Every month we take a look back at the best new releases from Northern Ireland in our featured playlist. A showcase for the sheer amount of talent coming out of the North, and a playlist worthy of repeat listening. This month’s cover artist is No Oil Paintings. Words by Aaron Cunningham.
No Oil Paintings – What Good Does it Do
“What Good Does It Do?” is a personal admission of the futility of one’s own anger and frustration. An enraged and impassioned plea for better temperament, delivered sonically by the band with a fury equal to that which the song’s lyrics portray.”
A strong showing for the first single following news of a debut album. Chris Kelly’s vocal hollers over simmering folk, ‘What Good Does It Do’ represents the band’s signature vocal harmonies and sound to the letter. The album can’t come soon enough.
Niall McDowell – Tennessee
Songwriting with a country lilt that follows on from the brilliant ‘Do You Think I’m Pretty?’, ‘Tennessee’ bolsters Niall McDowell’s growing appeal. McDowell’s vocal croon sits at home on this heartfelt track that bridges an almost selfish yearning with self aware humour.
Jordan Adetunji – Wasting Time
Following a Stendhal set that was full of enthusiasm and fire, Jordan Adetunji releases one of his best singles in a bit. ‘Wasting Time’ is a built on a hooked vocal and quickfire beats and Adetunji’s unmatched flow.
Charlie Hanlon – Kids Today
A straight up indie bop from the young Downpatrick songwriter, ‘Kids Today’ deals with teenage small town tropes. Charlie Hanlon possesses easy indie charm and the knack for a solid tune.
Sarah Toner – You’re Not Thinking of Me
Sarah Toner’s first single is a slow and sorrowful burn written about the end of a relationship that lays out her emotions and distrust across the song’s six minutes. Toner’s voice is entwined with simple guitar, with both rising from melancholia to a flourish of anger and drama towards the song’s end.
Shane Devine – Ruin My Life
The twee whistles of ‘Ruin My Life’s hook falls back to the song’s smooth and woozy soul. ‘Ruin My Life’ is a wonderfully blissed out tale as the clouds clear, and a track that may affirm the hand of producer Ryan McGroarty (Beauty Sleep).