sat 05/12/2020

Dublin

Album: Fontaines DC – A Hero's Death

Be careful what you wish for. Turns out the dream that most bands yearn for isn't all it's cracked up to be. Fontaines DC's debut album, Dogrel went large (and won a Mercury Prize nomination and BBC 6 Music's Album of the Year). They toured like...

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EP: Imelda May - Slip of the Tongue

Dublin’s Imelda May, who made her name as a superlative performer of high-energy rockabilly in a way that reflected the music’s partly Irish roots, has just released her first poetry recordings: nine punchy, moving, sometimes humourous and well-...

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Hilary Fannin: The Weight of Love review – unravelling knotty lives

The relationship between Joe, Robin and Ruth is far from your average love triangle. On the face of it, Robin loves Ruth, but after introducing her to his charismatic friend Joe – an artist and renegade – their affair reroutes all of their lives...

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Album: Aoife Nessa Frances - Land of No Junction

What a lovely surprise. A debut album with its own sensibility that’s come out of the blue. Aoife Nessa Frances is from Dublin and the terrific Land of No Junction – the title comes from a mistaken hearing of Llandudno Junction – signals the arrival...

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The Intelligence Park, Linbury Theatre review - baroque to the point of obscurity

Could Gerald Barry's first opera really be as enervating in the Royal Opera House's Linbury Theatre as it seemed nearly 30 years ago at its Almeida Music Festival premiere? Since then we've become accustomed to wonder at, even love, the Barry style...

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Animals review - who decides when the party's over?

This is a scathing and heartfelt coming of age drama, though not of the adolescent kind. Tyler and Laura are soulmates and flatmates, two single women blazing a riotous trail of booze, sex and drugs through the bars and basements of Dublin. But with...

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Spice Girls, Croke Park, Dublin review - uncomplicated fun

They’re back and they’re looking and sounding good – and Spice Girls mania took over Dublin’s city centre for several hours before their concert yesterday. Hotels were booked out, every other woman I passed in the street was wearing a Spice Girls T-...

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Tana French: The Wych Elm review - a lucky man and his downfall

A Tana French crime novel is never just a thriller. Probably more acclaimed in the USA than the UK (she gets rave reviews in the New Yorker and the New York Times) French always transcends the genre, stylistically, emotionally, atmospherically.Her...

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The Plough and the Stars, Lyric Hammersmith review - trenchant reimagining of Irish classic

Sean Holmes is artistic director of the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith, yet his revival of this seminal Irish play has taken two years to come home to him. The production was commissioned by the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, to mark the centenary of the Easter...

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Emil Nolde: Colour Is Life, National Gallery of Ireland review - boats, dancers, flowers

Colours had meanings for Emil Nolde. “Yellow can depict happiness and also pain. Red can mean fire, blood or roses; blue can mean silver, the sky or a storm.” As the son of a German-Frisian father and a Schleswig-Dane mother, Nolde was raised in a...

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Roddy Doyle: Smile review - return of the repressed

Although he made his name with the generally upbeat grooves and licks of his Barrytown Trilogy, Roddy Doyle has often played Irish family and social life as a blues full of sorrow and regret. In his Booker-winning Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, a bitter...

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National Gallery of Ireland review - bigger and better

The marvellous National Gallery of Ireland, founded in the 1860s, has opened its doors to its brilliantly revamped, updated and expanded galleries. As a spectacular bonus in its opening summer, Vermeer and Masters of Genre Painting reposes in the...

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