Scene and heard: Electric Picnic, Guinness Cork Jazz Festival & IFI Documentary Festival

MUSIC NEWS: Despite still being in the midst of an extensive Joshua Tree tour, U2’s release of a new song earlier this week shows the band are not planning to stand still any time soon.

Scene and heard: Electric Picnic, Guinness Cork Jazz Festival & IFI Documentary Festival

‘The Blackout’ was revealed via the band’s Facebook page on Wednesday, and it looks like a proper single will be released next week.

Both tracks are from the forthcoming Songs Of Experience, a record that had been expected last year before Bono and co diverted into their retrospective tour.

Meanwhile, Game of Thrones fans may notice a familiar face in Kasabian’s latest video. Lena Headey, who plays Cersei Lannister, has a leading role in the promo for ‘Ill Ray (The King).

As pop stars pledge support for flood victims in Texas, they’ve served as a reminder that the Lone Star State is about way more than oil wells and the Bush family. Houston alone has given us Kenny Rogers and ZZ Top, while Beyoncé has a claim to being the city’s most famous female.

Finally, members of hip hop pioneers Public Enemy look about to become very public enemies with the filing of a lawsuit by Flavor Flav against leading man Chuck D. As ever, the spat comes down to finances, with reporting the suit refers to “the usurpation of money and property rights”.


Electric Picnic casts its large shadow of the Irish music landscape for the next few days, with thousands heading to Stradbally to see the likes of The xx (tonight), A Tribe Called Quest (tomorrow) and Chaka Khan (Sunday).

Grumbles about the bill have pointed to a lack of a Blur-sized headliner, but there’s still more than enough to ensure a weekend of fun no matter what your music tastes.

Looking further ahead, the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival (Oct 27-30) has released its lineup for what will be its 40th year anniversary. The programme looks solid rather than spectacular, with the Everyman again catering for traditional jazz-heads, and Triskel also presenting some genre-bending quality.

In the Everyman, Kenny Garrett is probably the best-known name, and has a pedigree that has involved collaborations with the likes of Miles Davis and Art Blakey.

Quercus lead the charge at Triskel, with June Tabor providing the vocals for a group who have a foot in both the jazz and folk camps. At the pop end of the scale, Imelda May plays the Opera House.


The IFI Documentary Festival always has a strong programme, and this year’s event (Sept 27-Oct 1) will include a screening of Kevin Roche: The Quiet Architect, a profile of the 95-year-old Irish-American who is still working. Among his better-known buildings are the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Convention Centre, Dublin.

Other highlights include a fly-on-the-wall portrait of a busy maternity hospital in Manilla; and Makala, the Cannes-winning tale of a Congolese charcoal-maker.

In Cork, Triskel’s Stanley Kubrick season continues tomorrow with the Irish-made Barry Lyndon.


The appearance by Russian superstar pianist Boris Berezovsky at the NCH in aid of Childvision has been rescheduled for September 10, after forest fires in France scuppered his attempts to make it to Dublin in July.

On Sunday, the Curtis Auditorium at the School of Music in Cork will be hosting SinfoNua, with David Brophy conducting Mia Cooper, Matthew Wylie and more than 50 other musicians.

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