FAREWELL TOUR Richmond Fontaine All good things, they say, come to an end, and so it is with this Portland, Oregon, band that has so brilliantly turned lean prose and stark storylines into some of the most compelling alt.roots/rock music of the past 10 years. Primary songwriter Willy Vlautin will surely go on to do other things (notably in the writing of books and screenplays), as will other members of the band, but for now it’s a fond farewell to a band that will be missed.
FRESH FACED TRAD Zoë Conway, Dónal Lunny and Máirtín O’Connor The clean-lined beauty that defines this trio’s gorgeous recent recording, Faoi Lán Seol/In Full Sail, is likely to be even more pristine in a live setting, as they wend their way around the country, airing traditional, folk and original compositions with alacrity. Richard Thompson’s Crazy Man Michael sidles up alongside Coinleach Ghlas An Fhomhair as if they were lifelong bedfellows.
10th BIRTHDAY Bernard Shaw It’s a decade since Bodytonic took over a rundown boozer called Bambrick’s in Portobello and turned it into the all-singing, all-dancing, all-action Bernard Shaw, a buzzing pub with something going on in every nook and cranny. They celebrate 10 years on the go with an all-star cast including Mr Saturday Night’s Eamon Harkin representing New York and Derry, Glasgow’s Optimo, London’s K15 and the capital’s Adultrock and Bodytonic’s Ben Bix & Feather. Get there early as admission is free and this one will be jammers.
Both Blawan and Psyk are men noted for making a sublime racket. Jamie Roberts is the dude behind Blawan’s cuts of distinction with tracks like Getting Me Down, What You Do With What You Have and Why They Hide Their Bodies Under My Garage