A music blog from Ireland.
Padraig O’Reilly plays guitar and sings in Dublin’s quirky indie quartet Yeh Deadlies. A founding member of the Popical Island Collective, he is married to Annie Tierney, fellow member of Yeh Deadlies and Tieranniesaur. Having just released their debut album The First Book of Lessons, April’s Soundtrack seemed the perfect opportunity to find out more about Padraig’s musical preferences.
Are you particularly fond of any specific genre of music or are your tastes diverse?
My tastes are diverse to a point but I reckon you could still safely say that my tastes are kind of indie-led. If I like metal it’s probably the same metal, or if I like funk or world music it’s probably the same funk or world music that other indie kids like. I suppose I like to think my tastes are diverse but I’m not going to fool myself either. There’s an awful lot of music out there relative to the fraction that I or most people roughly my same age who are in ‘indie’ bands will actually listen to.
Can you remember the first piece of music that moved or inspired you?
That’s a tricky one…I have various early memories of being moved by music, I think I was sensitive to it from a young age. I grew up with older brothers who were always playing stuff in the house. They listened to Orange Juice, U2, a House, Something Happens and things like that. A funny story: I remember getting the Lion King soundtrack on cassette because I wanted to listen to the stampede part over and over and over again.
Is there any kind of music you’d like to know/hear more of?
What influenced your decision to choose a career in a band?
I suppose in truth I’d have to say that I never wanted a “career” in a band. I might take it now if it was handed over on a plate. Should have thought about this sooner.
How much time do you spend listening to music now? Has it de/increased over time?
I listen to less music right now than I used to, but I spend a lot more time playing music. I still listen to music at least daily in one way or another. I very rarely do that thing anymore where I get obsessed with an album and listen incessantly, that would have been typical for me when I as a teenager.
Do you prefer live music or listening from home?
Each have their own benefits. It depends on the band and the venue, your mood and too many variables to mention. I do find sometimes that seeing a band live can communicate more to you. There’s so much more information being put across.
How often would you spend at gigs that aren’t your own?
I go to a lot of gigs!
Would they be Irish or international bands? Any genre more so than the other?
Mostly Irish. And mostly indie, if that even counts as a useful description of genre! I rarely go to bigger international bands’ gigs and I sometimes regret it afterwards. I think I need to get back into the habit.
Where does Irish music come on your playlists? Are you a fan of home-grown bands?
I listen to a lot of Irish music, past and present. Some is stuff I really love but I also keep one ear on new bands just out of curiosity. I think it’s possible these days to listen almost exclusively to Irish bands, such is the diversity of the music being made here.
What do you think of the climate of the Irish music scene? Is it a good place to be a musician right now?
That depends on what you mean. I certainly love it, I’m having a great time! It’s not easy to make money within the Irish scene, so I suppose the answer to that question depends on your expectations of being in a band. I think people should be entitled to make a living out of music, but I don’t think it’s easy for bands right now.
If you could experience a musical era what would it be?
Toughie! They’d never be as good as they are with the benefit of hindsight!
Name some albums you find timeless and explain their appeal….
I think lo-fi recordings like Sentridoh and Palace Brothers have a timeless quality because of the absence of studio fingerprints. I love the sound of The Nerves’ Many Roads To Follow, for example. I absolutely adore John and Alan Lomax’s field recordings. I grew up thinking Steve Albini was king of the studio so I suppose his recordings are embedded in my brain somewhere too… I’ll choose Rapeman’s Two Nuns And A Pack Mule. I love how you can hear the joins in Joe Meeks’ home recordings. He is resolved not to let the means of production determine his ability to capture the music in his head and as a result some of the sounds he makes are actually kind of ugly. He’s kind of bullish in the studio and you get this bloody-minded self-expression coupled with what’s usually the most generic of music. That contradiction is very interesting to me. I made a Joe Meek mixtape I can send on to you.
I love the sound of these:
Link Wray – Summer Dreams (amazing!!!) [No online sources unforts - Nay]
Now choose some modern tunes that you’ve really enjoyed.
That’s hard! I’m wary of listing a load of people that I know personally, so I’ll just exlude any of those.
Wilco – Impossible Germany
Harlem – Witch Greens
What do you think constitutes awful music?
That’s a hard one too. I suppose I don’t like stuff with no personality of its own. Obviously all music sounds like things that have gone before but I don’t like when I hear music that doesn’t have anything to say. Wait- that sounds pretentious. Some music just sounds cowardly to me. I don’t like music that sounds like it’s hiding behind a pose more than it’s expressing something genuine. Any answer I give here, I’d be able to choose stuff I love that commits the crime.
You’ve hijacked RTE at prime time and the DJ’s tied up in a corner. Choose five songs you think the nation HAS to hear.
Obviously I’d just play our new album.
I keed! – Let’s just say here’s five I’d like to hear if I turned on the radio right now.
1. The Kinks – Around The Dial
2. My Bloody Valentine – Sunny Sundae Smile
3. Mumblin Deaf Ro – What’s To Be Done With El Salvador?
4. The Sharades – Dumb Head
5. Can – The Thief