Music | Ben Howard announces second Irish show

Ben Howard has announced dates for his “I Forget Where We Were” UK And Ireland Tour. Due to demand, Ben has added another date at The Olympia Theatre, Dublin on 8 December.

The six shows, in support of Ben’s forthcoming second album, “I Forget Where We Were”, kick off In Manchester on 3 December and concludes with two nights at London’s Brixton Academy on the 10 and 11 December.

Tickets for Ben’s Olympia date are priced from €33.50 are on sale from Ticketmaster.

“I Forget Where We Were”, on 20 October through Island Records.

Ben Howard Tour Dates:

3 December – The Apollo, Manchester

4 December – Civic, Wolverhampton

6 December – Usher Hall, Edinburgh

7 December – Olympia, Dublin

10 December – Brixton Academy, London

11 December – Brixton Academy, London

Music | Empire Empire! (I Was A Lonely Estate) release acoustic video for ‘Ribbon’

Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) have released an acoustic version of ‘Ribbon’ (the first track from ‘You Will Eventually Be Forgotten’).  The video was filmed prior to US festival BLED Fest in May.

The duo returned with an anticipated new album “You Will Eventually Be Forgotten”.  Constant touring and a litany of splits and EPs (12 splits and 4 EP’s since their last LP) have made the band tighter than ever.

Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) is a husband/wife duo of Keith and Cathy Latinen, hailing from the tiny town of Fenton, Michigan.   Originally beginning as a solo project in 2006 has since grown into a full-time gig.

“You Will Eventually Be Forgotten” is out 19 August on Topshelf Records.

Technology | Doctor Who arrives to Minecraft on Xbox

Microsoft Studios, Mojang and the BBC have announced a deal to bring Doctor Who, the longest running science fiction television drama in the world, to Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition. As part of this deal, Minecraft fans will be able to use characters from the Doctor Who series in cool new skin packs, the first of which will launch in September.

Players will have access to a wide selection of the best characters from the entire 50 years of Doctor Who, with six Doctors in each skin pack – starting off with the 11th Doctor and five other Doctors, their companions, their biggest adversaries and the Doctors’ arch-enemy, the Daleks. Doctor Who puts you at the heart of an extraordinary adventure and Minecraft fans are in for the ride! Watch for the first skin pack coming soon.

Theatre | A quick chat with Lords of Strut ahead of their Tiger Dublin Fringe show

Lords of Strut bring “CHAOS” to The Abbey Theatre’s Peacock Stage this September as part of Tiger Dublin Fringe Festival.  RobMoro caught up with the two messers to talk Edinburgh Fringe, Fashion, and the ‘idiot proof’ secret to life and happiness.

RM: How are Seantastic and Famous Seamus enjoying Edinburgh Fringe at the moment?

LoS: Exhausting, inspiring, brilliant and lots of fun, and did we mention exhausting!

RM: Is it your first time performing at Edinburgh?

LoS: Its our second year bringing a show for a full run but we have been here a couple of times before working the streets and cabaret circuit.

RM: You have been described as “Ireland’s most emotional dancers sharing their ‘idiot proof’ secret to life and happiness”. What is your secret?

LoS: Well we have to remember that the Lords of Strut are characters who are more like caricatures of F list celebrities who are chasing fame in what ever way they can get it but with very little social awareness. They think they are very smart and have found a message that will improve people’s lives and bring them closer to fame. It’s both true and false at the same time.

RM: So what do Seantastic and Famous Seamus do to unwind after the show?

LoS: Tell each other how terrible and wonderful they were during the show and then find the nearest dance floor!

RM: Where did you learn your circus style performance moves?

LoS: From meeting other circus performers, backstage, on the street in fields and even going to workshops but mostly just seeing stuff and trying it!

RM: You do a number of street shows as well, what is the best and worst thing about those shows?

LoS: Best thing is that you have to make a show on a street somewhere out of nothing except you and the people walking past. If you get a good one it can be the buzziest show you can do, but it can also sometimes really not work out and you end up feeling like and amateur, that’s the risk of the street.

RM: Those costumes though, who is in charge of fashion?

LoS: Sean-tastic, he buys all the costumes, and has to spend some time doing it, Seamus always thinks Sean spends too much money… but its worth it to look so fantastic!

RM: Will we see Seantastic and Famous Seamus around Dublin during the Fringe with your mobile DJ soundsystem…pushed around in a shopping trolley?

LoS: Yes you definitely will, were are going to do a Rave somewhere in the city center on 8 Monday September…details to follow.

2FM present: Lords of Strut bring CHAOS to The Abbey Theatre’s Peacock Stage from 9-13 September as part of Tiger Dublin Fringe Festival.  Tickets range from €11-€14.

Music | Dearly Beloved to play UK and European dates

Dearly Beloved have announced a number of UK and Euro tour dates, the duo are no strangers to the UK and Europe, as they travel from their home base of Canada regularly.

Their latest album “Enduro”, available on LP worldwide via Aporia Records, was recorded in ten days at Joshua Tree’s Rancho de la Luna, overseen by Dave Catching (Eagles of Death Metal, ex-Queens of the Stone Age) with bassist Rob Higgins at the controls. The band spent another ten at Phoebe St., their own studio in Toronto, to finish tracking before the album was given a mix down in Seattle by Grammy Award-winning producer, Adam Kasper (Queens of the Stone Age, Foo Fighters, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam).

Dearly Beloved Tour Dates:

Sept 12 – Hamilton, ON @ Supercrawl

Sept 16 – Berlin, DE @ CIMA Showcase

Sept 18 – Hamburg, DE @ Reeperbahn, Canadian Blast Showcase

Sept 19 – Dusseldorf, DE @ Zack  #

Sept 22 – Stuttgart, DE @Keller Club  #

Sept 23 – Munich, DE @ Atomic Cafe  #

Sept 26 – Alizejur, PT @ Atlantic Riders Surf Camp  *

Sept 27 – Lisbon, PT @ Fontoria Blues Cafe  *

Sept 28 – Madrid, SP @ Wurlitzer Ballroom  *

Sept 30 – Grenobles, FR @ L’Amperage  *

Oct 1 – Metz, FR @ La Chauoee  *

Oct 2 – Winsford- Cheshire, UK @ tbd  *

Oct 4 – Manchester, UK @ Dry Bar  *

Oct 5 – WTFest, Southampton, UK @ Unit

Oct 7 – Bristol, UK @ Stags and Hounds  *

Oct 8 – London, UK @ The Windmill  *

Oct 9 – Glasgow, UK @ Broadcast  ^

# – with Dark Horses

* – with Eamon McGrath

^ – with Fluorescent Hearts

Music | Kerrang Tour 2015 announce headline acts

Kerrang! the UK’s biggest selling music weekly magazine have announced dates for the Kerrang Tour 2015.

Headlining the 12 date Kerrang! Tour 2015 will be Don Broco who will be joined by main support We Are In The Crowd.

Don Broco have numerous sold out UK tours under their belt including a sold out show at London’s Roundhouse, been crowned Best New Rock Act by iTunes, played the main stage at Reading & Leeds, received a prestigious Kerrang! Award nomination.

Joining Don Broco are We Are The In Crowd. The NY quintet – consisting of lead vocalist Tay Jardine, vocalist/guitarist Jordan Eckes, guitarist Cameron Hurley, bassist Mike Ferri and drummer Rob Chianelli have been on the rise since forming in 2009.

First published 33 years ago, Kerrang! Continues to celebrate the best in rock music and in January 2014 marked the anniversary of its 1500th issue.

Tickets for the Kerrang! 2015 tour go onsale Friday 29 August at 9am available at www.ticketmaster.ie.  Pre-sale tickets are available from 9am on Wednesday 27 August at www.aloud.com

Ticket price: €23.50 inclusive of booking fee

Kerrang! Tour 2015

Fri      06 Feb 15      Norwich The Nick Rayns LCR, UEA

Sat     07 Feb 15      Leeds O2 Academy

Mon    09 Feb 15      Southampton O2 Guildhall

Tue     10 Feb 15      Bristol O2 Academy

Wed   11 Feb 15     Dublin Academy                       

Fri      13 Feb 15      Cardiff Uni Great Hall

Sat     14 Feb 15      Manchester Academy 1

Sun     15 Feb 15      Newcastle O2 Academy

Mon    16 Feb 15      Glasgow O2 Academy

Wed    18 Feb 15      Liverpool O2 Academy 1

Thu     19 Feb 15      Birmingham O2 Academy 1

Fri      20 Feb 15      London Forum

Music | RobMoro guide to Electric Picnic 2014

robmoro elec picnic graphic

Click here for RobMoro Electric Picnic 2014 Stage Times

If you’re one of the lucky 40.000 people making your way to Stradbally Estate this weekend, then your sure to be in for a treat.  The usual spots such as Trenchdown, Salty Dog, Casa Bacardi, Spoken Word and much more are back.

Click on the image to enlarge the site map!

Click on the image to enlarge the site map!

Getting to Electric Picnic can be done by car, bus and train. There is free parking in the various car parks around the venue. If your going by train, then Portlaoise train station is your nearest one. There are a number of private buses to Electric Picnic, with Marathon Travel operating one from Custom House Quay in Dublin.

Unfortunately, tickets are all sold out. But you can listen into RTE 2fm and stations around the country to hear updates. This year for the first time, RTE TWO will be doing a highlights show on Saturday night.  If your an Instagram user, then you can follow the Official Electric Picnic page @EPfestival for an up to date visual experience.

Now to the stages and areas section of the festival. Casa Bacardi are back this year, with the #TryStopMe winners getting a chance to showcase their work.  Those skillful bartenders will also be mixing it up with a range of Bacardi inspired drinks.

It wouldn’t be Electric Picnic without the Salty Dog stage in the woodlands area. The shipwreck inspired stage will sail into Stradbally once again to showcase some of the finest acts around.

Jamaican themed Trenchdown area is also back this year, while also adopting a ‘One Love’ policy. A timetable of events in the Trenchdown area are available from their Facebook page.

The Global Green area also returns this year too.

Electric Picnic tech tips from Carphone Warehouse

Credit: Electric Picnic Facebook // Electric Picnic tips.

Other Voices are bringing their crew from Dingle to the festival, where Huw Stephens and Dylan Haskins will oversee presenting duties.  A few big name acts will pop by for a performance, so keep an eye out for those stage times.

Banter will take place on Saturday afternoon (4pm, Other Voices tent), Melvin Benn (Festival Republic & Organiser of both EP and R&L) and Philip King (Other Voices) join Jim Carroll to talk about the modern festival. They’ll look at the long-term history of how festivals have changed over the past decade,  the differences in festival culture between countries and the future for these events.

Vodafone Centre Stage will be there with the Vodafone Recharge Tent operating in the main arena.

The Comedy and Spoken Word areas are at Electric Picnic this year, with a cracking line up in both areas. A full breakdown of events is available here.

Body & Soul will also be at Electric Picnic, there are a few stages to the area this year, with the line up available here.  The main focus is of course the acts playing across the Main Stage and Electric Arena over the weekend too.

Festival Checklist

• Entry Ticket
• Money / Cash Card
• Clothing for all seasons
• Travel Ticket Home
• Camera (pocket sized for personal use only)
• Mobile Phone
• Sun Cream and a Hat
• Tissues and Wet Wipes
• Strong shoes/Wellies
• Any medication you need

Acts to see:

With a big line up, it’s difficult to leave anyone out of the ‘Top Acts to See’ lists, but here are a few suggestions if you’re wondering who to see this weekend.

Friday

Red Empire - Jimmie Lee’s Juke Joint

Tvvins - Main Stage

Girl Band – Body & Soul Stage

Foals – Main Stage

James Murphy (LCD Soundsytem) – Electric Arena

Pet Shop Boys - Main Stage

Saturday

Woman’s Hour - Other Voices Stage

Paolo Nutini – Main Stage

London Grammar – Electric Arena

Youth Mass - Body & Soul Stage

Booka Brass Band - Rankin’s Wood Stage

UNKNWN - Body & Soul UPSTAGE

Wonder Villains - Oxjam Stage

Sunday

St. Vincent – Electric Arena

Mogwai – Electric Arena

Wolf Alice - Cosby Stage

Jungle - Rankin’s Wood Stage

Jenny Lewis - Rankin’s Wood Stage

Glass Animals - Body & Soul Stage

Kelly-Anne Byrne – CASA BACARDÍ

Join Me In The Pines - Body & Soul UPSTAGE

Outkast - Main Stage

If you really want to enjoy your weekend, try seeing at least 15 minutes of each act.  You’re likely to see more and not miss out on the best from the biggest stages to the smallest.

For more info visit www.electricpicnic.ie

Technology | Electric Picnic tech tips from Carphone Warehouse

It is Picnic time! and here are few tips from the team at Carphone Warehouse to ensure you stay connected with friends and make the most out of the last festival of summer 2014!

  • Battery life is key to ensuring you stay connected with friends – try turning screen brightness down, close all apps that you won’t need and turn off Bluetooth and any push notifications before you set off for the weekend!
  • Portable Chargers: If using your battery is important and you don’t want the stress of worrying, Carphone Warehouse has a range of portable chargers available instore and on www.carphonewarehouse.ie. The Juice Portable Power Cube has 8 different phone connections, so you can also help out your fellow festival revellers – RRP: €29.99
  • If you own a lovely new smartphone and you want to enjoy all the festivities without worrying, Carphone Warehouse have extremely affordable pre-pay deals on offer – Samsung E1200 for €19.99 or Nokia N100 for €24.99 – this will help erase the fear of losing your shiny new smartphone!
  • Electric Picnic is vast and sometimes finding ones tent can be tricky… Download a torch app on your phone to help you find your tent when it’s dark. Carphone Warehouse favourites are iTorch Flashlight for Apple and Brightest Flashlight for Androids.
  • Lifeproof Cases: These cases will help protect your smartphone against most things life can throw at it, and at festivals they would help protect against the following… rain, mud, shock, drops, spills… the list could go on!
  • Hate missing out on the must-see gigs of the festival? Screenshot the lineup so that it is saved in images and you don’t eat up battery life or rely on network coverage down at the festival to gain access!
  • Capture the memories… They say a picture is worth a 1000 words so make sure to turn off the flash when capturing artists onstage for the must-have shot of the weekend – it can also eat up battery life and there will be plenty of photo opportunities throughout the festival weekend.
  • Last but certainly not least… those all-important baby wipes! Essential for the best festival experience!

Music | Watch: Belfast acts feature in Guinness Amplify film

Belfast music act, UNKNWN, have been selected as one of five music acts to feature in the new Guinness Amplify  billboard campaign.  The acts were chosen from the 800 bands and acts who have signed up to take part in Guinness Amplify. Shot by renowned Irish music photographer, Alan Clarke, the billboards show vivid festival shots of them performing their music.

UNKNWN is an electronic duo consisting of singer-producer, Gemma Dunleavy, and Belfast music producer, Chris Hanna.  After meeting through a mutual friend, the pair have recorded the track “I Cry” and received support from both Annie Mac and Ellie Goulding. Speaking about the shoot for the billboards,

Gemma said: ‘I loved doing the shoot, it was so cool! And Guinness Amplify is such a great campaign; I’m delighted to be a part of it.’

An online film released by Guinness Amplify focuses on the journey of the musician entitled, “The Artist’s Journey”.  The film tells the story of artists who have taken the creative plunge, facing daily obstacles and struggles in an attempt to make their dreams a reality. Northern Irish act, ‘AND SO I WATCH YOU FROM AFAR’, and London-based Irish musician, WIFE, feature.. The voiceover for the film was recorded by Irish actor, Liam Cunningham (Game of Thrones).

Rory Friar, guitarist with ‘AND SO I WATCH YOU FROM AFAR’ said; ‘‘We enjoyed being part of the filming process. The music industry is basically a joyful slog. It takes a lot of determination and effort but it is most definitely a worthwhile journey.’

Launched earlier this summer, Guinness Amplify Live will see 500 free gigs take place across 5 weeks in September and October.

Full details of the Guinness Amplify programme are available on www.guinnessamplify.com

Technology | Back to college or school? Then have a look at this tech from Sony

Having recently featured some apps from the Carphone Warehouse team that would suit students, this time RobMoro takes a look at some of the tech that Sony has  to help students get through the school year!

Sony Xperia™ Z2 Tablet (RRP* from €469) –  As seen above, the tablet is a slim, light and waterproof, neat looking tablet.  A large 6000mAh ion battery and Battery STAMINA Mode, providing up to 10 hours of usage.

HD pictures are also a feature on the tablet, with 8MP camera with Exmor RS for mobile. You can share instantly via PlayMemories app.

Tech Accessories for Busy StudentsXB400 Extra Bass Headphones (RRP* from €59) – possibly a popular choice for those who commute, as students will appreciate their dynamic detail, with flexible front and rear diaphragms working together to deliver smooth, responsive bass and a clear sound quality.

Ideal for busy students on the go, the XB400’s feature  tightly sealed, closed ear cups, so students can give full attention to their favourite music or audio books when moving about.  Just fold them away, slip into a rucksack and off you go!

Tech Accessories for Busy StudentsSony w274s Waterproof Walkman (€59) - For students who are lapping the pool or biking the trails, the W Series Sports Walkman delivers beats on the move!

Waterproof MP3 player for the athletic student on the go!

This high-performance music player is wire-free, extremely lightweight and waterproof. Three minutes of charge gives 60 minutes of playback, so it’s perfect for the student who loves running, swimming or walking between study time.

Tech Accessories for Busy StudentsSony HX60 / HX60V Compact Camera with 30x Optical Zoom (RRP* from €389)– For the photography student or the just the snap happy ones. It’s also ideal for proud parents who want to capture those special ‘first day’ moments of loved ones starting their studies!

Features include 30x optical zoom, a 20.4MP Exmor™ R CMOS sensor, and image stabilisation – for smooth, precise detail, students will never miss the perfect picture again, whether the scene is up close or far away.