Music

Noise Annoys: Thursday brings hard choices for Belfast gig-goers

Jeffrey Lewis & Los Bolts play McHugh's next week

NOISE Annoys is positively groaning under the weight of all the music and gig news it contains this week, so to spare its suffering let's get on with explaining why you should all be planning to attend the Jeffrey Lewis & Los Bolts show at McHugh's in Belfast next Thursday.

Apart from the fact Jeff is an awesome songwriter, comic book artist and all round great guy, his current band with Los Bolts AKA Heather and Caitlin – with who he recorded last year's rather good Manhattan LP, still available on the Rough Trade label in record shops everywhere (although at this stage you might as well just wait and buy one at the gig) – seem to have really clicked with each other.

The trio nail a stark recording of long-time live favourite, the DIY muso lament Support Tours, dig in to the dreamy slow-burning break-up psychedelia of the album's semi-title track Back To Manhattan and get down with gusto on Sad Screaming Old Man's mesmeric, nightmarish garage jangler – but three highlights from a record that finds the multi-talented New Yorker in particularly fine form.

Obviously, Jeff has a lot of competition on the night from the fantastic Richmond Fontaine at Voodoo and 60s legends The Zombies, the latter of whom will be making their belated Belfast debut just a couple of hundred yards away in the CQAF Marquee.

Short of cloning yourself – or, perhaps only slightly more realistically, some joined up thinking on the part of the respective venues in terms of start times – hard choices will have to be made.

Onwards to another soon-to-be-playing-in Belfast band, Ought, the Canadian alt rock combo whose most recent LP, Sun Coming Down, finds them doing a fine job of conjuring dynamic, atmospheric post punk topped with singer Tim Darcy's Fall-inspired vocal bent.

The result sounds not unlike Pavement covering Fugazi, or perhaps vice-versa. Decide for yourself by seeking out the record in your preferred format and/or attending the Montreal-based quartet's early-doors live concert performance on Sunday night at Voodoo.

Tickets are £10 via Strangevictory.com and support comes from Autumns (FB.com/Autumns.Band) and Junk Drawer (Junkdrawerbelfast.bandcamp.com) and doors are at 6pm.

Have I mentioned the upcoming PRS for Music Presents show featuring Jealous Of The Birds (Jealousofthebirds.bandcamp.com), The Clameens (Facebook.com/TheClameens) and Katharine Philippa (Katharinephilippa.com) at Oh Yeah in Belfast – recently named as PRS Foundation Talent Development Partners for 2016 – yet?

Consider it mentioned now, then – the date for your diary is, you guessed it, Thursday April 28. Doors are at 6pm, so those planning on heading to Jeff and/or Richmond Fontaine might well be able to catch at least one act at this free entry event, for which you'll need to secure a ticket in advance via Oheahbelfast.com.

Finally for this week, a reminder that Therapy?'s excellent new single Tides is out now both as a digital download and an actual physical CD, complete with entirely appropriate Husker Du-inspired cover art.

The lead track finds Andy, Michael and Neil channelling the Du's mighty power crunch through their own distinctive hook-laden clatter to create one of the veteran trio's finest pop moments in recent memory.

As an added bonus, buyers get three bonus songs – known as b-sides in ye olden days of yore – in the form of two unreleased T? originals and a remix of a highlight from their current Disquiet LP.

Smile or Die and Slippies both have a rough demo-like quality that suits their catchy, punky charms to a T, the latter boasting a particularly huge chorus that a lot of bands would kill to base an actual single around, while the Pitchphase Remix of Insecurity transforms this headbanger into goth disco floor-filler fodder that's much more satisfyingly listenable (and danceable) than most of the remixes featured on the band's big 1990s singles.

Buy now at Amazingrecordco.com.

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