Whelan’s Ones to Watch kicks off tonight until Sunday night for what will be an incredible weekend of undiscovered Irish music. Some of which I know and a lot of which I have had a very satisfying day perusing through. This is by no way an extensive list, and if you can go and see everyone playing by all means, absolutely do! Everyone on the Whelan’s Ones to Watch list is phenomenal, this is a small selection of who I think you should make sure you go to see.
Thursday of Whelan’s Ones to Watch
Eve Belle has a smooth sound. A vibe reminiscent of sweet country folk queen Cheryl Crow mixed with that haunting celtic twang of Lisa Hannigan, Eve really is quite something. She’s immediately captivating and is surely going to win audiences at Ones to Watch.
Little One burst onto the scene in 2017 with a shimmering burst of beautiful indie pop. Hypnotising harmonious, over a bed of celestial music which builds to intensification, make them ones not to miss at the Ones to Watch weekend.
The Woodburning Savages
A long time champion of all things Woodburning Savages, I highly recommend going to catch them at Ones to Watch. Their raw energy will have you jumping till there’s no more jump left. Their punk sensibilities are refreshing, getting right back to the core of rock’n’roll; long hair, big riffs, banging anthems and just really good music. Don’t miss them!
Grunge pop melodies mixed with perfect harmonies are enough of a reason to go see Girlfriend. On hearing ‘Don’t come to my funeral’ I immediately think ‘Mouldy Peaches’ and want to hear more which brings me to ‘Kill them all’; garage punk rock brilliance. They have a quirky uniqueness and a sound I’m really excited about. They’re that kind of underground band that only REALLY cool people know about but it won’t stay that way forever. Looking forward to hear A LOT more from Girlfriend
Friday of Whelan’s Ones to Watch
An artist I have been a huge fan of for quite some time, Molly Sterling is definitely one to watch. Her powerful vocal mixed with beautifully intense lyrics will completely captivate. Molly is a stellar performer with a massive career ahead of her, catch her in this intimate setting while you still have the chance.
If you’re not already following Munky on Facebook for their hilarious videos, you should be for their funky blend of folk rock. They have a compelling Americana sound that’s sure to have you rockin’ to the early hours. Make them your ones to watch this weekend.
If experimental instrumental rock is your thing, Bicurious will delight you at Ones to Watch. Their music will not only suck you in for sheer enjoyment but make you conscious of world events in a thought provoking way by sampling speeches with atmospheric, energetic rock. Make sure to have them on your watch list.
Saturday of Whelan’s One to Watch
Creating atmospheric music to get lost in, BODIES offer compelling watching at Ones to Watch. Their ethereal sound is captivating and nothing short of completely stunning. They’ll bring a transcendent and tranquil vibe to the evening.
Admittedly, perusing through the Ones To Watch line-up there’s some names I had never heard of, which is the absolutely fabulous thing about who you discover due to this event. ZaPho is one such artist and boy am I delighted with this introduction. A funky fresh sound, Zapho’s electro/grunge/pop sound is audibly pleasing. Definitely one for your Ones to Watch list.
For Foresters have that sound which makes you immediately stand to attention. So delicate, like smooth silk, giving the perfect satisfaction. It’s the kind of music that rips right through you, taking the wind out of your sails and leaving you breathless. Their live performance offers an intensity which is hard to match, the type which creates a relationship between band and each audience member; everyone taking something special for themselves. Do yourselves a favour and see For Foresters this weekend.
One of the standout acts from the weekend is sure to be from Derry artist, Roe. Her youthful exuberance is rivalled only by her immense musical talent. A multi-instrumentalst, Roe has fantastic command on stage, with a fun and catchy sound. She will have the full attention of the Ones to Watch audience crowd.
Sunday of Whelan’s Ones to Watch
Another act I’ve been championing for years, I was first introduced to Ailie’s incredible voice in 2007/2008 in a small theatre in Leitrim. Ten years on, and Ailie continues to amaze. A voice of an angel with that stunning traditional Irish twang, Ailie’s music is like poetry sung I’m the most beautiful way. Make sure to catch her at Ones to Watch.
For some really gratifying, rip-roaring rock’n’roll, put Sub Motion on your must see list this weekend. With a commanding stage presence, a powerful lead vocal and majorly talented musicians, they have a fantastic energy which is sure to rip through the crowd like a lightning bolt. Be ready for the energy of this one.
Moon Looks On
Again another undiscovered act to me until now but an incredibly welcome one. Somewhat a Tracey Chapman and Ray Lamontagne feel, Moon Looks On has that gorgeous country rock twang which you could listen intently to for hours on end. Moon Looks On is extremely uplifting, a gig you’ll walk away from with a smile. He’s certainly one I’ll be following with great interest.