Belfast Telegraph

Essential Gigs

The Island Arts Centre in Lisburn becomes rock central tomorrow night as three of Ulster's most exciting, hard-edged bands take to the stage, each bringing their own, unique musical style to proceedings.

Antrim foursome And So I Watch You From Afar are unusual in so far as they are purely an instrumental band, although anyone who has witnessed one of their amazing live shows will know that their music speaks for itself.

Londonderry's Fighting With Wire have long been hyped as the next big thing in Irish music and their recent signing to Atlantic Records confirms that the speculation was well justified.

The Lisburn date is one of the last gigs they'll be playing in Northern Ireland for a while as they embark on a tour of UK and Ireland next week, to coincide with the release of their new single, Everyone Needs A Nemesis on May 5. Completing the line-up on Saturday are Strictly Hardcore Dancing who will be treating their hometown audience to some uncompromising metalcore, with a lethal dose of synth-heavy electronica thrown in for good measure.

Saturday night at the Spring & Airbrake sees Belfast 'indieists' The Vals back on stage for the second time this month — a few weeks ago they were supporting Ocean Colour Scene at a sell-out show whereas this time, they're topping the bill.

Other bands confirmed for the weekend show are folk punks The Hellfire Club and relative newcomers Delirium Tremens who will be treating the audience to a selection of tracks from their recently released, self-titled EP.

Next Thursday, also at The Spring and Airbrake, it's the turn of Cashier No 9 and Robyn G Shiels to do the honours at the pocket-friendly, weekly showcase Club Destroid, where the drinks are cheap, admission's free and the music's priceless.

Anyone approaching middle age might be very surprised to hear that Colenso Parade have a new EP out — sorry to disappoint you, folks, but this band are from Omagh and are barely out of their teens.

Coincidentally sharing their band name with an alternative rock band who were gigging around Belfast in the early Eighties, these guys might inhabit the same Stranmillis street as their namesakes, but any similarity ends there.

The Tyrone quartet's sound has been likened to The Libertines, with a dash of The Clash, but you can judge for yourself as they join Desert Rain and Ablespacer for a special EP launch show, Up In The Attic at Auntie Annie's, next Tuesday night.

SO:NI's fourth Lisburn show also takes place on Thursday at Hague's Bar in the mini-city and features performances from rocksters The Black Tokens and Hoax. Doors 8.30pm, admission £3.


From Belfast Telegraph