with a career firmly rooted in the underground drum and bass scene. After signing to heavyweight label Hospital Records in 2012, S.P.Y has moved from strength to strength bringing his trademark heavy, soulful sound to the masses. His debut LP, ‘What The Future Holds’ was released on Hospital Records the same year to critical acclaim. The LP not only received significant support from fellow artists and topped online sales charts, but was also awarded the coveted ‘Best Album’ at the annual 2012 Drum & Bass Arena awards. 

Moving to London from São Paulo ten years ago, S.P.Y was quick to establish himself within the UK drum and bass scene. After six months of working with only basic equipment, S.P.Y’s natural talent for production saw his first ever release signed to Metalheadz in 2005. Discovered by Goldie himself, ‘Till Dawn’ was featured on the ‘Winter Of Content’ compilation and was a key indication of the quality of things to come.

In 2006 S.P.Y signed his second release ‘Black Flag / Double Dragon’ on newly established label Med School, Hospital Records’ alternative, experimental imprint. This release was quickly followed by ‘Ghost Ship / Silent Sleeper’ and S.P.Y began collaborating with artists such as BCee, Physics and Kiat. In 2009 S.P.Y released his first solo EP on Marcus Intalex’s label Soul:R and had releases on many other labels including Digital Soundboy, Innerground and Metalheadz. During this time S.P.Y also developed lasting production partnerships with Total Science and DJ Marky.

The following years were immensely successful for S.P.Y, with support from producers across the scene. Friction included five S.P.Y tracks on his Ministry of Sound compilation and Andy C featured four tracks on his Nightlife compilation. Proving his production quality and consistency in 2010 / 2011, S.P.Y delivered standout releases on Ram, Metalheadz, Shogun and Spearhead – Most notably his universally adored track ‘By Your Side’. In addition to this, S.P.Y also took on high-profile remixes for the likes of Deadmau5, Claude von Stroke, LTJ Bukem, Chase & Status, Delilah and Zinc ft. Miss Dynamite, with S.P.Y’s own personal re-lick of Zero 7’s ‘In The Waiting Line’ becoming a signature in his live sets.

In 2012 S.P.Y focused on the production and release of his first LP ‘What The Future Holds’, backed up with a relentless tour schedule of Australia, the United States, Canada, Russia, Asia, New Zealand and Europe. S.P.Y’s skills behind the decks rival his studio talents and he delights fans with an educated blend of old school classics and fresh new beats. Always one to stay true to his roots, S.P.Y has a unique ability to bring his trademark underground sound to a worldwide audience. Alternating between beautiful, orchestral, musical sets and dark, rolling mixes S.P.Y captures the emotions of the crowd and is definitely one to watch. Whether he is playing at a high-profile festival such as Exit, Outlook or Nocturnal Wonderland or an intimate club show, S.P.Y always delivers.

Moving into 2013 S.P.Y is once again touring the globe and busy in the studio. His remix of James Zabiela’s ‘Perseverance’ has been a huge success, in addition to his collaboration with Nu:Logic ‘Start Again’, which was included on their debut album. The summer season sees S.P.Y playing big-name festivals such as Parklife, Electric Daisy Carnival, Tomorrowland, Global Gathering and Love Box and working on his forthcoming second LP, to be released on Hospital Records. The future is holding great things for S.P.Y and his growing global fan base and outstanding reputation are testament to this.


Preview::: Kelpe- Liveset, City Limits, Cork

Wadkins Promotions Presents

Live Set from the amazing KELPE
Live Set from REPLETE
DJ set from OBAMABO
+ JusMe.

8 Euros on Door



Replete EP review http://thethinair.net/2013/06/replete-replete-ep/

Porn for the Blind::: Preview

Porn For The Blind are an eclectic rock band that hail from Cork city, Ireland. Influences include Fleetwood Mac, Talking Heads and Sparklehorse. The lads ( and lady) play an upbeat blend of psychedelia tinged rock. You can check them out for free this thurs (23rd) at the Woodford , Cork, Admission free.

Cillian Murphy to DJ at Bounce Back fundraising Gig.

Any Cillian Murphy fans out there? You’ll have the chance to see him up close this Friday when he provides the tunes in the Opera House  bar after Bounce Back Cork for the lucky ticket holders. Tickets for Bounce Back are €15/20, proceeds go towards providing Cork’s Youths a facility for sport, dance and music, whilst providing emotional and psychological support to young people and their families. 


Music on the night comes from Young Wonder, Stevie G , Grenade, Voice Effect , Karen Underwood and the Roaring Forties.

Friday25th Jan @ 8pm. TICKETS 20 EURO FROM http://www.corkoperhouse.ie 

Richard Hawley::: The Savoy 06/12/12

Think of Sheffield and you might conjure up images of the City of steel, United & Wednesday.  Where do heartfelt love songs fit into that? It may be ‘grim oop north’ but it certainly hasn’t damaged the wonderful song writing talent of a certain Mr Hawley. He took to the stage bedecked in leather jacket and turn up jeans and do you know what, he rocked the shit out of the Savoy. It was an interesting crowd on the night; a mixture of hipsters and oldies but the one defining characteristic was that they were here to appreciate a master song smith at work. It’s a tribute to Hawley’s on-going critical appeal that the venue was packed to the rafters for his latest show on Leeside.

Hawley delivered a set chockfull of outstanding numbers with gusto and standouts included ‘Open up your door’ and ‘Before’. There was a nice line in banter with the crowd it made for a typically accomplished night’s entertainment. I must admit I wasn’t overly sold on his stuff before the gig but after seeing him in the flesh I’m a convert. All too often an act can garner the affection of the muso critics and fall flat in person but as soon as he kicked off proceedings with the new album’s titular track “Standing at the sky’s edge” you just knew you were in for something a little bit special. This wasn’t a jaded performer going through the motions, this was a singer who connects with his crowd from telling people to yap away if they like during the quiet numbers to telling us about his kite flying adventures on acid. Hawley has an easy and unaffected stage presence that translates into a relaxed atmosphere that perfectly reflected his seemingly effortless style.

An encore was never in doubt and the crowd were in full voice as they roared their appreciation. “Lady Solitude” and “The Ocean” brought proceedings to a close and the first big act to hit the Savoy since its recent re-opening left this audience elated and delighted in equal measure. Alt-J might have scooped the Mercury this year but they only wish they could pull off a leather jacket and NHS specs with such ease. A truly wonderful night from a very special talent

Fred:::The Pavilion, Cork, 25.10.12

Courtesy of Wearenoise.com

Fred cost me a tenner tonight – I ill-advisedly bet a friend that the band did not have a science-related song. I was wrong. I’d forgotten the wonderfully titled ‘The Wondering Geologist’ off 2002’s Can’t Stop I’m Being Timed.

I only mention this as Fred were promising to delve into all four of their albums as they returned to the shores of the Lee for a hometown gig. It was always likely to be a suitably joyous affair. Over the course of their career, Cork’s finest have managed to develop a reputation for being tremendous fun live – on the back of this they can always count on a devoted crowd when they’re on their home turf. Natural bias aside, they’re in my opinion one of the most accomplished live acts in the business and they never fail to entertain. Tonight wasn’t any different.

Dublin five piece The Gorgeous Colours warmed up the crowd with a nice set that mixed tracks from their EP and their forthcoming album, their combination of pop-tinged ditties and soaring melodies got things ticking over nicely. Highlight of their short set was the wonderfully melodic ‘It’s ok to be normal’.

Before long the main event took to the stage. Bouncing into view with their typical blend of energy and stage presence, Fred launched straight into a set that encompassed most of their back catalogue highlights, and then some. This was as promised, one for the fans. There were plenty of numbers from the mists of their near 15 years plus of making music.

‘Moonjuice’, their first ever recorded track, was an appropriate choice and it got the place moving. The crowd lapped up every minute of it. They nearly lifted the roof with ‘Four Chords and the truth’, Jamie Hanrahan making a rare foray to the mike for this spoken word-ish belter from their second album. Frontman Joe O’Leary was clearly enjoying himself and he worked the crowd for all it was worth, the banter was flying.

Here were an act on familiar territory and dipping in and out of their musical history. It was a fantastically energetic and raucous affair. The boys even had a few ladies from the West Cork Ukulele Orchestra join them on stage for two tracks to add to the carnival atmosphere. By the time crowd favourites ‘Skyscrapers’ and ‘Running’ were aired we’d already had a conga line and an impatient demand for acknowledgement for the ‘girls from Sherkin Island’.

Acknowledgement was theirs; it was just one of those kinds of nights. There was a healthy mix of tunage from Fred’s back catalogue on display, it was great to hear forgotten favourites from Making Music so You don’t Have to were sitting comfortably alongside newer material like ‘Trial By Fire’.

Far too quickly the set zipped by and before we knew it the encore was done and dusted and Fred departed the stage leaving their audience sweaty and exhilarated. Playing your hometown can, as they admitted themselves, often be like playing in front of your relatives but there was no self-consciousness, stumbled lines or family arguments here. The Fred boys came to town and left the Pav conquered in their glorious wake.

FRED::: Q& A

Courtesy of http://wearenoise.com/index.php/2012/10/fred-qa/

Hometown heroes made good Fred rifle through their back catalogue at The Pavilion tonight – Niall checked in with them to see how their 2012 has been

It’s been another busy year for the band, between the continuing success of 2011′s Leaving my Empire, to playing Electric Picnic, to swapping tunes with the Franks and the Walls in the Beamish Brewery, it’s been an interesting time. Has there been anything in particular that sticks in the memory with you from 2012?
Ordinarily when you think of highlights in a year, it tends to be stuff like that, different shows or tours abroad and so on, but outside of that the highlight has been that we signed an international Publishing deal with a company called Nettwerk.
It’s a strange sign of the times but publishing and having your music played in TV Shows, ads, movies etc. around the world has become the launchpad internationally for many artists over the last few years, now that the tradional distribution model for music has gone out the window. For us, it’s a nice validation of our own suspicions that our music would work anywhere through any medium.

You’ve garnered the reputation of now being ‘big in Canada’. How did that come about?
That’s true, it’s Celine Dion, Bryan Adams, Us and Alanis Morissette. Between the four of us, we’ve carved up that territory. Unfortunately we drew the short straw and got the northern, unpopulated area.

We took a chance a few years back of playing an industry festival in Toronto, and on the strength of the gig (and much behind the scenes preparation and pre-emptive inviting of the appropriate people by our manager), we came out of it with a Canadian record deal with a company called Sparks Music. Now we’re just counting the dollars as they roll in. But they’re Canadian, so it’s not real money.

You’re returning to Leeside with upcoming sets in the Pav and Skibbereen. Is it always different to be playing in front of the ‘home crowd’ so to speak?
Sometimes it’s like playing in front of your family. You know there’s nothing but loving support there, but it’s also slightly awkward because these people changed you when you soiled yourself, and bathed you naked. This is more true when you play in front of your parents.

The shows we’re doing in Cork where we’re playing songs from all of our albums, could only really be done here first as outside of Cork, few people would know our first album, as you can’t get it anymore. It’s actually quite exciting, kind of like having a reunion with people you haven’t seen in years. Lets hope they’re all fat and ugly now.

I mentioned last year’s Leaving my empire. The record was really well recieved critically and made a nice dent in the music-going consciousness too. It was in many ways a less poppy record than its predecessor. Were you pleased with how the record was received?
It was quite a conscious decision for us to make a record like that. The previous album got us a huge amount of daytime radio play, and we’ll be forever grateful for that as it multiplied our audience and enabled us to keep going where we wanted to go.

However, the music we all love and enjoy is maybe not as poppy as that album. So when making Leaving my empire, we focussed on trying to create what we’d love. There were one or two songs we had recorded that may have been more radio friendly, but they didn’t fit in with the overall picture of the album so were left off.

We knew that these songs wouldn’t have daytime radio appeal, and maybe would mean less sales intitally, but it got a great reaction and lots more interest from the established industry and music lovers, hence allowing us to sign international publishing deals.

As a band that have been making music for over ten years, is there any advice you’d have for acts that are just starting off? How do you reflect on your back catalogue from this standpoint?
Hard to say really. When you start off, more often than not you’re sustained and fuelled by a love of it. The longer you go, the harder it is to maintain that without growth.

If I had advice it would be to try looking at the bigger picture early on. When doing gigs, ask why you’re doing them, what will you achieve, is there real progress here, or are we just doing it because that’s what bands do. Of course there are times you can’t think like that and you just do stuff because you want to and would like to. But if you can have a general vision of where you want to go then you can measure the things you’re doing by that standard and if they help achieve that vision.

In terms of back catalogue, because of these shows we’ve had to go through the early material, and some of it feels like discovering a bad letter or poem you wrote when you were in school. Some of it sounds excellent.

Lastly, what’s in store for Fred for the rest of 2012 and the new year?
We are taking this show – where we play all our old songs – around the country before the year is out. Cork will be a good barometer as to whether it works.

Toy Soldier::: Interview

Cork based electro rock outfit Toy Soldier are purveyors of punchy dance-floor grooves mixed up with hard rocking riffs. The trio have been causing a buzz with quality live performances and have released their debut long player ‘Calling up the Dusk’ on i-tunes . I caught up with songwriter and guitarist Cian Walsh for a few words about the band….

Your music is described as ‘ElectroRock’. Who are your influences?

We have a wide range of influences in our sound. Everything from Depeche Mode to Nine Inch Nails to Blondie. We combine melody with dancefloor groove and rocky aggression.

How has 2012 been for Toy Soldier what would you consider the highlight?

2012 has been a very important year for the band. We feel this year has put us on the map so to speak. It’s hard to pin point one particular highlight as it has been such a great journey so far. We have been consistently gigging both in Ireland and in the UK whilst also recording our debut album ‘Calling Up The Dusk’. I guess releasing our album in September is of special significance as it is such a pivotal step for any band.

The Cork music scene seems to be thriving at the moment, is it encouraging to be part of such a vibrant music environment?

It certainly is encouraging. I think when the standard of music is in such a good place it’s healthy for all the bands who are a part of it. There is such a great hard working vibe with so many bands that we know in Cork. Bands like Time Is A Thief, Versives, Waking Up Sunday and The Empire Lights are all great friends of ours who have massive potential.

What have been the best and worst gigs youve played this year?

Well it’s kind of hard to answer that question because we look at all of our gigs as positive experiences. We were blown away with the crowd at our album launch in Cyprus Avenue, that was a real celebration. Our last show in Dublin Castle in Camden Town was also a cracker!

Do you have a specific pre-gig ritual?

We like to chill out together before our show. We do some acapella warm ups which always gets us in the mood. Our show starts with a pretty euphoric intro while we’re backstage. Once we hear that through the front of house system the adrenaline starts flowing!

Lastly Cian, Whats in store for Toy Soldier for the next few months?

Things are moving fast for us right now. National radio has just picked up on our new single ‘Natural Disaster’ so we follow that up in the new year with a second single from the album. We launch the physical version of our album in January with our first headline show in Whelan’s which we are very excited about. In February we hit the UK again for a mini tour and then it’s back to Ireland to run for government and sort ourselves a decent pension!!!

‘Calling up the Dusk’ is out now 

Clock Opera::: Irish Dates

Tonight sees London Indie outfit Clock Opera arrive in town to play a gig in Cyprus Avenue. Clock Opera have been the musical guise of  multi-instrumentalist, singer, songwriter, producer Guy Connelly since 2009.

For fans of crooning pop and avant garde electronica , Guy has been described as ‘sounding like Morrissey’s younger brother backed by Moby’ Clock Opera has become a full band over the last three years which gives Guy’s songs the full spectrum they’re craving. Island records are releasing the much anticipated debut album Ways To Forget this year. Theyre playing a series of Irish dates on their European tour.