Archive for indie

Dick Tracy and the Green Disaster

Posted in Mickey's Monkey, Music with tags , , on November 2, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

Dick Tracy

Here’s what the excellent Punk In Derry say of Dick Tracy and the Green Disaster:

Formed around the larger than life character that was Domhnall MacDermott, the original line up was Domhnall (vocals), Willie Doherty (vocals), Gerry McCauley (guitar), Seamus Cassidy (guitar), Tony Vail (bass) and John Coyle (drums). There followed a number of line up changes that included Domhnall’s brother Feargal, Colm McKeever, Tommy Olphert and Ciaran McLaughlin but the ethos of the band never changed. Drink, play and have fun doing it. The band did manage to get support slots with The Radiators From Space who were then emerging out of the Dublin scene and with, of all bands, Horslips, at the Culdaff Arms. By all accounts this was a legendary performance.

The band’s “back catalogue” comprises one studio tape of the infamous “Kevin Mahon” (think the Skids TV Stars), a tribute to the Derry City player. Rumour has it that the recording was so bad that the local radio station asked people to pledge money to charity before they would take it off air. A small fortune was donated. The final line up was Domhnall MacDermott, Gerry McCauley, Mickey Griffiths (often drunk, rarely sober) and Niall McKeever. They continued to perform sporadically in the late eighties and early nineties until the untimely death of Domhnall MacDermott in September 1994 at the age of thirty five.

According to Garbhan Downey, Mickey O’Donnell was also briefly a member before they threw him out when they discovered he knew all three chords.

From Punk in Derry The Undertones’ John O’Neill on Domhnall:

“The one day, during the summer of 1976 I remember someone telling me that there was a guy who had the first Velvet Underground LP and was more or less the same age as us. When we heard about someone else who had a record collection of stuff that we had no chance of ever hearing or ordering in Derry, it didn’t take us long to invite ourselves round to his house. As well as having the first two Velvets’ records he had records by The Stooges, The New York Dolls, The Doors and the Nuggets compilation!!! It was love at first sight!

Bravely, Domhnall (or as we knew him then, Wombat) allowed us to borrow his records over the next few weeks. Borrowing one or two at a time seemed a reasonable compromise, we wanted them all at once but we could see he was rightly a bit wary of us and in retrospect he definitely was taking a chance with these precious pieces of vinyl. Once taken home though, we plundered, pillaged, soaked up and outright nicked as much as we could. In fact the reason we chose the name The Undertones was because we thought it sounded like one of the garage bands off ‘Nuggets’. The rest, as they say, is history. The Ramones first LP was released later that year, there were reports of a growing Punk scene in England and everything sort of clicked into place as we started to write our own songs ‘borrowing’ heavily from The Ramones, The New York Dolls and The Stooges. Domhnall had got most of his records in the first place sent up to him from Dublin by a certain Phil Chevron, who went on to form the Radiators from Space (and was later a member of the Pogues) and who subsequently gave us our first shows in Dublin in 1977.

Domhnall himself went on to form ‘Dick Tracy and the Green Disaster’ and I remember bumping into him one day, telling him how much I really liked one of his songs called ‘Action Comics’ and how great a title it was. I always remember him saying to me that he had better get it copyrighted quick as I had stolen so much from him as it was, that he wasn’t going to take any more chances, which was about right!!! They say life is all about fate, well, it was a pleasure to have got to know Domhnall and it was certainly a life changing experience for me borrowing his records and basically getting his support at a time when sticking your neck out in Derry inevitably meant verbal and physical abuse. A true fan and lovely guy. With any luck he is up in heaven singing along with Johnny Thunders and Dee Dee and Joey Ramone. And, I never did steal that title!”

Kevin Mahon / Interview with Domhnall MacDermott (1986)

Kerbdog (1997 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , on October 11, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

From Kilkenny, Kerbdog were formed in 1991 by Cormac Battle (vocals/guitar), Colin Fennelly (bass) and Darragh Butler (drums) while still attending the local CBS school. Billy Dalton joined the band in early 1992 as a second guitarist but left in 1996. Kerbdog released their eponymous debut in 1994 and a second album ‘On the Turn’, in 1997. They recorded this Fanning session in 1997 (or was it late 1996?) and called it a day in 1998. Cormac and Darragh with Mick Murphy (bass) then formed Wilt who themselves released two albums and were active until 2003. Cormac Battle can be currently heard as DJ on 2FM in the 7pm – midnight slot on Sundays. Thank you to the Kerbdog forum for sharing this session.


Mexican Wave


Hard To Live

Therapy? (1990 Session)

Posted in Fanning, session with tags , , , on October 4, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

therapy 1991

Therapy? were formed in 1989 by Andy Cairns (guitar & vocals) and Fyfe Ewing (drums) in Larne, Co Antrim. Michael McKeegan (bass) was added to the band when gigs became a reality and the first single ‘Meat Abstract’ was self released in July 1990. They soon caught the attention of Dave Fanning and John Peel recording a session for RTE in July 1990 and for the BBC in August 1991 and November 1992. They released their first album ‘Pleasure Death’ on Wiija Records in July 1991. In 1993 Andy Cairns co-founded Blunt Records with Dan Oggly. Many thanks to the folk at The Music That Nobody Likes for these Fanning Session tracks.

Reality Fuck (1990)

Innocent X (1990)

Dancin’ With Manson (1990)

Body O.D. (1990)

The Brilliant Trees

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , on August 31, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

From Finglas in Dublin, The Brilliant Trees were formed in 1990 by Alan Hoey (vocals, guitar), Tony Barrett (guitar), Sid Barrett (bass) and Dave Farrell (drums). Named after a David Sylvian solo album, they recorded a Fanning Session in 1996 from whence this track is taken (apologies for the poor audio quality, if anyone managed to record this during the Dan Hegarty rebroadcast please drop a line). The first album ‘Friday Night‘ (1996) can be purchased digitally for the price of a pint from Indiecater Records.

If I Die (1996)

The Frank and Walters – Paul McLoone’s Green Room Session

Posted in live, Music, session with tags , , , , , on June 30, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

The Frank And Walters featured on tonight‘s Paul McLoone show on TodayFM recorded live in The Green Room. They can be seen in Crosshaven on 14th July, Ballinhassig on 16th July and Skibbereen at Cork X Southwest on 31st July, full details here.

The Parson (2010)

Colours (2010)

Tony Cochrane (2010)

The Sultans of Ping F.C.

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on June 28, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

The Sultans of Ping F.C. formed in Cork in early 1988 featuring Niall O’Flaherty (vocals), Pat O’Connell (guitar), Paul Fennelly (bass) and Ger Lyons (drums). In April 1990 the band recorded their first demo ‘Confessions of a Sellafield Sex Guru‘ featuring three songs ‘Stupid Kid’, ‘Riot at the Sheepdog Trials’ and ‘Eamon Andrews’. They played their first Dublin show that year supporting The Golden Horde. In October 1990 the Eurorock festival was held in Cork and the Sultans were chosen as the local entry. In December the band recorded a session for the Dave Fanning show. Many thanks to the Shimmy Shammy Sultans website for the tracks.

No More Plastic Pitches (1990)

The Old Days (1990)

Where’s Me Jumper (1990)

The Cranberries (1991 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , on May 23, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

A big shout out to Dan Hegarty for single handedly keeping the flame of The Fanning Sessions alive. He has already featured the ‘classic’ Frank & Walters session and last week dug out this treat from The Cranberries or The Cranberry Saw Us as they were still at that time known – their first Fanning session recorded 9th March 1991. Once again if anyone out there still has cassette recordings from the 80s Fanning shows in their attic please get in touch as the old archive deperately needs some fresh meat..




Put Me Down

The Panic Merchants (Demo)

Posted in demo, Music with tags , , , , on May 19, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

FS PanicMerchantsPosterGrattan

From Cavan and Donegal but based in Dublin, The Panic Merchants went through two distinct phases; 1986-1987 from whence today’s tracks date and 1989-1991 when they had a second bite at the proverbial cherry. Originally The Panic Merchants were Justin Kelly (vocals), David Meagher (guitar), Paddy Glackin (bass) and Noel Larkin (drums). Aidan McNamara (bass) replaced Paddy Glackin in 1989 and Stephen Farrell (keyboards) joined in 1990. During their first outing the band had a track ‘Retro’ featured on the ‘Comet 2‘ compilation. The second lineup released the ‘Firewalking’ EP and recorded a further single ‘Swerve’ which was never released. They did get a call from Jim Lockhart, producer on the Fanning show about recording a session but unfortunately it never came to to pass. These tracks are from a demo the band recorded in 1986/1987.

FS PanicMerchantsRockGarden 1991


Happy Home


Dot Dot Dot

Posted in Fanning, Music, Uncategorized with tags , on May 10, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

Or should that be . . .? From a cassette called ‘Why Go Bald’ a band who Dave says ‘always send in such interesting tapes’. If you know more about this band I would love to hear from you.

Obsession (1989)

The Slowest Clock – Hot Press Sep 1987

Posted in Fanning with tags , , on April 11, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


The link is tenuous but The Celibate Rifles do get a name check in the article below so that’s my excuse for including it. For a long time i didn’t know who the track was by but thanks to the wonder of the internet I finally figured it out. It’s a fantastic track and one I never grow tired of.

The Celibate Rifles – Pretty Colours (1984)

Paul O’Mahony comes face to face with The Slowest Clock

The Slowest Clock came together through the Musicians’ Contact section of Hot Press. “It’s true,” bassist Brian Neavyn insists. “Gerry put an ad in Hot Press looking for a bass player and I ended up joining his band that lasted a few weeks , but in that time, Gerry and I had hit it off and so we began writing songs together. We were working for about six months on our own before deciding to get another band together. Frank placed an ad in HP looking for a drummer! It all linked up quite nicely. Does this sound like one of those promo ads?! (laughs).”


In February ’86, the four musicians who were to become The Slowest Clock sat around the table in a local pub and decided that they were going to spend six months refining their music and adding to the songs that Brian and Gerry had already written. That they did, finally emerging to fill support slots to outfits like A House, Guernica, The Stars Of Heaven, Something Happens!, The Gorehounds, and occasional visitors to theses shores, The Celibate Rifles. There was one hectic night when the band opened for Microdisney in the Top Hat then dashed back to The Underground to headline there.
Brian: “We had to support Microdisney in Dun Laoghaire until 9.20pm and we had to get back into town to play from 10.00 to 11.00. The support act From The Needle were very helpful because they kept the crowd in The Underground going and let us use their equipment.” Gerry: “We walked in the door at 10.00, got a pint, had no soundcheck, plugged in our guitars, and that was it. Best gig we’ve ever done!”
The Slowest Clock’s reputation spread like wildfire. “We were extremely lucky,” Brian elaborates, “because the first demo was played a lot on RTE and then there was a Dave Fanning Session in November. Out of that came the B-side of the ‘Wash Day’ single, then the ‘Comet One’ ep, and the various support slots. Bands like The Stars, Something Happens! and The Gorehounds were great – they gave us gigs and also told other people about us.”
“The other side to that,” Gerry adds, “is that we also only supported bands we liked. I mean, it was £3.00 to get into The Baggot and I certainly couldn’t afford it – so it was easier to play than to find the money to get in to see a band I wanted to see!”


While some musicians fell that it’s better to avoid current musical happenings for fear of absorbing them into their creative subconscious, Brian asserts that The Slowest Clock are still “active listeners. I can understand that sort of hibernation,” he adds. “We just do it out of interest and I would say that the amount of ‘influence’ by other band on our songwriting in the last three or four years is very, very little.”
Gerry: “First and foremost, we’re all fans. If you’ve been listening to music from say fourteen years old, then just because you pick up a guitar and join a band doesn’t mean you stop listening. You become more interested – not so much in the actual music but the process of it. Once you get the initial buzz off the music, then I would then listen to how it’s made, what instruments are going in, where, and the techniques used.”


What is intriguing about The Slowest Clock and bands of a roughly similar ideology on the Dublin scene like Something Happens! and The Stars Of Heaven is that, although they would have grown up on Seventies Glam and Punk their strongest influences go back to the previous decade.
“Punk brought me back to the Sixties,” Brian says, “Some of the Seventies punk bands would be influenced by The Stooges and The MC5. Then you’d get another band mentioning The Count 5’s, The Barbarians… and it just goes from there.”
While The Slowest Clock have seen both their first Richie Taylor-produced demo of “Little Boy Lost” and their Dave Fanning session end up on vinyl, they’re still awaiting their debut proper. A couple of tracks recently recorded in Temple Lane could form the basis of a new EP – though the practical details have yet to be confirmed.
When it does happen, the finished product will represent one of the most eagerly-anticipated Irish rock artefacts in years. The Slowest Clock have the potential to justify that kind of intense interest. Their time will come!

Hot Press VOL 11 NO 18 24th September 1987

The Frank and Walters (1991 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on March 31, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


The Frank and Walters were formed in 1990 by Paul Linehan (vocals/bass), his brother Niall Linehan (guitar) (replaced by Kevin Pedreschi in 2004) and Ashley Keating (drums). The band’s name honoured two eccentric Cork characters of the day. This session was recorded for the Dave Fanning show in March 1991. The Frank and Walters signed to Setanta Records in 1991 and released two EPs the aptly titled ‘EP1’ followed by ‘EP2’. Ashley Keating presents ‘Green on Red‘ a weekly show on Sunday from 7-10pm on Cork’s RedFM dedicated to “the best of irish music” . Thank you to the folks over at the F&W Forum who had the three missing session tracks.

Walters Trip (1991)

Michael (1991)

Laurence Olivier (1991)

Never Ending Staircase (1991)

The Cranberries – Them (1991)

Posted in Music, Peel with tags , , , on March 27, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


From Limerick, The Cranberry Saw Us were formed in August 1989 by brothers Noel Hogan (guitar) and Mike Hogan (bass) with Fergal Lawler (drums) and Niall Quinn (vocals, guitar). Niall Quinn was already drummer with The Hitchers and two months after The Cranberry Saw Us recorded their first demo in Jan 1990 he left to concentrate on that band. Niall remained on good terms with the band and was soon to hook the remaining members up with a young singer Dolores O’Riordan. The new lineup released 3 cassette EPs in 1990. At the end of 1990 they shortened their name to first The Cranberry’s and finally The Cranberries. Under this name they made their first vinyl / CD release ‘Uncertain‘ on Xeric Records in Oct 1991. Today’s song is the fourth and final song on that EP.

Them (1991)

Tom McLaughlin

Posted in Fanning, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , on March 23, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


Thomas McLaughlin originally from Belfast but later US educated explaining an exotic accent once of Light A Big Fire fame, pursued solo career but finally saw success as a playright of note.

She Says

All You Ever Wanted

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music, session, Uncategorized with tags on March 16, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

I need some help with today’s track.. It was taped off The Fanning Show in December 1990 but I have no further information..

All You Ever Wanted (1990)

Power Of Dreams (Live on Dan Hegarty Show)

Posted in Fanning, interview, live, Music, session with tags , , , on March 3, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

Power Of Dreams were in 2FM Studio 8 last night where they performed some songs live on the Dan Hegarty show. They also appeared on the Dave Fanning show but I didn’t find out till afterwards, should have checked here or even here. They are midway through their 25th anniversary tour so you can still catch them in Dundalk, Cork or Dublin.

Does It Matter


There Is A Light That Never Goes Out


Never Been To Texas

The Partisans

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , on February 25, 2010 by Fanning Sessions
Photo via Jack Lyons (Irish Jack)

Photo via Jack Lyons (Irish Jack)

The Partisans were a post Blades Paul Cleary vehicle which featured Conor Brady (guitar), Damien McGoona (bass, ex No Name Band) and Tony Smyth (brother of The Bogey Boys’ Jimmy Smyth, also ex No Name Band) (drums). They released a 7 track mini LP on Hotwire Records in 1987 from which they released one single ‘I’m Doing Fine’. The Partisans released one further single ‘Open Your Eyes’ on Hotwire in 1988 followed by a single ‘Different Dance’ in 1989 on Trap Records. Paul Cleary’s next release was a solo album ‘Crooked Town’ on Reekus in 2001. Conor Brady went on to feature on The Commitments soundtrack and toured with The Corrs. Most recently he has played with Jerry Fish And The Mudbug Club but is now concentrating on production at his Phonic Studios where he worked in March 2009 with Stars Of Heaven and Revenants man Stephen Ryan.

Country Boy

The Little Fish (Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, radio, Uncategorized with tags , , on February 24, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

little fish

I had originally credited this track to 33rd Hurricane but Finbarr Doherty of that band says while he would have been proud to have written this song that it was not them. Hopefully some eagle eyed/eared reader will be able to set this record straight in the not too distant future.

Happy to finally announce a successful resolution. Thanks to a kind benefactor who lent us his entire collection of precious Fanning tapes (thank you Thomas!) we came across another recording of this track which identifies the band as Little Fish. Little Fish were Jimmy Fitzgerald (vocals & guitar), Brendan Duffy (guitar), Turlough Moore (bass) and Kieran Joyce (drums). The Galway band recorded a Fanning session in November 1989 so our new mission is to track that down (and maybe a band photo to boot).

That Bus

Something Happens! (First Demo)

Posted in demo, Music with tags , on February 20, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

Ha that got your attention! Today I’m going to send you to another blog Dublin Opinion where they’ve been doing sterling work posting some very rare demos and yes came across the very first Something Happens! demo and have been kind enough to post it complete with scan of the inlay. So off you go and enjoy a piece of history. There are also demos from The Secret Goldfish, The Boneshakers, Modus Vivendi and The Outpatients.

Guernica (1988)

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , on February 15, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


In his recent all irish music show ‘An Teach Solas‘ Dave Couse reminisced about the first A House irish tour which they did as a double header with Guernica. I actually saw the Limerick leg of that tour in the Savoy but my memory is so bad I’d actually misattributed the second act leading to a hasteful correction last week. I also discovered that I hadn’t yet posted this track. Lead singer Joe Rooney has since achieved success as a comedian and featured in Father Ted as Father Damo. Guernica are Joe Rooney (vocals), Derek Turner (guitar), Ray McCarthy (keyboards), Derek Lee (bass) and Dara Broe (drums). This track was a single in 1988. Updating with band pic courtesy Cloudberry Cake Proselytism V.3.

Humming Of The Engine (1988)

Azure Days (Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , on February 3, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


Carlow band Azure Days recorded 4 sessions for the Dave Fanning show but so far I have only managed to track down this one track. I believe it comes from the third or fourth of those sessions. Azure Days were Gala Hutton (vocals & guitar), Liam O’Brien (guitar), Ray Lowry (bass) and Gerry Farrell (drums) . Thanks to demosuzki for helping confirm the track origin.

She Won’t Come Again (Session)

Blue In Heaven

Posted in Music with tags , , on February 2, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

Dave Couse (yes, him) is planning an Irish Indie night ‘An Teach Solas’ next Sunday from 10pm – midnight on TodayFM (no website but he did suggest emailing him MP3s). The reason I mention this is because he was apparently having trouble tracking down music by todays featured artist.

Hot Press cover photo taken by Shane McCarthy

Hot Press cover photo, Shane McCarthy

Blue In Heaven hailed from Churchtown in Dublin and featured Shane O’Neill (guitar/vocals), Eamonn Tynan (guitar), Declan Jones (bass) and Dave Clarke (drums). They released their first single ‘The Lights Go Out’ in 1983 which apparently Bono placed in a personal top 10 in a 1983 Rolling Stone article. Their first album ‘All The Gods’ Men’ was produced in 1985 by Joy Division producer Martin Hannett and featured singles ‘Julie Cries’ and ‘Across My Heart’. But it was with the release of second album ‘Explicit Material’ and especially the single ‘I Just Wanna‘ that they converted me.

I saw them a number of times live and on RTE and they appeared in the 1986 Self Aid benefit. Shane O’Neill was obviously a fan of Iggy Pop as the controversial Hot Press cover above would prove . There are some interesting articles over at The Record Robot and Dublin Opinion. This track was the b-side to ‘I Just Wanna’.

Beating In My Head (Little Flower) (1986)

Backwards Into Paradise (Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning with tags , on January 28, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

Backwards Into Paradise have already featured as have Into Paradise. Today’s track is a demo from Backwards Into Paradise which again is a testament to the quality of that band.

Piece Of Paradise (Demo)

The Trainwalkers

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , on January 11, 2010 by Fanning Sessions

The TrainwalkersThanks to Conor over at Dublin Opinion for these tracks which featured on the 1989 Danceline Records compilation Nationwide. Incidentally Eddie Joyce or Steddie Eddie of Danceline fame is still active so check him out on MySpace or on Twitter.

The Trainwalkers from Tallaght, were formed in 1988 by John Prendergast (guitar), Mark Willis (bass), Paul Bolger (vocals) and John Ritchie (drums). Paul Bolger left in 1989 with Mark Willis assuming vocal duties and Fintan Doyle drafted in as second guitarist. The band recorded one Fanning session in 1989 and were runners-up in the Carling/Hot Press finals in 1989. The Trainwalkers now have a MySpace page with audio and video and expanded bio..

Girl I Used To Know (1989)

Kit Kat (1989)

Shimpu Zig Zag (Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , on January 4, 2010 by Fanning Sessions


Happy new year. Here’s a demo track from Cork band Shimpu Zig Zag. Photo courtesy

The Scream (1987)

Into Paradise

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , on December 22, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

In 1989 with a newly abbreviated name Into Paradise released the ‘Blue Light‘ EP on recently formed independent Irish label Setanta. Formerly known as Backwards Into Paradise, the band comprised Dave Long (vocals, guitar), Rachel Tighe (bass), James Eadie (guitar, keyboards) and Ronan Clarke (drums). The ‘Blue Light’ EP was selected as single of the week in NME in June 1989 and Dave Fanning played today’s track ‘I Want You’ regularly on his evening show throughout that summer.

I Want You (1989)

Power Of Dreams (1989)

Posted in Music with tags , , on December 16, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

power of dreams

From Clondalkin, Power Of Dreams are Craig Walker (guitar & vocals), brother Keith Walker (drums) and Michael Lennox (bass). They recorded a Fanning session in April 1989 and in July 1989 they recorded an EP for Setanta Records produced by Sean O’Neill (ex Undertones and That Petrol Emotion). Here’s what Craig Walker said in an April interview:

“Our first demo was produced by a guy called Stano who was around at the same time as the Virgin Prunes and ended up working with Colm from My Bloody Valentine. He sent it over to Keith Cullen because he knew he’d just started Setanta Records by putting out an Into Paradise single, another Dublin band. He came to a show, said he wanted to put a record out and invited us over to London.”

“We didn’t really think much of it but we went over and he put us in a studio in Elephant & Castle. We’d never really been to London before and ended up staying in Keith’s squat. The whole experience was fantastic. We recorded the single, went away and didn’t expect anything more. Then I got a call from Keith that we were single of the week in Music Week and Melody Maker. It all went crazy then.”

Following a bidding war they signed to Polydor. Cypress, Mine! guitarist Ian Olney (most recently seen with the reformed Sultans Of Ping F.C.) joined in June 1990, just before the release of debut LP ‘Immigrants, Emigrants And Me’. 2010 marks the 20th anniversary of the release of that album and to mark the occasion, the band have reformed for a series of live shows in Spirit Store, Dundalk (March 10); Whelan’s, Dublin (March 12); and The Pavilion, Cork (March 13). A 2CD limited edition of the album, containing all 14 original tracks plus the debut EP ‘A Little Piece of God’ and various b-sides, will be released on 1st March 2010.

Craig Walker has just released his debut solo album ‘Siamese’ and he recently recorded a session for Dan Hegarty on 2fm.

Here is the title track of that original Setanta Records EP:

A Little Piece Of God (1989)

The Slowest Clock (Fear In Me)

Posted in Music with tags , on December 14, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Did I mention that I liked The Slowest Clock? I’m about to break the major premise of this blog on their behalf because this wasn’t actually recorded off the Fanning show. It was recorded from the radio but that’s all I know, I don’t have a clue who the DJ is or even what station it was but it features some band members attempting to introduce ‘Fear In Me’. I suspect this coincided with the release of their ‘2-car garage’ EP in September 1989 on Bewildered Records.

Fear In Me (1989)

The Summerhouse

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags on December 8, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Does a 30 second clip justify a post? You’ll have to be the judge but unfortunately the tape ran out at the wrong moment. As Dave says in his introduction, he played this demo track from The Summerhouse on the eve of their afternoon gig in The Underground on Dame St. According to the IPNWD The Summerhouse released one single on Summerhouse Recordings in 1986 ‘Until The Light Comes’ / ‘Colour’ and had a track ‘Everything I Ever Wanted’ on the Comet EP One compilation the same year. Update: According to Aonghus McAnally on this ‘Borderline‘ appearance performing ‘Colour‘ the band were Kieran McAvoy (guitar), Stephen Dempsey (keyboards), Tom Rooney (drums), Jean Marc Sulle (bass) and Alan Redmond (vocals). Update #2: Adding full track.

The Prize with intro (1987)

The Prize (1987)

Tuesday Blue (Eurorock)

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , on December 4, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Reading Jim Carroll’s ‘On The Record‘ reminded me of the 1986 Tuesday Blue broadcast from the Eurorock festival in Liverpool. That may have been the first appearance by an irish act at Eurorock but many others followed including Thee Amazing Colossal Men (Novi Sad 1989), Sultans of Ping F.C., A House, Power of Dreams, Dancing Bastards from Hell (Cork 1990), D.M. Sole (Köln 1991), Therapy? (Aalborg 1992), The Frank & Walters (Helsinki 1993). Incidentally Ray Fean of Tuesday Blue is currently helping out brother Johnny in the Horslips where he is filling in for Eamon Carr on drums.

I Want You To Stay (1986)

Tuesday Blue setlist: I Want You To Stay / Superstition / Tunnel Vision / Dear Life / I Believe In You

An Emotional Fish

Posted in Music with tags , , , on November 18, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


An Emotional Fish were formed in February 1988 by Ger Whelan (vocals), Martin Murphy (drums), David Frew (guitar), and Enda Wyatt (bass) but it would be a year before they played their first gig. They released two singles on Mother Records before signing deals with majors East West and Atlantic where they released their debut album. This track is from the first single ‘Grey Matter’ / ‘Cry Like A Baby’ released in June 1989. Their follow-up single ‘Celebrate’ (1990) would go top 10 in Ireland and there would be no stopping them. I saw them on a ill-fated trip to the big smoke and it was an impressive performance indeed.

Cry Like A Baby (1989)

Stitched-Back Foot Airman

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , on November 11, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


So far on this blog I’ve stuck to Irish acts but I came across this on my trawls through the Fanning cassettes and figured it was sufficiently good and suitably obscure that it warranted inclusion. It’s a track that was Dave’s favourite single of 1988 (along with U2’s ‘Desire’) and to my ears is a slice of pop brilliance which still sounds perfectly fresh. I have to wager that their unusual name (inspired by a newspaper headline relating to a small plane pilot who’d crashed and had to have is his foot re-attached) didn’t help their career trajectory but thanks to the wonders of the internet I’ve been able to dig out a few details.

Stitched-Back Foot Airman started life in Southampton in the early eighties as a side project of Simon Vincent with his younger brother Robin Vincent, Mike Farmer and film maker/visual artist Crimp Beringer. Around 1984 the band decamped to London releasing several records on their own ‘Very Mouth’ label including a single ‘Wouldn’t You Like to Know’, a 12” single ‘Costa Del Sol’ and a mini album ‘Seven Egg Timing Greats’. I suspect Simon has uploaded some early videos here.

Costa Del Sol (1988)

Tie The Boy (1986 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on October 30, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

tie the boy

Dave says they are from Belfast but Myspace says Tie The Boy hailed from Derry. We’ve already featured what turned out to be their second session but this is their first visit to studio 8. Recorded on December 1st 1986 the session featured 4 tracks, ‘Blame It On Me’, ‘My Pleasure’, ‘More Than Love’ and ‘Kerry Babies’.

More Than Love (1986)

Blame It On Me (1986)

Kerry Babies (1986)

My Pleasure (1986)

The Conspiracy (1988)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , , on October 8, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

The Conspiracy were Greg Pearle (vocals), Eamon Mitchell (guitar), Keith Geraghty (bass) and Michael Dunphy (drums). Two of their tracks featured on the 1988 Danceline Records compilation ‘Swimming Out Of The Pool‘. This is one of those songs from that record. The band photo from the album sleeveis courtesy the Irish Rock Discography


Badlands (1988)


Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags on September 23, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Featuring the songwriting talents of Dave O’Loughlin (bass) with Niall Farrell (vocals), Brian Downey (guitar) and Shane Bates (drums) O.T.T. released one single ‘Misty Gold’ in 1988 on Danceline Records. The B side ‘It’s Only Love’ appeared on the Owl Records compilation ‘Snap Shots‘ in 1987 and ‘Nationwide‘ (Danceline records) in 1989. Not to be confused with the 90s boyband from Dublin!. Thanks once again to The Irish Punk And New Wave Discography for the details.

Misty Gold (Demo)

A House (Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , on September 16, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

I’ve already featured a session by A House so I’ll keep this one short. This is a demo track from them. Oh and please check out this blog featuring early single ‘Heart Happy’ which sounds fantastic (why wasn’t it on the Best Of CD).

Call Me Blue (Demo)

The Lower Pool

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , on September 7, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

As featured on the 20 track compilation ‘The Weird Weird World of Guru Weirdbrain‘ released in 1985 by Guru Weirdbrain aka Eamon Carr of Horslips fame on his Hotwire Records label today’s tune is ‘Minus a Nickel’ by The Lower Pool. Apparently still active The Lower Pool is from what I can tell based around Frank Maher who is abetted by Adrian Matthews on guitar and the band are card carrying members of IMRO despite what the IPNWD writes. Adrian also has his own site which can be checked out here.

Minus a Nickel (1985)

The Fireworks Factory

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , on September 2, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

From Dublin featuring Gerry Feehily (vocals), David Drum (guitars), Hugo Fitzgerald (bass), Alan Hynes (guitar) and Karl Young (drums/percussion), here is a demo recorded in December 1986 by The Fireworks Factory. Check out the official website, apparently there will be a 25 year reunion show in Dublin in December 2014.

Wanting The Crown (Demo)

Azure Days

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , on August 24, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


From Carlow Azure Days were Carling / Hot Press Band of the Year finalists in 1986 and winners in 1987. The first track today ‘The Old Tradition’ featured on Comet LP Two while the second track ‘Blew My Clouds Away’ was released as a single on Mystery Records in November 1987. I have a third track I think is Azure Days but am not 100% sure (see here). According to the Irish Punk And New Wave Discography the band comprised Gala Hutton (vocals & guitar), Ray Lowry (bass) and Gerry Farrell (drums, later of Skindive) but both photographs show 4 members.. Updating: Thanks to Neil and Krusty the fourth member is Liam O’Brien. The single was produced by Tír na nÓg’s Leo O’Kelly who recorded his own version of said track in 2002. Gala Hutton later featured in bands 79Cortinaz and The Trains and is currently busy with Sugar Factory. Update: According to Wikipedia Robbie Robinson featured on ‘Blew My Clouds Away’ and also on this.

The Old Tradition (1987)

Blew My Clouds Away (1987)

Cast Of Thousands

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , on August 21, 2009 by Fanning Sessions
Cast Of Thousands in the Railway Tavern, Fahan, Co. Donegal (20th October 1985) with Caron Keating RIP, Jackie  Hamilton, Ronan Hayden, Dave Harvey, Mark Megannety and Jim Walker

Cast Of Thousands in the Railway Tavern, Fahan, Co. Donegal (20th October 1985) with Caron Keating RIP, Jackie
Hamilton, Ronan Hayden, Dave Harvey, Mark Megannety and Jim Walker (C) Jim Cunningham

Over the years I’ve been to many a gig. Some of the bigger names that should have left a greater impression I remember nothing of and only have the ticket stub to remind me I was there. Others by bands that have since disappeared into oblivion have left indelible impressions on my mind and can still be recalled clearly 24 years later. One such act was Derry band Cast Of Thousands. From the moment they took the stage gradually, each member picking up his instrument and joining in until finally singer Dave Harvey bounds on stage apparently just in time to launch into the vocals of the first song I knew this band meant business. At one point Harvey in his exertions managed to fall flat on his back but he continued singing as if it was all part of the act. Myself and a friend blagged our way backstage afterwards for a chat and ended up getting dropped off by the band as they continued into the night towards Dublin and the ferry back to London.

Cast Of Thousands (or is it Cast Of 1,000’s?) were formed in Derry in 1986 by Jim Walker (guitar) with Dave Harvey (vocals) and Greg Terry Short (drums). Jim Walker was previously in punk act The Sect (watch ‘Crisis after Crisis’ from 1981) while Harvey was a member of Donegal jazz-funk act Quarterdeck. Here is a discography which does some excellent detective work but also relies heavily on the IPNWD entry which I believe in this instance is not definitive. Watch videos for ‘Harp Street‘ and ‘Nothing Is Forever‘ or performing on BBC NI ‘Channel One‘ or interviewed on French TV. Walker is currently treading the boards with covers band The Jaywalkers, most recently playing a Gweedore Bar reunion in the Tower Hotel, Derry.

The following track is the B side to the second single ‘Nothing Is Forever’.

New Tomorrow (1987)

The Subterraneans – Slum (demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , on August 20, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Some time ago I promised to post this excellent demo track from Artane band The Subterraneans. Again I don’t know why these guys didn’t go further as they really were very talented. If anyone still has any other tracks I’d love to hear them..

Slum (demo)

The Baby Snakes

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , on July 30, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

baby snakes 1986
Okay last post before I take a little break. Two ex members of Those Handsome Devils, Frank Rynne (vocals & guitar) and John Bonnie (drums) formed The Baby Snakes in 1985 with (a) Niall O’Sullivan or (b) Colin Byrne (guitar) and Daragh McCarthy (bass) in 1985. The very same year they recorded a Fanning session and one track from that session made it to No.13 in Fanning Fab 50. It also appeared on a compilation Weird Weird World of Guru Weirdbrain on Hotwire Records the same year?? You can watch the boys in action on irish Saturday morning TV here, did anyone else watch Anything Goes just to see the bands, that Mary Fitzgerald used do my head in..

Johnny (1985)

Engine Alley (1991 Flowerbox EP)

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , on July 24, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

engine alley

On Tuesday August 20th 1991 on the eve of the release of their debut EP Flowerbox on Mother Records Dave played three tracks on his show. Formed in Kilkenny by Canice Kenealy (vocals), Brian Kenealy (guitar) and Eamonn Byrne (bass) in 1989, Engine Alley soon moved to Dublin and were joined by Emmaline Duffy-Fallon (drums) and Ken Rice (violin). I think you’ll agree this is a pretty impressive debut. Watch them perform or an interview on The Den. And how is this for synchronicity..

Your Head (1991)

In A Different Kind Of Way (1991)

The Flowers (1991)

The Mountain Climbers – Grace

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , on July 14, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Today’s band, The Mountain Climbers from Dublin, released one single in 1988 on Solid Records (or was it 1987) and then disappeared off the side of the planet. At least that’s what seems to have happened. I look forward to being corrected. Anyway it’s a great little single which I hope you enjoy..

Grace (1988)

The Sugar Rays (1988)

Posted in Fanning, session with tags , , on July 13, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

sugar rays - borderline 1988

Today it’s back to business. This is the third track of a session this Navan band recorded for the Dave Fanning show in April 1988.

The Sugar Rays were Senan Burke (vocals), Dianne Steen (keyboards), Anthony Cregan (bass), Brendan Connolly (guitar), Enda Cahill (drums). Anthony Cregan is currently active with Little Palace who released a second album ‘Invitation Time‘ in late 2009.

Elvis Presley On CD (1988)

And here’s what the RTE contract looked like:

Thee Amazing Colossal Men (Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music, radio with tags , , on July 11, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Formed in 1985 and featuring Joey Barry, Sid Rainey and Garret Lee now of Jacknife Lee fame Thee Amazing Colossal Men were active until 1990 when they released the album ‘Totale’ on Siren Records. In 1989 they represented Ireland at the Eurorock Festival held in Novi Sad, in then Yugoslavia and also feaured on RTE show ‘7 Bands On The Up’. This track is from a demo they recorded in Sun Studio, Temple Bar in 1987. In 1990 the band reformed as Compulsion in which guise they made a number of releases.

Loganberry Woman (Demo)

JFK (1988)

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , , on July 9, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Today’s track is from Dublin band JFK, one of two songs they had on a 1988 Danceline Records compilation ‘Swimming Out Of The Pool‘. JFK or Just For Kicks were Donal Burton (vocals), Bill Campbell (guitar), Chris Mullen (bass) and Peter Cush (drums).


The Room Is Empty (1988)

Aiken Drum (1985)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music, session with tags , , on July 7, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

street carnival rock
Aiken Drum were a Finglas three piece featuring Martin McCann on vocals (later of Lord John White and Sack fame) and brothers David Morrissey (later A House) and Pat Morrissey. This track was recorded in a session for Dave Fanning on 27th November 1985. Thanks to Mark for pointing out that it is ‘The Hearing’ subsequently released on the RTE Radio 2 / HotPress Street Carnival Rock EP.

The Hearing (1956)

Complete Fanning Session (courtesy Dave Morrissey, see comments)

Cactus World News

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , on July 6, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Formed in 1984 Cactus World News recorded a Fanning session in May 1985. Three months later they released their first single “The Bridge” on Mother Records produced by none other than Bono. The band received much media attention in the UK press and were thought to be the next big thing to come from these shores. This of course resulted in less favourable reviews closer to home. Despite an appearance on the soundtrack for mould breaking TV series Miami Vice (for heavy use of popular music) and kind words from Lou Reed the band disintegrated in 1989 when their second album was shelved. The second album was finally released in 2005 along with an expanded edition of the first album ‘Urban Beaches’ which included the Fanning Session track I have chosen today although this is the original version from my trusty cassette archive.

State Of Emergency (1985)

The Pleasure Cell – New Age (1986)

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , , on July 3, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

pleasure cell - new age

From Dublin featuring Noel Green (guitar & vocals), Dermot Reid (bass) and Will Walsh (drums), The Pleasure Cell released just one single ‘New Age’. Dave Fanning played this in his review of Irish music released in 1986. A video for “She’s Just A Girl” on the RTE show Visual Eyes in 1987 (you’ll never guess who the host was) can be seen here. They also recorded a Fanning session so if anyone has a copy please drop a line.

Here’s what Niall McGuirk writes in his 2004 book “Document – A Story Of Hope” which tells of vegan recipes and punk / hardcore in Dublin between 1987 – 1999.

The Pleasure Cell’s omission from any charting of Irish music is a crying shame. “A Statement Is A Weapon in an Empty Hand” was a line from from their New Age 7” released independently in 1987 on their own Common Ground Records.

New Age (1986)

The Stars Of Heaven

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on July 2, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


I suppose it is fitting that I never actually got to see The Stars Of Heaven live despite being a huge fan. Myself and a friend read in HotPress over Christmas that they were playing Dublin and we decided to hitch to Dublin (a 4 hour drive) to attend the gig as we lived in rural Ireland and nothing was happening. Things started very slowly and next thing we knew the sandwiches were gone and we still hadn’t got our first lift, we were faced with an embarrassing about face. We eventually got that first lift and then hit it lucky and we eventually made it to the venue on time only to find that the gig had been cancelled (or was it just HP that was wrong?). We ended up going to see An Emotional Fish and staying the night in Isaac’s Hostel. A good night was had by all despite the disappointment. As it turns out The Stars Of Heaven had called it a day. Watch the band perform here and if you like what you hear, do yourself a favour and get a copy of the 2006 reissues on Independent Records of Sacred Heart Hotel/Holyhead EP and/or Speak Slowly (HP review). Update: those two albums are now available as a free download over on the Independent Records site. The posthumous ‘Unfinished Dreaming‘ is also well worth checking out.

The first track was a single on Hotwire Records from May 1985. John Peel liked it so much he had the lads over for sessions no less than 4 occasions. Then we have a track from the April 1988 Fanning Session and finally a track from the December 1984 Fanning Session which unusually features Stan Erraught on lead vocals.

Clothes Of Pride (1985)

Smalltown Reel (1988) watch here

Eldorado (1984)

Bam Bam And The Calling

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , , , on June 25, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

bam bam & the calling in the venue derry

Bam Bam And The Calling formed in Derry in 1983 and in the early days had a somewhat changeable lineup with Paul PJ McCartney being the one constant. Raymond Gorman was an early member before leaving for London with Sean O’Neill to form That Petrol Emotion. The band lineup settled around McCartney (guitar, vocals), Tom Doherty (drums), John McCloskey (guitar) and Joe Brown (bass). They moved to London where they released two singles; ‘Scraping Off The Shine‘ in 1987 and ‘Neck Tattoo’ in 1988 before calling it a day. Bam Bam & The Calling recorded a Fanning session on 19th January 1987 featuring tracks ‘Road Of The Lonely’, ‘Only Sing’,  ‘Scraping Off The Shine’ and ‘ Secret Meeting’. Paul McCartney featured on an EP by Sean O’Neill’s post That Petrol Emotion project Rare in 1990 and in 1992 released an album “Entrance” on Setanta Records with The Deadly Engines. These tracks are from a demo of unknown provenance, if you have details or even better a recording of the Fanning session it goes without saying, we’d love to hear from you.

Talking Aloud

Scraping Off The Shine

Neck Tattoo

Hey Paulette

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , , , on June 22, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Hey Paulette were formed in Dublin in 1987 by Eamonn Davis (guitar & vocals), Derrick Dalton (guitar) and Colm Fitzpatrick (bass). Recorded in 1988, the first single “Commonplace” was recorded with a drum machine and so impressed John Peel that he invited them to record a session which they duly did in 1989. Peel thought the session was “peachy”. Darren Nolan joined on drums “for a while” but then stayed till the bitter end. They were soon begged to do a Fanning Session. Stan Erraught of The Stars Of Heaven produced their ep “I Really Do Love Penelope” and enjoyed it so much that he joined the band. They split in 1991, Derrick Dalton went on to play bass with The Mexican Pets, Eamonn Davis, Colm Fitzpatrick formed The Sewing Room with Stan. Sadly Derrick passed away recently, nice tribute here, was in a band called crumb with Eamonn and they have a great bio of how it was back in the day. Must try and track down the 2006 release Long Ball Into Nowhere on Firestation Records. Watch them in action here and just came across this interesting piece on the Firestation blog.


Updated July 23 2009

Cypress, Mine!

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , on June 17, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Regular readers might have gathered that the title of this blog is more aspirational than manifesto and I have been padding out the posts between sessions with demos and the occasional single or album track. All posts have one common theme; they were played on The Dave Fanning Show in the late eighties. These tracks are culled from the dying cassette collection of a fortysomething who can’t believe how good this music still sounds. Ideally I would hope to inspire others to dig out sessions they might have recorded or to colour in some detail to the sometimes minimal information which is available on these bands. Maybe younger readers might finally be in a position to check out some band they’ve heard of but never managed to track down.

Anyway on with the music. Listening to these old cassettes I often find this song or that going round in my head for days. I’ll sing snippets and annoy the kids until they beg me to stop. Maybe someday they’ll stumble across this blog and it’ll all become clear.. ‘Sugarbeet God’ is just such a track and because I have it to hand I’m going to accompany it with a track from their 1988 album ‘Exit Trashtown’. The band is of course Cork favourites Cypress, Mine!

Cypress Mine! were Ciaran O’Tuama (vocals), Ian Olney (guitar), Denis O’Mullane (bass) and Mark Healy (drums). They released three singles; ‘In The Big House’ (1987), ‘Justine’ (1987) and ‘Sugarbeet God’ (1988) and one album ‘Exit Trashtown’ (1988) all on on Solid Records. Ian Olney went on to become a member of Power Of Dreams in 1990.

The Sugar Beet God (1988)

Justine (1987)

Shimpu Zig Zag

Posted in Music with tags , , , on June 12, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Continuing the Cork theme Shimpu Zig Zag were a trio formed in 1985 by Liam Shanahan, John Shanahan and Jerry Fehily and joined in 1986 by Liam Murphy. I suspect today’s tracks were actually singles but I hope they are suitably obscure to merit inclusion. I don’t know why they spilt after only two singles but Jerry Fehily did end up joining The Hothouse Flowers. Photo courtesy

Passion Play (1985)

Mayday (1986)

Flex And The Fastweather (1985 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on June 11, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

flex & fastweatherOriginally from Cork but later Dublin based, Flex And The Fastweather at the time of the Fanning session were Paul Tiernan (vocals & guitar), Maurice Seezer aka The Man Seezer (keyboards), John O Sullivan (bass), Earl Gill Jnr (drums), John Stokes (guitar), Mandy Murphy and Carolyn Fox (backing vocals). Wayne Sheehy was on drums for ‘Behind The Wire’, followed by Dave Whyte circa single ‘The Darkness’, followed by John Donaghy when Flex took up a residency in of all places Stockholm, Sweden. All three tracks here I believe were from that Fanning session. ‘Whatever Happens To Girls Like Alice’ later appeared on the RTE Radio 2 / Hot Press Street Carnival Rock EP in 1986. ‘The Darkness’ appeared as a single in 1986 and there was one further single ‘Stan’ in 1987 according to The Irish Punk And New Wave Discography. Paul Tiernan has been active as a solo artist and has released 4 albums as well as appearing on irish TV as a member of Interference on RTE’s Other Voices series. Watch him interviewed and performing on TV3’s Ireland:AM. Maurice Seezer went on to collaborate with Gavin Friday contributing on a number of soundtracks including ‘In The Name Of The Father‘.

The Darkness

Behind The Wire

Whatever Happens To Girls Like Alice

The Onion Peelers

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , on June 10, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

From Dublin today’s track is a song from a demo circa 1988 by The Onion Peelers..

Nine Nine Nine

The Hitchers (1989 Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , on June 9, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

hitchers 1990

From Limerick The Hitchers appear to be semi active despite calling it a day in Feb 2001. This demo dates from 1989 and was delivered to The Fanning Show on DAT. Check out the wiki or read more about the band on their website. No mention over on the IPNWD for some reason. They recorded sessions for both Dave Fanning and John Peel in 1997 (making it to 21 of the Festive Fifty the same year with Strachan) and released numerous EPs and LPs. The lineup for the Peel session in 1997 was Andy Gallagher (lead guitar), Niall Quinn (drums, backing vocals), Eric Fitzgerald (guitar) and Hoss Carnage (bass) but this demo their first dates from 1989.

All This Everything (demo)

The Riordans

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on June 8, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

My memory has failed me on this one so I’m appealing for help. This song has been going round in my head all weekend so I’m going to share despite not knowing it’s title or origin.

Updated 23 July 2009 following a tipoff from Summerproject and an email exchange with Pat:

Comprising Pat Clafferty (vocals/acoustic guitar), Jill Hahn (guitar), Damien Byrne (bass) and Milo Madden (drums) The Riordans recorded at least three songs as part of this session, the others were ‘Which Road to Go?’ and ‘Dustbowl Dress’. They recorded a single for Mother Records in Windmill Lane which alas never saw the light of day. Jill and Pat went on to form Mexican Pets and were soon joined by Derrick Dalton of Hey Paulette on bass but that’s another story.

Blue Blue Blue

Lord John White (1986 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , , on June 4, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

lord john white - megamix

Today we have two three out of the four songs recorded by Lord John White for the Dave Fanning show circa 1986. This band later achieved success as Sack and released three albums.

Update: From Dublin, Lord John White were Martin McCann (vocals), John Brereton (guitar), Derek Lee (bass) and Tony Brereton (drums). Martin McCann was previously in Aiken Drum.

Swan The Pond

Van Norden Jumps In

Dream Flower

A House (1988 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on June 3, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

a house

Today we have two thirds of the second session by irish indie heroes A House. Dave Couse (vocals & guitar), Fergal Bunbury (guitar), Martin Healy (bass) and Dermot Wylie (drums) released five albums between 1988 and 1996 when they finally threw in the towel. Dave Couse of course went on to release two further solo records the most recent of which The World Should Know in 2005 was especially impressive. I personally still kick myself that I never took the opportunity to see his band tour that album because if their Other Voices: Songs From A Room performance was anything to go by they were one tight outfit. Please do yourself a favour and tune into his Today FM show on Sunday nights at 10pm as the guy still confounds expectations.

Looks like I’m not the only one who enjoyed that Other Voices performance. The Impossibles unfortunately are no more but were Pete Meighan (guitar), Simon Quigley (keyboards), Dave Flynn (bass) and Mike O’Dowd (drums) .

Violent Love
Anyone have this?

Stone The Crows

Hay When The Sun Shines

Dave Couse MySpace
ZOP (A House fansite)

Light A Big Fire (1984 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , on June 2, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Formed circa 1984 in Dublin featuring Thomas McLaughlin (vocals), Owen Conroy (vocals), Pete Dench (guitar), Pat Diskin (bass), Ray Rowland (drums). I saw Light A Big Fire in late 1985 in the then NIHE Limerick and they put on a hugely energetic show finishing up with a version of The Forest that seemed to go on forever. This is a session they did for the Fanning show in June 1984.

C.I.A. (1984)

You Can Love A Woman (1984)

I See People (1984)

Talking To Myself (1984)

Tuesday Blue (Demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , , on June 1, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


I’ll never forget the first time I saw Tuesday Blue live in The Savoy in Limerick. There was a lot of press about the band already and great things were promised. The room was like a exotic boudoir with incense burning, the music began and gradually the smoke around the stage dissipated to reveal Mick Ryan performing transcendental meditation. A seminal moment as they say. This demo track made it to number 31 in the 1986 Fanning Fab Fifty. The full lineup was Mick Ryan (vocals), Dave Keary (guitar), Ralf Lindheim (bass) and Liam Darcy (drums).

I’m So Scared

Something Happens!

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , on May 30, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Next up we have a demo from a band who went on to achieve considerable success but maybe didn’t always do themselves justice with their recorded output. Case in point was Burn Clear which I hope to dig out in the future but first up is another favourite which in demo form made 28th place in Fanning’s Fab Fifty in 1986.

Forget Georgia

33rd Hurricane

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , , on May 29, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Donegal doesn’t seem to be doing too bad, first The Wild Herrings and now today’s contribution who hail from Carndonagh. They are called 33rd Hurricane and this is a great demo track called ‘Like A Dream’. The quality is decidedly lo-fi but maybe that’s why it works so well. This was recorded from the radio in 1989. The normally reliable IPNWD has no entry but does list the presence of tracks ‘Goodbye’ and ‘December Days’ on the 1989 Danceline Records compilation ‘Nationwide 2’. They released one single I know of ‘Shotgun Blast’ / ‘Till I Find You’.

Update: 33rd Hurricane were Finbarr Doherty (vocals, guitar), Liam Bradley (drums, backing vocals), Delilah Cuddihy (keyboards, backing vocals), John McGrory (guitar), and Neil McGrory (bass). Finbarr wrote all the songs and ‘Like A Dream’ was recorded on a cassette 4 track recorder.

Finbarr Doherty is now performing as a solo artsist and has released albums ‘Across the Water‘ (1997) and most recently ‘Skyscrapers’ (2011). Check out his music on breakingtunes or on MySpace

Like A Dream (Demo)

Tru’penny Opera

Posted in demo, Fanning with tags , , , on May 26, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Trupenny Opera

Today’s track is a demo from Wexford band Tru’penny Opera. They are listed in the IPNWD but I’m not sure of the spelling. I tried to google the band but found nothing, what is it about Wexford and opera?

If You Were Right Then So Was I (1988)

Updated the spelling based on that used on the Nationwide compilation detailed here.

1 March 2014: Tru’penny Opera from Wexford were Michael Egan (guitars, vocals), Paul Merrigan (saxophone), Peter Murphy (drums), Noel Quaid (bass), Maurice McNamara (keyboards) and John Murphy (mandolin, harmonica). This lineup was active from 1987 to 1990.

Burning Embers

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , , on May 25, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Okay time for some music from Cork. Burning Embers were Sean O’Neill (vocals), John Poland (guitars), Niall Macken (keyboards), Mel Poland (bass), Gordon Ashe (drums). They sent Dave Fanning a demo in 1986 and this is one of the tracks. According to the Irish Rock Discography the band went on to release 3 singles and this song made the b-side of second single ‘Keep On Pushing’. The band also had a track ‘Sweet Young Lady’  feature on the Hot Press ‘Best Cork album in the world… ever!‘ concept album compiled by Paul O’Mahony and Jim Comet.

Stay (1986)

The Subterraneans – Maxi-Joy (demo)

Posted in demo, Fanning, Music with tags , , , on May 23, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Next up we have a demo from a Dublin band that appeared at number 41 in the 1986 Fab Fifty. It is of course Carling/Hot Press Band winners The Subterraneans. They also recorded a Fanning session in that year but I only have the demo recording. I also have a recording of Slum but will post that later (Update: done). Maxi Joy was eventually released as a single on Mother Records in 1987. Have a listen to that version here.



Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , on May 22, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

A Dublin based 3 piece who later earned fame and fortune as Rollerskate Skinny. This is the third track from a Fanning Session they did in 1990. Irish Music Central has a full profile of Rollerskate Skinny.


Backwards Into Paradise

Posted in Fanning, Music with tags , , , on May 21, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Todays post features a track from 1986 from Dublin three piece Backwards Into Paradise. You may be familiar with the band under their later abbreviated name Into Paradise in which guise they released a number of albums. I however am particularly fond of this track and hopefully when you listen you’ll see why.

Update: While researching today’s track I came across this interesting blog post which has some more detail. Apparently ‘Never The Same’ was released with ‘She Is Close’ on Snap-Owl Records in 1986.

Never The Same (1986)

The Slowest Clock (1988 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , , on May 20, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Formed in Dublin in 1986 The Slowest Clock were Frank Pryce (vocals), Gerry Fahy (guitar), Brian Neavyn (bass) and Pete Kinsella (drums). They recorded two Fanning Sessions and one for BBC’s Liz Kershaw. They released one single ‘Clarke & Jones’ in 1987 on Comet Records and two EPs ‘2 Car Garage’ and ‘No hand Signals’ in 1989 on Bewildered Records. They split in June 1990 never releasing their debut LP ‘Bewildered’ although a CD ‘Life Still‘ was released in 1994.

This is the second Fanning Session from 1988.. to read more and see them perform go here .

1. Turn Green

2. Where’s Andy

3. Going Home

4. Mothers of America

The Furious Colour (1986 Session)

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , , on May 19, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

I should probably make life easier for myself and only post tracks by bands that I know something about. Anyway today’s installment is by a band called The Furious Colour and is from a session recorded on 30th June 1986. The session featured 3 tracks, ‘Torn Apart’, ‘Carrion’ and ‘Closer’. In a review of Cork Folk Festival in a recently uncovered issue of Hot Press (Vol 11 No 19 Oct 8th 1987) Tony O’Donoghue writes:

The madness of a wonderful weekend was underlined by the trip from the Opera House to Sir Henrys. Here The Furious Colour were playing an inspired country-rock set with Kieran Kennedy and Liam Murphy swopping guitar licks to exhilaring effect.

Kieran Kennedy of course went on to form The Black Velvet Band with future wife Maria Doyle.

Closer (1986)

At The Window

Posted in Fanning, Music, session with tags , , , , , on May 18, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Next up are a band from Shannon called At The Window. Active in the late eighties although I’m not sure how much gigging they did. This session track is a particular favourite of mine and was recorded on 3rd and 4th Feb 1986, the two other session tracks were ‘City Lights’ and ‘Theme’.

State Aid

Dorian Mood

Posted in Music, session with tags , , , , on May 17, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Today’s tune is from a session recorded for the Dave Fanning show by Drogheda band Dorian Mood. Dorian Mood were Roland Hoek (vocals & guitar), John White (keyboards), Eamon Foley (bass) and Graham Hoek (drums). Check out for further details. If you are interested in the Drogheda music scene in the 80s then you might like to read this. The track may have been re-recorded as ‘It’s A Funny Thing’.. Watch Dorian Mood perform on RTE Visual Eyes in 1986.

Fallen Deep Inside

The Donnelly Brothers (1987 Session)

Posted in Music, session with tags , , , , , , on May 16, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


Hailing from Belfast and earning but a cryptic entry on the Help Wanted page of the Irish Punk & New Wave Discography. The music however speaks for itself. From a Fanning Session I think Dave decided..

The Donnelly Brothers have a MySpace page and here’s the bio:

The Donnelly Brothers were an indie band from West Belfast who existed between 1985 and 1989. The first line-up was Martin Burns (vocals), Bap McGreevy (lead guitar), Stephen ‘Punker’ McGreevy (bass), Paddy O’Neill (guitar) and Barney Carson (drums). The band played a few gigs around Belfast and made a few demos. Barney and Paddy left after a year to form their own band. A 14-year-old drummer named Ali Donnelly joined along with rhythm guitarist Nick Sadlier. The line-up of Burns, Bap, Punker, Nick and Ali played a few gigs, did a few demos, supported The Wedding Present on tour, played with The Jazz Butcher, The Prisoners and The Charlatans. The band recorded a session for the Dave Fanning Show on RTE in June 1987. It was broadcast twice on the radio station and led to a 2FM tour. The recordings on this page are from that Fanning session. Track three, Clawing at the Sky, is from the first demo in 1986.

Photo courtesy who now have a dedicated page for the band.

Mystery Machine

The Stunning

Posted in Music, session with tags , , , , on May 15, 2009 by Fanning Sessions


I only managed to catch one song from this particular session but it’s a favourite. I went to see The Stunning with a good friend in The Golden Grill in Letterkenny and it was an amazing gig, the boys were in top form. If I remember correctly there were a few mighty covers ‘Ring Of Fire’ and ‘Ruby’ thrown in for good measure.

Tightrope Walker

The Wild Herrings (1987 Session)

Posted in Music, session with tags , , , , , , on May 14, 2009 by Fanning Sessions

Updated following some great comments so make sure to read them. Look forward to more feedback and thanks for taking the time to post!

Photo (c) Irene Pender

The Wild Herrings were formed in Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal in 1985 and remained active until 1987. The band consisted of John Kane (guitar), Fiona Pender (vocals and sax), Irene Pender (vocals), Patsy O Kane (bass) and Michael Christie (drums). Four of the Wild Herrings went on to form punk-pop group The Malfunctions who reached 27 in the single charts. The Malfunctions (minus singer Fiona) became Georgia who knocked Bryan Adams off number 1 with their single “Sends Me High” on Danceline Records only to be disqualified because too many of the sales were in the north-west of Ireland! Micheal Christie is currently active with The Boxtie Band. I never managed to see them live, maybe they didn’t make it as far south as Limerick but have read of a Bundoran gig. I was lucky enough to catch their Fanning Session though and thankfully record it. The quality isn’t great but hopefully that won’t detract too much from what I think are some standout tunes. Without further ado..

Update: Fiona and Irene are back gigging again as The Pender Sisters and have played a couple of shows in Derry at Sandinos and Cafe Del Mondo. They are playing a post Christmas show in Dicey Reilly’s bar in Ballyshannon on December 27th from 10.30 to 12.30 if you’d like to catch them.

Up Donegal

Buy Me A Drink

Fat Politicians

Crash & Burn