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Dublin Music: Heroes shine in local gig

By Greg Synnott

Bouts rock the stage at the Hard Working Class Heroes Festival

One hundred bands, six venues, and three days are what make up the 10th anniversary of the Hard Working Class Heroes Festival.

A festival dedicated to showcasing new and emerging music in Ireland, it gives new musicians and fans alike an opportunity to sit in on panels with journalists, music executives and promoters. It also gives them a chance to get some real insight into how the music industry works, how it is changing and what we can expect to come about in the future.

The entire weekend can be considered a success with a strong line-up of some of Ireland’s best emerging acts in some of the country’s nicer, if not smaller venues, showcasing just how big Ireland’s burgeoning music scene is. Everywhere was full, but not packed, a comfortable crowd to be in.

The festival has grown in leaps and bounds every year as it has added more bands, venues and industry elements to the mix. The Meeting House Square, located in front of the IFI in Temple bar, was probably one of the best places to showcase some of the best acts of the weekend.

What can only be considered Ireland’s best addition to the electronic scene, Le Galaxie headlined the Meeting House Square on Friday night with a packed-in crowd. Their hour long set was one to be remembered and firmly plants Le Galaxie as one of the best live acts to come out of Ireland.

Slow Skies’ Karen Sheridan’s vocals are some to be admired and leave you wanting more. Her set in the Workman’s Club was short and plagued by some basic tuning issues in the beginning but once she opened her mouth, all was forgotten as the crowd lost themselves in the music.

Kid Karate are one of those acts I knew little about and had no idea what to expect. With their debut album out in February, Kid Karate have plenty of material and in being joined on bass by Ian of Squarehead and Tieranniesaur, the lads cemented themselves as ones to watch in the future. Heavy hitters all round.

Honourable mentions for the weekend go out to bands Croupier, Bouts, and A Dark Horse. 

Although the weekend was packed with some fantastic live acts, it was not without its problems. With only 10 minutes between sets, bands never had ample time to set themselves up, giving every sound engineer a headache of problems. Hard Working Class Heroes has clearly grown over the last 10 years and hopefully will continue to do so.

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