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The Lion Still Roars

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1986 in Ireland. Phil Lynott, one of the single greatest artists we ever gave the world dies of pneumonia. 36,000 people emigrate, Jack Charlton arrives in Ireland to manage our national team building up national hope and pride and two giant pandas, Ming Ming and Ping Ping arrive in Dublin Zoo. There is also a stirring of a different kind in inner city Dublin. Aslan release their demo single, This Is. It garners national airplay and pretty soon it becomes 2fm’s longest running play listed single.
The band went on to tour the UK and by the end of the year they became Hot Press’s most promising new band and are signed to EMI. Two years later, they record their debut album, Feel No Shame, which rocketed straight to number one in the Irish charts, occupying the top spot for weeks. However, the band fell apart before the recording of their second album and singer Christy Dignam left the band. They tried to recruit a new singer, but as drummer Alan stated, “It was like U2 trying to go on without Bono.” The band subsequently split up in 1988.
They reformed in 1993, landed a record deal with BMG and released a single that would catapult them to super stardom, Crazy World. They went on to record four more albums, the most recent of which being Nudie Books and Frenchies (I know right, I actually know the name and have listened to the album, look at me being prepared, heaven forbid). This new album is quite good and evokes memories of inner city Dublin, which is quite a feat. Seeing as I was two when the band formed and I lived in Enniscorthy.
The band recently played to a packed house in The Castle Venue, Enniscorthy. A venue that given the right bands and backing could be used to great potential. Lovely spot. The boys, well Christy and guitarist Billy gave a funny honest interview before the show. They talks about life, love and basically getting by. Christy summed it up best, “It’s like this, as long as you can pay your rent, your leccy, your food bill and have 20 John Player Blue, you really have everything you need.”
The support act The Mike Scala Band played a tight thirty minute set to an appreciative local crowd. And there was even some genuine interaction. These guys are on the web ( and are doing some more gigs in Ireland. Check them out. Led by Mike Scala, they delivered a funky, soulful set of original songs. Quite enjoyable.
Aslan made a triumphant entrance and delivered a passionate, albeit short set which mixed new and old material. The new material held up pretty strongly but the biggest reactions were reserved for the hits most of all Crazy World. Overall, it was a very pleasant evening and you got two great bands for €15. Ya couldn’t bate that with a stick.
Castle Venue News:
The next gig in The Castle is hometown girl done good, Wallis Bird. She is supported by Mr. Clive Barnes. I had the pleasure of seeing Wallis in the Arts Centre the last time she was over. And she made more noise than an army…. And that was acoustic. This time she has a full band!!! I’m giddy with excitement. Get your tickets early and let the Midget Funk Railroad run you over!!!!
Tickets are available at:
White’s For Music, Enniscorthy
The Castle Venue, Enniscorthy
Malloca’s Fine Foods, Enniscorthy


Written by thepanch

February 7, 2013 at 2:57 pm

Posted in Film Reviews, Uncategorized

Tagged with , , , , , , ,

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