Gigs of the week: July 15-21


Screen Shot 2016-07-14 at 19.49.39DAVE CLARKE, Opium Rooms, Dublin, tonight, €17.50-20
We nearly lost the Baron of Techno on Monday — he was in the back of a car that crashed and crumpled to bits in Serbia on the way back from Exit festival.

Amazingly, Clarke picked himself off the ground where he’d just been flung from the car, hitting a motorway lamp post at 100km/h. He then flagged another car, made his flight and went to hospital in his adopted home city of Amsterdam — getting straight outta Dodge.

Clarke’s relentless mission to bang out techno every single weekend means he took no time off. And he’s asked people not to hug him tonight as he’s “still a bit tender”.

He’ll say it’s what anyone would’ve done, but I doubt it — no one grafts harder than Dave Clarke —a true techno legend and pioneer.

Thankfully, it’ll only be our heads that’ll be a bit tender tonight, as Clarke tears through a few hours of uncompromising techno, maybe some electro and probably the biggest Dublin cheer he’s got in years — one of sheer relief.

Screen Shot 2016-07-14 at 19.50.26The Souljazz Orchestra, Sugar Club, Dublin, tonight, €12.50-15
The name makes them sound like a dodgy fusion band you’d see at a community festival, but Canadian combo the Souljazz Orchestra are up for a cosmic jazz and analogue funk odyssey.

Weaving Afrobeat, Latin, dub and Caribbean rhythms, horns and chants, they’ve well worth the Juno Award nominations in Canada.

Support is from Dublin-based Manden Express, who mix traditional west African styles with hypnotic Afrobeat rhythms.

Screen Shot 2016-07-14 at 19.51.05ELVIS COSTELLO & THE IMPOSTERS, Festival Big Top, Galway, tonight, €54.15 & Iveagh Gardens, Dublin, tomorrow, €59 & SSE Arena, Belfast, Tuesday, £33-39.50
If you missed the boat on sold-out Longitude and fancy something a bit more refined for an outdoor buzz, new wave legend Elvis Costello is your only man.

Earlier on this year he was playing solo gigs mixing spoken word and stories about his 40-year career in music – coinciding with his memoir Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink, but tonight he’s with the Imposters, so it’ll be a bit more raucous.

Just checking the setlist for his Liverpool gig this week — 30 songs in about two-and-a-half hours, delving into all eras, so if ever there was a time to see him over the last decade, this is it.

Screen Shot 2016-07-14 at 19.51.46GAMA BOMB, On the Rox, Dublin, tonight, €10 & Empire, Belfast, tomorrow, £12
“It’s time to thrash like it’s ’86” proclaim metallers Gama Bomb on their take the piss cracker Bullet Belt.

The cult Irish act are almost like a thrash metal preservation society with lightning riffs, double bass kicks and slam solos – but with a wicked humorous streak that hits the bullseye and a White Zombie-style obsession with B movie tropes.

They’re also the only band to release a 1916 centenary song about killer robots, and in Beverly Hills Robocop, the best metal song title you’ll ever hear.

Their support bands also thrash like it’s 86, with names like Animator (shocked it’s not already taken), Wardomizer and, wait for it, Rabid Bitch of the North.

Screen Shot 2016-07-14 at 19.52.39Prince – A Tribute To The Music, The Academy, Dublin, Thursday, €17.50
Proof we haven’t quite finished drying our eyes over the loss of Prince, here’s another tribute night to bring on the Purple Rain.

This one’s a departure from the cathartic club nights that happened in the days after — it’s a collection of dearly beloved Irish musicians gathered together to unite under the purple banner — all in aid of the Irish Cancer Society.

There’ll be a 12-piece house band called the True Funk Soldiers, with slots by Paul Noonan and Dave Geraghty of Bell X1, Steve Wall of The Stunning, Bronagh Gallagher, Wyvern Lingo, Gavin Glass and Roisin O.

  • Originally published in Irish Daily Star