IT'S all systems go in this week's editions of Northern Winds. Last week's column featured one of the largest collective drops of the year from our artists (so far), with a huge slew of singles dropping amidst a series of new festival lineup announcements. This week is something similar, except that it's even bigger. The floodgates are well and truly open and thankfully you have your trusted Northern Winds to help you sort through the slog for that perfect spring playlist.
Before we get into that, however, some important live announcements. News broke this week of a new club night launching in Dublin – the aptly named 'Fluid'. It says it's for "Bisexuals, Pansexuals, the Fluid and Flexible + Friends" and will take place this May at new Dublin venue Pawn Shop. Specialising in fringe and underground dancefloor genres, this is one for adventurous minds.
And news from the AVA festival. You might remember them from our full column special a few weeks ago as Ireland's premier electronic music gathering, a communion of dance music, creativity and local talent. Well, this week the company announced another initiative to give back to their fans and headline hopefuls in the form of their 'Emerging Talent' competition.
A way of giving independent and fresh creatives a leg-up in the industry, the competition is broken up into three categories that emulate the tenants of AVA: DJ, Producer and Visual Artist. Each submission will be ratified and marked by a panel of judges including Timmy Stewart (The Night Institute and Extended Play), Holly Lester (Duality Trax and Free the Night), Kwame Daniels (Bounce Culture and Neo Neo), visual artist Kev Freeney and senior AVA staff. Prizes include a proper record label release of your latest work, a performance slot at AVA and a creative workshop with judge Freeney. Applicants are to submit their creative work by May 17 online – tell your friends, this could be the jump start to their career that they need. Now on to the music.
This has been a bumper week of releases from our independents, but if you follow our carefully curated guide then you'll have the cutting edge you need for every party this summer to impress your fellow punters.
Yard feat. YinYang – Ecdysis
You might remember YinYang from our 'Artist To Watch' feature. Here, she teams up with honourable mentions Yard to make a track custom-built for the 21st century. Noise rock meets alternative electronica meets rap/spoken word. A dark and sticky track that comes from the very depths of our creative sector.
Clare Sands and I Have A Tribe – Teasgal
A raw and untamed folk track that melds contemporary with the traditional, this collaborative track takes emotional and mental stock of the environmental scars left on the land by human intervention. Interwoven harmonies, keys and strings create a dream-like world of kaleidoscopic sounds.
Enola Gay – PTS.DUP
The Belfast noise act pull no punches with their latest political outing. Written in response to a sectarian attack on one of their members that left him injured, it's a fiery track that examines the disconnect between elected representatives and the constituents they claim to represent. Taking aim at one of the North's largest political parties, the quartet leave no stone unturned in their brutal rebuttal of tribal politics.
Lemonade Shoelace – I Think My Heart Is Set On You
A technicolour take on shoegaze and indie, the Newcastle-born producer and songwriter takes inspiration from the sea, the sky and his relationships for his latest track. Released following a successful stint at SXSW in Texas and ahead of his first UK headline tour, this synthy, space-age romper pulls out all the stops on its way to a psychedelic wonderland of vibrant, wavey soundscapes.