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David Gray: a Century Ends
David Gray: a Century Ends British singer/songwriter David Gray had already built a respectable, if commercially overlooked career as a folk-rock artist in the mid-'90s before his innovative fourth album, White Ladder, brought his mix of acoustic instruments and electronic samples into the mainstream. Self-released in 1998, it was picked up by ATO in 2000 and eventually made its way to number one in the U.K. over a year later, by which time Gray's raspy, soaring vocals and introspective folktronica had become internationally ubiquitous thanks to singles like "Babylon" and "Please Forgive Me." Gray's popularity remained strong throughout the middle part of the decade thanks to releases like 2005's Life in Slow Motion and a pair of Greatest Hits anthologies focused on different periods of his career, both of which appeared in 2007. A prolific run of back-to-back albums (2009's Back in Line and 2010's Foundling) carried him into the next decade, though it would be another four years before he produced another album. Resurrecting his own IHT record label, the one he'd initially used to release the home-recorded White Ladder 16 years prior, Gray issued 2014's Mutineers, followed by 2019's Gold in a Brass Age and 2021's Skellig, three quality independent releases which, in a sense, saw him come full-circle with his D.I.Y. approach. A Century Ends Born in Manchester in 1968, Gray relocated to Wales at the age of nine before returning to the northwest to attend the University of Liverpool. While in school, he dabbled in several punk bands and began exploring different styles of writing, eventually uncovering his own poetic penmanship. Following a move to London, Gray signed to Hut Records in the United Kingdom and Caroline in the United States, releasing the debut single "Birds Without Wings" in 1992. The next year saw the release of his first full-length record, A Century Ends, and Gray's trademark style of fiery vocals countered with folksy, acoustic songcraft began to find an audience, particularly in Ireland. However, despite frequent solo tours (as well as an opening slot for Shawn Colvin), Gray's edgy sophomore effort, Flesh, was met with an underwhelming response in 1994, and he was dropped from his label as a result. Sell, Sell, Sell Gray signed a contract with EMI Records; meanwhile, the buzz in Ireland continued to build thanks to No Disco, an alternative music video program that showcased Gray every chance it got. Hanging onto that thread, Sell, Sell, Sell arrived in 1996 in limited quantities. Gray hitched up his touring boots and hit the road again, this time opening for such heavy-hitters as Radiohead and Dave Matthews Band, but a lack of mainstream response resulted in Gray's split from EMI. Recapturing and embracing his independence, he decided to self-finance his fourth album, White Ladder, and release it on his own label, IHT Records, in 1998. Recorded in a London apartment with an easy blend of samplers and acoustic guitar, White Ladder was a sublime leap forward for the underappreciated Gray. Ireland certainly recognized its merit, as the record immediately climbed into the Irish Top 30. Gray found other outlets for promotion as well, offering five tunes (including the elegiac title track) to the soundtrack of This Year's Love. The good fortune continued as former road pal Dave Matthews (who had taken a liking to Gray during their shared tour) made White Ladder the first release on his own ATO Records imprint in 2000. Boosted by this additional release, "Babylon" enjoyed a positive reception in the U.S. and peaked at number five on the U.K. charts. Its success coincided with Gray's performance on the main stage at Glastonbury, and White Ladder went on to enjoy multi-platinum sales. Lost Songs 95-98 Gray celebrated his newfound recognition by issuing a handful of albums in 2001, including a pair of compilations (Lost Songs 95-98 and The EP's 92-94) and two reissued records (A Century Ends and Flesh). Although his popularity remained greater in Europe, he maintained moderate success in the States as well, and A New Day at Midnight followed up his successful international breakthrough in the fall of 2002. Gray worked with producer Marius de Vries (Björk, Rufus Wainwright) for 2005's Life in Slow Motion; the reflective album debuted at the top of the charts in both Ireland and the U.K., giving Gray the highest chart rankings of his career. The singer then cobbled together his older material for 2007's Shine: The Best of the Early Years. The career-spanning Greatest Hits followed that fall, featuring two previously unissued tracks as well as Gray's most popular numbers. The Best of David Gray Once again, Gray found himself without a record label as he prepared to work on his eighth studio album. After setting up shop in his own London studio, dubbed the Church Studios, Gray began shaping his first set of original material since 2005. Vocalists Annie Lennox and Jolie Holland joined him on several songs, and the resulting Draw the Line was released in 2009 by both Polydor and Mercer Street Records. "Fugitive" became a Top 40 hit in America, and the album itself charted well in multiple countries. Gray quickly returned with another album, Foundling, which drew its material from the Draw the Line sessions and hit stores less than 12 months after the previous album's release. His next record, Mutineers, was recorded at Church Studios and produced by Andy Barlow of Lamb. The June 2014 album was preceded by the single "Gulls," which marked a change of direction for Gray, morphing from a minimalist, almost ambient, keyboard-led arrangement to a dark, noisy, powerfully haunting chorus. He returned in 2016 with The Best of David Gray, which featured highlights from some of his most acclaimed records as well as two previously unreleased tracks, "Smoke Without Fire" and "Enter Lightly." This compilation set the stage for the March 2019 release of Gold in a Brass Age, his first set of new songs in five years. Gray returned in 2021 with Skellig, his 12th studio LP, that featured a significant set of contributions from Irish collaborators. 2023 saw Gray contribute a version of "Place to Be" to The Endless Coloured Ways, a collection of songs penned by English folk legend Nick Drake.
Sister Act the Musical
Sister Act the Musical is a lively and entertaining event taking place in Ireland. Based on the hit comedy film from the 1990s, this musical follows the story of Deloris Van Cartier, a wannabe diva who witnesses a crime and is placed in protective custody in a convent. Disguised as a nun, Deloris brings her unique style and music to the convent choir, transforming them into a soulful sensation. Filled with memorable songs, energetic dance numbers, and hilarious moments, Sister Act the Musical promises to be a fun-filled and uplifting experience for all.
Evilevent is a prominent heavy metal music festival that takes place in Ireland. It brings together some of the biggest names in the metal scene, both national and international, to perform on multiple stages over the course of a few days. The festival attracts metal enthusiasts from all over the country and even from abroad. Aside from the incredible lineup of bands, Evilevent also offers a vibrant and exciting atmosphere, with various food and drink options, merch stands, and opportunities to meet artists. It is a celebration of all things metal and has established itself as a must-attend event for fans of the genre in Ireland.
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Roy Orbison Reborn Starring Dean Bourne
Roy Orbison Reborn, starring Dean Bourne, is a captivating musical event that pays tribute to the iconic American singer-songwriter, Roy Orbison. The show features Dean Bourne, an award-winning performer who closely resembles Orbison both in appearance and vocal style. With a remarkable four-octave range, Bourne skillfully recreates Orbison's unique sound and delivers a mesmerizing performance that brings the legendary artist's music to life. From Orbison's biggest hits including "Oh, Pretty Woman," "Crying," and "Only the Lonely," to lesser-known gems, the audience is taken on a nostalgic journey through Orbison's incredible musical career. With the backing of a stellar band and stunning visuals, Roy Orbison Reborn is an unforgettable experience that transports fans back in time to enjoy the timeless music of this revered rock 'n' roll legend.