Mark Duggan – Run Out the Distance🎸

Release date july 16th, 2021
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Mark Duggan is a singer-songwriter from Waterford, Ireland. From the age of nine years old he has been writing songs and playing guitar after borrowing his cousin’s guitar and learning some chords off of his father. At twelve he began recording his songs using an old USB headset microphone and has been producing his own music ever since. Over the years he has developed a sound which combines folk and indie with electronic elements, complete with clever lyricism and thoughtful songwriting. He is inspired by the writing of Bruce Springsteen, Joni Mitchel, Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen. He is also influenced by a number of artists known for their willingness to play with sound such as Gorillaz and U2. Over the years he has also learned to play mandolin, bass and harmonica along with gaining more experience in recording engineering and production. As well as writing for his own releases he has also co-written the song The Road on Irish artist Dunluvly’s first EP along with performing at gigs with Dunluvly and queer-pop band Babylamb where he has been able to maintain an audience’s absolute attention for quiet songs and have them dancing around and singing along by the end. 

In September of 2018 he released his debut single Hey Blue, a song with a catchy melody and riff on top of a bed of guitars and percussion. The lyrics are an optimistic look towards the first night of the weekend where the chance of romance is bubbling away. The song has an infectious character that has kept it consistent in live gig setlists. 

In June of 2019 he released an EP titled Long Way Home which was also his final year project in college. The EP consists of twelve songs that join together to create one cohesive twenty minute piece of music. The story follows a protagonist who is making his way home to his partner after being away working for an extended period of time and what occurs on the drive home with a focus on radio. The EP focuses on the theme of longing, bouncing between multiples genres, styles and tones all while maintaining its cohesive nature.

In February of 2020 he released the single As The Sun Hits The Day Down which is a simple acoustic track that takes its influences from the folk traditions of songs utilising multiple verses to tell the story within the song. A guitar riff and the hook of the title closing each verse provide the song with a momentum that carries the track to its final note.

Later that year he began the release of his next EP Just For The Night by releasing the single Promenade Firework Show. The indie-rock tune featured layered guitars, a retro drum machine, and a nostalgic, 80’s rock feel. The song took influence from a memory of summer nights spent by the sea as a teenage applied to the context of a couple who have hit a rocky moment in their relationship. The song uses a lot of pairings in its composition to mirror the pair of the couple. The use of a drum machine and Mark’s new telecaster sound was inspired by Bruce Springsteen’s home demos from 1983 and showed the first glimpse of the sound that would be essential to the EP.

At the start of 2021 the next single off the EP Lullaby (I’ll Be There) was released. The song once again made use of a drum loop with the base of a simple descending chord progression and layers of sound textures. The song is about someone trying to comfort their partner who is struggling to sleep. The narrator promises to be there for their partner even if they cannot necessarily makes things better. Both the emotions of the vocal and the intensity of the instrumental build towards a climatic slide guitar solo which fades away to a glistening sound which represents morning breaking through and a bit of hope prevailing.

The next month the rest of the EP was released with tracks Just For The Night, Not Sure, Truly Beautiful Thing and Desperation Blues added to the singles. Not Sure follows the singles by being built on a drum machine loop and making use of a telecaster sound while the other three songs are acoustic based tracks with the likes of harmonium, mandolin, tambourine and organ used to flesh out the instrumental. The EP as a whole has thematic link between songs focusing on the connections we make in life with each song having a specific moment of this on show. The EP has gone on to be Duggan’s most successful release so far with features in Irish music media from HotPress to 2Xfm and a much further reach in audience than any of his previous releases. 

On July 16th, he will release a new single Run Out The Distance which is being paired with the b-side Dried Up Lovesick Blues (Swings And Roundabouts). The new single is a return to the use of a live drum sound which was recorded in February of last year. The song has been rewritten for over a year before being committed to the final recording. The song began with the title and the simple chord progression on an acoustic guitar. The opening lines had initially been part of an alternate version of As The Sun Hits The Day Down while the rest of the lyrics came out of multiple drafts taking up nearly ten pages in Duggan’s notebook full of completely different ideas or single word changes in a line. The song is about a character who has reached a moment of stasis in their life. They are trying to take stock of their position in life with a thought to what has been, what is and what will hopefully be. The narrator is trying to find their space in the world where they can make a good life and despite coming up short so far there is a sense of pushing through until they get there. There is a hope in the song that isn’t willing to give in too soon. The song has a laid back rhythm as the live drums carry along  a collection of strumming acoustic guitars and a leaping bass line. The song had originally been intended to only have acoustic guitars but eventually electric guitars were added to give the song some more grit and punch. They also propel the song along and prevent it from becoming too lackadaisical. The harmonica sound that has been prominent in nearly all of Duggan’s career returns to fill instrumental sections of the song. The vocal performance matches the sentiment of the lyrics and the use of double tracking adds an extra reach to the chorus which builds to the emotional climax of the narrator committing to trying to keep moving forward and continue the search.

The b-side Dried Up Lovesick Blues (Swings And Roundabouts) is a simple blues song that builds over the course of three verses from a single electric guitar strumming gently to stomping bass drum and overdriven chords. The lyrics tell of a relationship that has fizzled out but not yet ended and is told with a resignation of the situation that fades away at the end of the song in a similar way to the relationship. 


Jo

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Toby Charlesworth – To Say Goodbye🎤

Release date 26th March, 2021
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Toby is a 23 year old indie folk/pop songwriter from London.

About his new single, Toby says

“This song carries a lot of meaning for me. It asks the question “is there an easy way to say goodbye?” In short, the answer is no, there never really is. I’m sure everyone at some point in their lives has had to say goodbye. That could be saying goodbye to a lover or a friend or even your pet goldfish! What I mean is that no matter what the situation, it still carries personal meaning for each individual. In my case, the lyrics apply to losing a girl I loved, but also more importantly, to the loss of my best friend to suicide. I hope that this song can help anyone who has been in a tough circumstance, and to understand that the struggle is all just part of the healing process. I wrote the lyrics during Lockdown at a particularly low point with the help of one of my best friends. I contacted a couple of my other friends to help with adding a bass guitar, cello and drums into the track, and the song just developed from there. It definitely became a much more impactful song then I had expected, and although it may seem like a “sad song”, really the chorus conveys that sense of hope, “find your path and stay strong”. But that’s the best part about collaborating with musicians, each perspective adds more and more detail to the music. It’s like a piece of art you know, people say a painting is never truly finished, well it’s the same with music, there’s always a new angle or a new layer you can add to create a track, and only when you decide to stop tweaking the details then the final product is produced. The whole experience of creating the single has been great, and after a long time waiting, I’m excited for people to listen. This is my Debut Single, and I hope that people can really relate to it on a greater scale and find some sort of comfort and inspiration behind the lyrics.”


Jo

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Jen Ella – Eyes for you🎤

Release date 12th March, 2021
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Cork-born and Glasgow-based musician/songwriter Jen Ella has just released her new song, Eyes for you. Eyes for you is a song about recognising your self-worth, moving on and knowing what’s good for you. It is like a letter that Jen Ella decided to write to herself about self-development and see the good in your values after hard times.

Jo

KÎND – Piercing Light🥁

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KÎND is a five piece melodic progressive rock band made up of members from all over Ireland. Lead by songwriter Matthew Redmond, the band is made up of Ryan Mclelland on drums, Jane Patterson on lead vocals, Charlie McCarthy on bass and Eoin Butterfield on guitar and keys. Their latest release, ‘Piercing Light’ was recorded in Sun Studios with local producer, Thomas McGovern aka, founder of Devoy Records. McGovern works to showcase Dublin’s up and coming artists by creating an immersive audible and visual experience that brings the magic of a live show straight to your screen. As an Irish progressive rock band, KÎND strives to create the unique utilising a combination of heavy guitar parts, unusual chord changes and stacked harmonies while still maintaining strong melodies throughout. This live performance marks the band’s second release after their debut single of ‘Fix Of Dopamine’ which was released in March of 2020 and the band has a slew of upcoming releases for the remainder of 2021.


Jo

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Point Taken- Lullaby For Leeches🎸

Release date 24th February 2021
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Point Taken are a three piece Alt/Indie band from Limerick, Ireland. Jared Nadin (Vocals/Bass) Jacob Woulfe (Guitar/Bass) and Evan Berry (Drums) have been making music since 2019. Their debut EP “The Static Windup” was released in March 2020 just as the Pandemic arrived in Ireland.
They spent the following lockdowns developing a heavier tone as well as writing, recording, and
mixing their next project, due for release in 2021. Influences include Frank Carter, Silversun Pickups, and Dance Gavin Dance.

Their upcoming single “Lullaby for Leeches” marks the beginning of this heavier sound while trying to express the bands frustration towards the pandemic in Ireland and the impact it has had on the live events industry.


Jo

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Fly The Nest- Old Street Lover🎸

Release date 12th February 2021
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Singer/ songwriter Fly the Nest is set to release a cinematic new single, “Old Street Lover.” The song features a driving beat, wailing guitars, and Fly the Nests’ signature wide, cinematic soundscape. Rhythmic guitars and Fly the Nest’s powerful vocals carry the fierce, energetic song. 

Fly the Nest says, “This song is about having a connection with someone that’s ultimately lost. Though it hurts to see it end, you really do wish them the best and hope they find what they’re looking for.”

The verses of the song tell the story of the day that it all comes to an end. They outline hard conversations that are had and looking back on shared memories. The narrator knows that they have to let it go. The uplifting chorus expresses hope that the other person finds happiness, comfort, and satisfaction with what they decide to do. 

Though you’re parting ways, you still see so much potential in the other person, heard in the lines, “you’ve got it!” And though you’ll miss them, you genuinely still believe in them and their dreams. Maybe you’ll even find your way back to each other one day. 

The song was produced and recorded by Peter Doherty in Tyrone, NI. 

Dublin native Fly the Nest (Stephen Cooper) started playing music at a young age, performing in various bands before starting solo project Fly the Nest, a name inspired by the many adventures music has led him on. As well as writing and releasing his own music, Stephen also writes for sync, and says that writing for film and TV has opened up another facet of his creativity. Stephen now spends his time between Ireland and Denmark, and gigs regularly across Scandinavia. 2021 is proving to be another big year for Stephen, who is known for wide, cinematic songs and precise songwriting.


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Jo

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MASK- Get On Your Knees🎸

Release date 8th February 2021
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https://masktheband.com/

Belfast Blues Rockers MASK are kicking the doors in and raising the decibels with their new
single ‘Get On Your Knees’. Made up of ingredients of Martin Luther King, blistering drums, and
throttling fuzz guitars – this ferocious track is bound to be a contender for rock-stomper of the year.


Having suffered a loss in Belfast late last year, MASK leader H Humphrey decided to escape
civilisation and left for Peru. Feeling enlightened on his return, he approached producer Michael
Mormecha and asked if he could come in and make a new MASK record. Though his new
studio, Tree Song Studios, wasn’t finished and was little more than a building site, having learned
of H’s loss, he agreed and they set to work! ‘Get On Your Knees’, has an utterly unique feel as a
result, literally hanging microphones across wooden planks and makeshift ceilings, capturing a
sense of unequivocal power and rawness!

Leaning heavily on their blues-retro-rock tendencies, the new single is instantly comparable to the early sound of The Black Keys and The White Stripes to the more millennial-glam-rock feel of
stadium-act MUSE.


According to MASK, ‘Get On Your Knees’ is about awakening the beast that lies in all of us and
embracing our inner Viking!”


The rock duo are led by H Humphrey (guitar/vocals -from Belfast) along with lifelong
friend, Craig Coppock (guitar/vocals from Liverpool), combining to make up a band who are the
antithesis of your typical rock stars – they describe themselves as unapologetically un-cool BUT
always manage to release exciting music that breaks the mould of the everyday indie band.


Jo

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Hot Juice- Second Wave🎸

Release date 4th February 2021
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https://hotjuiceband.com/epk/

‘Second Wave’ was written while frontman Shay had COVID-19. Inspired by the event, ‘Second Wave‘ was and produced and recorded during lockdown.

Rock duo Hot Juice consisting of Shay Barker (guitar/vox), Harvey Dellar Crone (drums) have been branding their sound on Jerseys rear end with a summer of loud gigs and new tracks. Recent headliners of the Made In Jersey stage at Weekender festival as well as BBC Music Introducing’s track of the week with their latest single ‘Small Town Blues’, these boys are guaranteed to get you up and throwing yourself about to their in-your-face beats and heavy riffs.

Released Debut album ‘This Is What You Want’ with the BBC Intro CI dedication a show as a album launch party playing the whole album with the band talking through each song.

“Hot Juice are a band that bring huge energy when they perform live. On top of that, their powerful sound translates into the recording studio and their debut album “This Is What You Want” is an absolute smash. They make it very easy for me to support them through BBC Music Introducing and as if that wasn’t enough – they are really sound guys as well.” Tim Hunter, BBC Music Introducing in the Channel Islands.


Jo

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Hot Juice- What You Gunna Do Now?🎸

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hotjuiceband@gmail.com

https://hotjuiceband.com/epk/

Rock duo Hot Juice consisting of Shay Barker (guitar/vox), Harvey Dellar Crone (drums) have been branding their sound on Jerseys rear end with a summer of loud gigs and new tracks. Recent headliners of the Made In Jersey stage at Weekender festival as well as BBC Music Introducing’s track of the week with their latest single ‘Small Town Blues’, these boys are guaranteed to get you up and throwing yourself about to their in-your-face beats and heavy riffs.

Released Debut album ‘This Is What You Want’ with the BBC Intro CI dedication a show as a album launch party playing the whole album with the band talking through each song.

“Hot Juice are a band that bring huge energy when they perform live. On top of that, their powerful sound translates into the recording studio and their debut album “This Is What You Want” is an absolute smash. They make it very easy for me to support them through BBC Music Introducing and as if that wasn’t enough – they are really sound guys as well.” Tim Hunter, BBC Music Introducing in the Channel Islands.


Jo

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Toby Charlesworth- Acoustic EP🎸

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Toby is a 22 year old indie folk/pop singer songwriter from London. 

Toby says, “Music for me has always been about connecting with people. It started out as a connection with my dad when he gave me my first guitar at 14 – a guitar I still play to this day.As time went on music brought me new connections with new people and through it I built my own family – a family that still stands with me to this day. Ultimately what music brought me turned out to be not only a connection to my family, New and old, but a connection to myself. A connection that I want to share.”
He goes on to say, “My music has grown over the years and I’m finally at a place where I feel I can start releasing it. Music for me is a way to cope with the issues in my life, and also a way to celebrate the great moments too. A lot of my songs are written about either love, heartbreak or losing someone. I feel like people relate to all of those things and we can’t deny the emotions they create, and hopefully my songs are able to make those same emotions rise up for my listeners and help them to confront their emotions head on. ”
“Mental health has been a huge thing for me recently as I lost my best friend last year to suicide, many of my songs echo my relation with him. And my music is purely dedicated to carrying on the work we created together. I’ve recently released a home made, self produced EP on SoundCloud, hopefully this can give everyone a taste of what my music is aiming for. I’m currently planning to release 3 singles on all platforms in the near future, with a higher quality of music production, and I’m currently recording with my producer in Tottenham. “


Jo

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