Focus

Berating Bystanders Berating Bystanders Jake Tiernan Derry band Touts' rapid-fire sociopolitical commentary resonates with a despondent generation, writes Jake Tiernan, in the second review from our new Music Writer Mentoring Scheme, supported by Galway City and Galway County Arts Offices.
A Future for Irish Music A Future for Irish Music Toner Quinn How can we ensure that we have the infrastructure to support all Irish music into the future? Why have we not achieved this already? In an essay written to mark the twentieth anniversary of the music and arts station RTÉ Lyric FM, Toner Quinn, Editor of the Journal of Music, asks the question: what is holding us back?
Skating Around New Audiences Skating Around New Audiences Adrian Smith Crash Ensemble continue to reach out to new listeners, most recently in a concert dedicated to music related to skateboarding. Adrian Smith reviews the film and music event which featured new work by Sam Perkin and Jennifer Walshe.
Playing for an Inside-Out World Playing for an Inside-Out World James Fleming In the first review from our new Music Writer Mentoring Scheme, supported by Galway City and Galway County Arts Offices, James Fleming reviews a performance by Sarah Nicolls of her new political work 'Twelve Years'. Presented by Galway Jazz Festival at the Mick Lally Theatre on 29 March, the composition by the British pianist and composer is a direct call for action at a time of crisis.
Adventures in the New Music Fringe Adventures in the New Music Fringe Adrian Smith The Music Current contemporary music festival – which took place last week in Dublin – has a radicalism in curation that can give listeners a real feeling of discovery. Adrian Smith reviews the four days and asks: can it grow its 'fringe' status in the Irish new music scene?
How Sounding the Feminists Put Music and Gender in the Spotlight How Sounding the Feminists Put Music and Gender in the Spotlight Adrian Smith In less than two years, the Sounding the Feminists movement has changed the conversation in the Irish contemporary music scene and put the issue of gender equality and composers firmly on the musical map, but, asks Adrian Smith, can it have a long-term impact without more support from the music community?
Some People are Frightened Some People are Frightened Don O'Mahony The second Cork Sound Fair took place last week. Spread over four days (28–31 March), the festival displays the fascinating diversity of Irish electronic music. Don O'Mahony reviews a selection of performances from Saturday night and Sunday.
The Newest of the New: An Interview with Fergal Dowling of Music Current The Newest of the New: An Interview with Fergal Dowling of Music Current Pursuing the latest in contemporary music sounds is key to the focus of Music Current festival, which begins next week in Dublin. Artistic Director Fergal Dowling spoke to the Journal of Music about the ethos of the event, current trends in music, and the ensembles performing this year.
Uncomfortable Story Beautifully Told Uncomfortable Story Beautifully Told Brendan Finan Irish National Opera's current production of 'Madama Butterfly', exploring themes of exploitation and naïveté, works extremely well – sometimes disconcertingly so, writes Brendan Finan.
‘If we take action, hope will be everywhere’: An Interview with Pianist and Composer Sarah Nicolls ‘If we take action, hope will be everywhere’: An Interview with Pianist and Composer Sarah Nicolls Sarah Nicolls has composed a new work inspired by the announcements on climate change last autumn and the activism of Greta Thunberg. She spoke to The Journal of Music about the impetus for the work and being so politically direct with an audience.

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