Wednesday, January 13, 2010
For my 1000th post I listed the best Irish albums of all time, and as a special celebration for my 1500th, I'm now going to list my favourite Irish Music Blogs.
And on what better day to celebrate it than the day teh nominations open for the 2010 Irish Blog Awards.
Obviously my own is my favourite, but apart from that...
(In alphabetical order)
Run by the lovely Peter Nagle, this is one of Ireland's most underrated Music Blogs. He knows everything about Irish bands and solo artists, and posts solely about the national scene. There are daily features and heaps of excellent free and legal mp3s from countless homegrown acts.
Alan Whelan's self-titled Dublin music blog focuses heavily on the gigs he has attended. He takes stunning photos at the concerts he attends - which I must say is a hell of a lot of gigs. He must earn a lot in his real job, because all those tickets must cost a bomb.
Asleep on the Compost Heap
Not updated as often as some of the other blogs here, that is never a problem. When it is updated, it's with lengthy, insightful posts. It also has a lot of personal stuff, but that's by no means a bad thing either.
A great music collective of album reviews, live reviews, interviews as well as longer features, drop-d is a site that deserves to be up there with Hot Press and State as essential large-scale Irish music websites.
With less filth than Egotastic, egoeccentric posts marvellous videos, short reviews, and is best read in short bursts (like how the posts are written themselves). A music blog for those with short attention spans, it's a worthwhile read every day.
Guesslist is one of those uber-blogs with many contributors (actually two, but it seems like loads), because of this they can focus on music all around the country - so expect live reviews from Dublin, Cork, and many other places in the backofbeyond. They also can be quite controversial sometimes, which is always good...
One can only guess what goes on behind the scenes of Heineken Music, but I'd say it's a marvellous place to work. Their team includes Allison Curtis, Jim Carroll, and Dan Hegarty and write on a large number of topics. But the most important thing - the excellent gigs they hold around the country.
The print magazine will always get the best content, but the website itself is also a fairly good source of live news. Best of all, however, is the excellent competitions they run.
A site focusing on the best live shows Limerick has to offer (as well as others in Galway and other venues), this blog posts fantastic live reviews as well as some wonderful bootlegs. Anyone who loves Ryan Adams is good by me.
Recently redesigned and now much more easy to navigate, Kilkenny Music does exactly what it says on the tin. It promotes local acts as well as highlighting shows in the Marble City. A surprisingly good number of great acts actually play in Kilkenny each year, so if you live anywhere nearby, this blog is worth checking out.
Mp3 Hugger posts a lot of great Indie mp3s from around the world. And that's it really. But isn't that enough? It sure is. Expect to find some great new artists alongside new songs from legendary bands. On and what's more, their label IndieCater Records releases some fantastic albums and EP for a minimal fee.
Imagine if BBC's Through the Keyhole or RTE's Showhouse was about bands... Well, this is exactly that. Musical Rooms shows you where the magic happens and describes how artists go about making masterpieces. It's a marvellously insightful blog and a great diversion from mp3s and news.
Ireland's Best Music Blogger three years running, as well as last year's Best Music Website winner at the Irish Web Awards. Does any more need to be said? Oh, alright... He posts news, tracks, as well as mp3s. His podcasts are excellent, but the best feature in my opinion is the monthly MAP mixtape. Wonderful stuff.
A wonderful idea for a blog, where the writer plays an album for his father (the Nick of the title), and lets you know how he gets on. This leads to some highly entertaining reviews. Genius.
On the Record
Poked and prodded by Jim Carroll of the Irish Times, On the Record gets more responses and comments than any other Irish music blog. This is helped by the high-profile nature of it, but moreso by Jim's fantastic writing and his wonderful musical knowledge. He's also the first to know of big gigs, so it's a mustread.
Run Into Thunder
The second, more loved child of Nay from Hot Press's Off Her Rocker blog, is filled with fantastic insights and lengthy pieces on all things Irish. She also highlights upcoming acts from Ireland and abroad. She may actually be a much better writer free from the constraints of having a magazine behind her.
Public support saved both Road Records, but unfortunately was not enough to save State Magazine. No longer in print form, it has continued fantastically online, with great features from a large number of writers, it's also a place where Nialler9 can lay off the cool and enjoy more mainstream music with the rest of us.
Now an RTE 2XM DJ, Sweet Oblivion has a fantastic taste in music, and posts regular playlists showing such. She also writes long articles on the industry, such as her excellent response to OtR's Irish Album Review "outrage" and the demise of Cork independent music shop Plug'd.
Tim posts a lot about stuff I haven't heard of before. After listening though, I am usually converted. So after heading over there, you'll no doubt be a convert too. And make sure you watch out for his fantastic competitions. You may get a free gig out of it!
Looking for live news? Here is one place to go, Thrill Pier regularly posts news of live shows, as well as videos from artists you really should get to know better. As well as that, Ian is an all-round nice guy.
As well as being a great place to discuss music , Thumped is a fine repository of album and live news. There's also some great reviews here and there too. But the forum is what keeps us all coming back.
No doubt I forgot a good few. If I did, let me know, and I'll add it to this list.