Strange Brew presents
SEARCH PARTY ANIMAL
& True Tides
Thursday 24 May
Even at a time when the boundaries between genres are becoming ever more blurred, Irish quintet Search Party Animal collide an uncompromising hybrid of sounds. Mixing the organic instrumentation and song structures of guitar bands with the innovative production techniques of electronic music and a background in math-rock, they’re somehow both immediately accessible and surprisingly impossible to pigeonhole.
Although they’ve released just two tracks to date - their Faction Records debut ‘Evergreen’ and the follow-up ‘Enemies’ - they’re already making waves in all of the right ways. They built upon an early invitation to play Canadian Music Week when Radio 1’s Phil Taggart premiered ‘Evergreen’, and their undeniable potential was highlighted when they were named in 2FM’s Rising 2018 list.
All still in their late teens and early twenties, Search Party Animal’s unconventional sound has evolved from an unconventional background. The band started out busking, but back home Adam Redmond (vocals, guitars, production) and Ciarán Byrne (guitar) would instead spend their free time recreating the controlled chaos of epic favourites from the back catalogue of As I Watch You From Afar.
Early incarnations of the band played similarly styled music full of unconventional time changes, sprawling structures and intricate details. But as Redmond delved deeper into production, their focus changed. Now you might mention the likes of Foals, The 1975, Everything Everything, Submerse, Catching Flies and Bon Iver in an attempt to define their sound, but such comparisons are broad indicators rather than precise reference points.
“Whatever music comes out sounds like our band because of the way it’s written or the way I write vocal melodies,” explains Redmond. “We don’t want to limit the music to too specific a realm. We find it really interesting to combine indie, math-rock and sample-based music, and we’re still exploring the possibilities of that. If we set a premise for our music to be varied from the beginning, then hopefully it can be accepted for what it is.”
Although it’s still early days, Search Party Animal’s current killer calling card is their new single ‘Get Hitched’. Redmond’s attention-grabbing array of vocal production techniques is the first element of the track to weave its way into your consciousness. Yet more listens yield deeper rewards. An infectious hook demonstrates real songcraft, and the hypnotic grooves almost subsciously pull you further into the production.
“Our music has never really had a groove and I wanted something that was funky, in a weird way. Although,” he clarifies with a laugh, “I really hate funk! Having everyone playing tightly together on the beat was something I was really drawn towards.”
The song’s opening lyrics ‘“Get hitched or die trying” are engagingly cynical, but that black-hearted humour masks an underlying truth.
“Underneath everything we’re all just people trying to marry people. You find someone forever, or you die trying to find someone forever!” Redmond wrote the song early into a new relationship, and was inspired by the idea that being with someone could potentially evolve into life-long commitment. “It's an idea that can be a scary one for people to accept,” he continues. “A lot of those ideas come from wanting to verbalise not wanting something to end. That’s a daunting thought to some, but I don’t think it needs to be.”
As much as Redmond is their central force, Search Party Animal is very much a band effort: “We’re all complete best friends and we’ve grown-up as musicians. As a result, we have a huge amount of understanding between us.” Redmond and Byrne share an almost telepathic connection and their friendship with drummer Jamie Kealy dates back to childhood, while bassist Jack Rudden and keyboardist Dan McIntyre completed the gang in their early teens.
Redmond is effusive in his praise for his bandmates. Kealy is praised for his ability to create live drum patterns from computer programmed beats, while rhythm section partner Rudden is a solid foundation as a musician and a positive force as a personality. Finally, MacIntyre is hailed as the group’s tastemaker and best multi-instrumentalist, who possesses “a great mind for arrangements and how things should be recorded.”
Having previously played festivals including Electric Picnic and Other Voices, Search Party Animal are now preparing for the biggest headline show of their career to date at Whelan’s in Dublin. As the year progresses, they’re also hoping to hit a wider selection of festivals and to release a bigger collection of songs.
By concocting a diverse cocktail of styles, Search Party Animal have hit upon a sound that can inspire a cult-like following that will spread far beyond their origins in the Dublin suburb of Dundrum.
The continuing adventures of
Thursday 24th May
Upstairs at Whelan's
On Frankly, I Mutate, he has mutated into something rather unique and incredibly interesting indeed.” The Irish Times
“Inspired stuff” 8/10 – Hot Press
“As brilliantly distinctive as they come” **** Sunday Business Post
“Simply wonderful” 9/10 The Last Mixed Tape
"One of the most promising young songwriters in Ireland” – Stereogum
“Barnstorming” – NME
“Elegant, absorbing stuff” – Loud & Quiet
Paddy Hanna is set to release his new album Frankly I mutate on March 2nd. Paddy’s career to date has not been conventional. A cult figure in the Dublin music scene, he has released numerous critically acclaimed singles before retreating inwards. But now an album bursting full of Hanna’s morose charm and sardonic wit. Poetically, the studio where the album was recorded, Bow Lane, was knocked down a month after the album’s completion. Job done in timely fashion. The album, produced by Daniel Fox of Girl Band is searingly honest but for those familiar with Hanna’s previous singles, that will come as no surprise. He recently spoke candidly to the NME about his mental health:
“I allude to mental illness in my work. It’s considered by many to be a neurosis that spurs on creative work, however it is nothing but a crutch on my own creativity. My time in a depressive haze is spent in complete emptiness, weeks will go by, my beard will have grown out, my pen dried up. So when indeed I allude to mental illness it would usually be during a happy period where I can function. One of the most important days in my life came when I finally opened up about depression and was not met with jeers but rather acceptance and understanding”
Hanna’s songwriting has always has always sat somewhere between awkwardness and charm, that is something producer Daniel Fok wanted to convey through the production of the record. The key was to retain the anarchic nature of the songs while making them sound as they were always intended: rich and lavish. Ena Brennan (Tandem Felix) was integral in transitioning hummed melodies into the lush string sections that you seldom hear in DIY releases. The result is an album that recalls the likes of Jarvis Cocker and Scott Walker - dark humour and vulnerability - accompanied by Phil Spector-like arrangements.
Previous single Bad Boys, an infectiously catchy song featuring a trumpet line recorded in just ten minutes, as Hanna explains “They charged by the hour and we wanted him in and out as quickly as possible.” New single Toulouse The Kisser is upbeat and pulsating, highlighting Hanna’s variety of vocal delivery as well as subject matter.
Paddy Hanna has an authenticity other musicians strive towards for years. That realness, that melancholy, that dry sense of humour are all in abundance on this album.
State Magazine IE - Faces Of 2017 - "County Cork continues to produce artists of rare quality and vision"
Nialler9 - "a song that grows from gentle waves of instrumentation to chugging guitar, from a whisper to a shout”
The Thin Air - "with its subtle synth textures, harmonic flourishes and burrowing chorus refrain, this is cunningly anthemic alt-pop at its finest”
Delorentos have been making music together for over 10 yrs, and, in that time, we've seen and done a lot….
Screamed our lungs out on stage. Gasped for air between songs. Stared arm-in arm, in awe, over fields full of people and at beer-soaked audiences in sweaty bars
Strange Brew Showcase
SLOW PLACE LIKE HOME
After releasing their debut album, a monstrous slab of dark experimental rock Yours Sincerely Dr. Hardcore in 2012 and at the peak of their sci-fi powers Wrexham’s Gallops broke up in 2013 while on tour with ASIYFA. In 2016, they announced their return. Their new album matches the band member’s fuller sense of scope and vision; the sputtering electronics, and often-elongated guitar wails, recall the dystopian visions as depicted in the finest 1980s horror and sci-fi films. There are moments of soaring post-rock, humming dark ambience, esoteric offshoots, bubbling electronics and even the odd gargle of industrial-tinged noise.
Strange Brew presents
“ANOTHER MASTERFULLY PROPULSIVE, SLICKLY EFFORT FROM THE PAIR. EACH TRACK HERE IS STRAIGHT-UP DANCEFLOOR FIRE AND NO MISTAKE.”
The Thin Air
One of the finest electronic acts in the country make their most welcome return. The ‘Nothing But Love’ EP was one of 2017’s standout releases
Molly Sterling's music takes on a dark and deep direction, where you will find soloistic guitar riffs, melodic cello lines, powerful rhythms all grounded in deep, dark and emotional lyrics, and an artist that possesses a unique and sonorous vocal influenced by and reminiscent of the likes of Lana Del Ray and London Grammar’s Hannah Reid.