Immersed within the darkness of Bello Bar’s basement, three bands took to the stage for a night of longing ballads, funky tunes, and some amazing drum solos. The first two bands, Burglar and Evie, were alternative folk-pop inspired bands. They supported Moon Talk, the rock headliner of the show, with Burglar starting off the night!
Burglar (@burglar.band) provides a mellow combination of bedroom pop and shoegaze. Their music feels like a sunlit bedroom, muted earth tones and the smell of sage. Overall their sound is both echoey and comforting, with an undercurrent of strong bass guitar and solid drumming. Standout songs from the night included “Mosh”, a song which vocalist and guitarist Eduardo Pinheiro explained was about low self-esteem, with the title being a play on words of the French word “moche” meaning ugly and “Bombshell,” a self-described funky sounding song, with minor tones galore and a truly funky bassline from bassist Cormac Nugent. Throughout the set, the vocals were a standout, with the harmonies between Eduardo and fellow vocalist/guitarist Willow Hannon ringing throughout the venue. Simultaneously, Ben Coffey worked his magic on the drums, which added to the dynamic atmosphere.
Next in the line-up was Evie (@eviemusicdublin), a five-member group that included a violinist. Their sound is beautifully haunting and folksy; Evie Kelly’s deeper vocals and Jennifer Montgomery’s harmony stick in your head days after you hear it and the band has such a cohesive feel and sound, sure to entrance anyone who listens. Standout songs include “Astronaut,” which sounded very Sufjan Stevens-like, with a layered sound to it like no other, “My Boy,” a song with lyrics heavy on the imagery, a melancholic, twangy guitar and a bass drum that acts as the song’s heartbeat. The set’s second half included more upbeat songs, showcasing Clara Lee’s violin skills through some solos, Matthew Wood’s fascinating drumstick collection and Joe Barford’s upbeat bass guitar lines. Inspired by alternative folk artists such as Laura Marling and Phoebe Bridgers, check out Evie if you like songs that feel like snow on a quiet day or the energetic crackle of pine wood in a hearth fire.”
“The feeling of fellow audience members jostling around the front of the stage is an experience you can never grow tired of, as the energy is infectious and radiant”
Last and most certainly not least, was the headliner of the night, Moon Talk (@itsmoontalk)! A four-man group with a synth as the special addition, a refreshingly retro sounding band with strong vocals from Jack Walsh and some funky synth action from Alessandro Loro. The intro they played was surprisingly jazzy and blues-y in nature, which was a nice tonal change from the previous two bands. My standout songs were “Home to Me,” a straightforward, 80s classic rock, bass-forward sound that brings to mind men’s cologne, a leather jacket, and maybe a little hairspray in the mix, and “My Heart,” a slower song with muted drums that served as a good interlude in the set. There was also an improvised jam session in the middle of all of this, which was an absolute ball to watch, especially when drummer Kevin Huang-Wu had his moment in the spotlight with an insane solo that impressed the whole venue. Other standouts included, “Are You Bitter”, which came rocking in with a majestic intro, grandiose chords with scattered drumming and a strong bassline from Chris May à la Led Zeppelin – which by the end dialled up the energy in the room to a ten and had everyone jumping around – and “Paint Your Lips,” a song with inspired synth using plucky, 70s funk-inspired chords and vintage, slightly higher-pitched vocals. The crowd sang along for this one, which made the performance feel so much more intimate. The feeling of fellow audience members jostling around the front of the stage is an experience you can never grow tired of, as the energy is infectious and radiant.
When talking to them after their set, I asked them who they were inspired by and what their plans for the future are. They named artists such as Jeff Buckley, Radiohead, and John Mayer as their main musical muses; think indie rock ballads and RnB! As for future plans, continued work as a band on music production and shows are on the programme.
“The transition from the gently upbeat sound of Burglar to the melodic melancholy of Evie, and finally to the powerhouse that was Moon Talk, made it a night to remember”
Overall, all three bands were incredible. The transition from the gently upbeat sound of Burglar to the melodic melancholy of Evie, and finally to the powerhouse that was Moon Talk, made it a night to remember.
If you like the sound of any of them, make sure to check them out online through the Instagram handles by their names, or go to a gig in-person!