A music blog from Ireland.
This weekend was a low-budget affair but one of choice rather than necessity. I spent Thursday night at the Fallow Records launch at the Joinery and on Friday, headed to a new arts space called Siteation in the Little Green Street Gallery. It was one of the most varied and enjoyable weekends I’ve had in a long time. I want to write more about Fallow and its new releases when I have a little extra time, but first, want to share a few thoughts on the Siteation experience.
Alternative arts spaces have been a big success in recent years, even though they don’t make much money which is badly needed for rent and overheads. A cynic might say that the bring-your-own-booze policies are what appeal to punters but I think it’s something more sentimental: there’s a satisfaction that comes from witnessing music and art in a dedicated environment and a feeling of mattering in knowing that your admission money is what keeps the place open rather than the profits from the bar.
In Siteation we’re set to experience all the perks of music and art installations that have proved popular in other spaces to date, but with the team backgrounds, there’s an extra emphasis on drama which is a refreshing change and definitely a different way to start a night. Helena Tobin and Barry O’Donovan plan to hold drama workshops on the site, which is situated on two floors of a corner building that lies tucked between Capel Street and Smithfield Fruit Market, as well as other fun pastimes such as art and photography exhibitions, gigs and DJ sets.
On Friday night, I arrived just in time for Darren Caffrey’s spoken word performance in which he played Luke, and lambasted an unseen Darth-dad. Next up was a young man armed with a marker and his own skin, paper, a tangerine, bicycle wheel and violin bow: there is no way to describe the incredulity as you wondered what he would do next, and why, but it was my favourite of all the performances because I found it so far removed from the comfort zone of licensed premises. Another man role-played a patient with mental health issues and did so very effectively…there were glimmers of truth and parody throughout all the acts that gave my brain a juicing before it was time to fling off the restraints of propriety and get down to serious tunes booming from the decks downstairs, where the DJs played an absolute blinder into the early hours of Saturday morning. With no curfew thanks to its location and a great team who know how to make work fun, stepping outside just as the fruit market’s forklift trucks began to rattle over the cobbles for another day’s work, it struck me that Siteation has everything going for it to become as well-loved a venue as the Joinery. All it needs is support and the money to stay open. This is my first attempt at a helping hand in this respect: if you’d like to pitch in, they’d love to see you at the Grand Social tonight for an uproarious table quiz fundraiser.