We’re still a couple months away from the first music festival of the summer, but that’s what the wet and windy first couple months of the year are for: Constantly refreshing the Electric Picnic website, scanning Twitter for additions to Body & Soul, looking at your bank balance and weeping because you might not be able to scrape together the cash for Castlepalooza.
So how do the lineups stack up against each other. The daddy of the Irish festival circuit, Electric Picnic, is easily the most expensive at over €230, plus Ticketmaster fees. The initial lineup is a little ho-hum, with headliners LCD Soundsystem predicted by everyone and their mum (who probably saw James Murphy at the second Picnic in 2005) — though ‘All My Friends’ will probably be the moment of the weekend.
The other headliners, Lana Del Rey, New Order, and Chemical Brothers hit these shores often enough that it felt a little anticlimactic — though the surprise inclusion of Canadian indie-rock godfathers Broken Social Scene should ensure plenty more ‘Anthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl’.
Mitchelstown’s Indiependence (€119 plus TM fees), featuring Bressie’s reunited Blizzards, Editors, and the Kooks, looks straight out of 2007.
Castlepalooza (€134 plus fees) has partnered with Aiken for its 10th birthday and returns to Charleville Castle, Tullamore, with a doozy of a lineup that includes Caribou, Cat Power, Jurassic 5, and Romaire.
However, again it’s Body & Soul (from €149.50 plus fees) that looks unmissable: Santigold, St Germain, Mercury Rev, and Floating Points alone are enough to tick every box for festival season. Plus, the vibes man, the vibes…
In more immediate music events, folk legends Dónal Lunny and Paddy Glackin play Sirius Arts Centre in Cobh tomorrow (tickets €20 or €27 for train return from Kent Station). Marc O’Reilly has been making waves in Europe in recent months and live he is one of the most engaging Irish acts around. Act fast if you want to grab a ticket to his show at Cyprus Avenue tomorrow at 8pm, €12). At the same venue on Sunday, dub/reggae pioneer Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry and full band perform Super Ape in full alongside other hits as part of the album’s 40th anniversary.(tickets — €22.50)
At Thirty Four, Lennox St, Dublin, tomorrow, to coincide with International Women’s Day, photographer Ruth Medjber and journalist Louise Bruton launch their Women of Notes/Mná na Notaí series celebrating some of Ireland’s most prominent and successful female musicians. Richard Proffitt opens a show, entitled Hold The Candle To Your Eye/Light The Criss-Cross On Your Chest, at the Centre Gallery in Sirius Arts Centre on March 10. A new body of work, he says it acts as a point of personal arrival and departure.
Re-evaluating teenage drawings, discarded ideas, and childhood memory, Proffitt uses visual, written, and aural media to create a ritualistic temple of history that summons, celebrates, and annexes a recent past.
London Has Fallen tries to pack as many terror-movie cliches into one Gerard Butler-sized hour and a half. Expect bad Russian accents from the bad guys.
The Coen Brothers’ latest effort, Hail Caesar!, tanked at the US box office, but with George Clooney and Josh Brolin heading an all-star cast, how can you resist?
Youth and Trumbo (with the Oscar-nominated Bryan Cranston, above) are playing at the Triskel Arts Centre from Sunday to Wednesday.
The French Film Festival also kicks off on March 6. Opening film Mustang (Gate Cinema, 7pm) was also up for an Oscar and looks like essential viewing.
Cork Opera House brings Jason Byrne and Pat Shortt to town tonight and tomorrow, respectively.
The former’s show, 20 Years a Clown, should prove as riotous as all the rest that he’s (dis)graced us with down the years.
Elsewhere in Cork tomorrow, Colm O’Regan of this parish takes to the City Limits stage. Expect the Irish Mammies to take up the front few rows.