New Releases of the Week (24 September 2021)

The album artwork for Elephant’s latest album ‘Ice Cream’, out on Pizza Pizza Records.

New Releases of the Week (24 September 2021)

A round-up of recent releases including Dave Flynn, Xenia Pestova Bennett and Ed Bennett, Elephant, Tolü Makay, and Aoife Doyle. To submit your music for inclusion, please email [email protected].

Dave Flynn – Irish Minimalism
Irish Minimalism is the new album by composer Dave Flynn, released on First Hand Records. Featuring four works for string quartet with the addition of uilleann pipes and pipes and voice on two, the pieces were composed between 2004 and 2020. String Quartet No. 2 (‘The Cranning’) may be the best known and has often been programmed by ConTempo Quartet. A number of the compositions were previously released on Flynn’s 2019 album Stories from the Old World, but with the addition here of String Quintet No. 1 (‘The Cutting’). The works feature a fascinating combination of traditional Irish music techniques and inflections combined with a contemporary compositional craft. Irish Minimalism features Mick O’Brien (uilleann pipes), Breanndán Begley (voice), ConTempo Quartet, and the Irish Memory Orchestra Quartet (Aoife Ní Bhriain, Niamh-Varian-Barry, Ciara Ní Bhriain and Cormac Ó Broin).

Irish Minimalism is available to purchase now on Bandcamp:

Xenia Pestova Bennett and Ed Bennett – Goldberg Variations: Aria / Aria Electronica 
Just released on the Ergodos label are two tracks from an upcoming album by pianist Xenia Pestova Bennett and composer/electronics performer Ed Bennett. Gold​.​Berg​.​Werk is a reimagining of Bach’s Goldberg Variations by Austrian composer Karlheinz Essl that was performed at Music for Galway’s Midwinter festival in January of this year. Commenting on the project, Pestova Bennett said: ‘The very idea of tackling the Goldberg Variations places an enormous psychological “weight” of tradition on any keyboard player brave or foolish enough to do so. However, rather than presenting this work as a fixed artefact behind dusty museum glass, or trying to match existing interpretations, I find that it helps to view it as a living and evolving organism. Karlheinz Essl’s Gold.Berg.Werk (“gold mine work”), a new piece in its own right, takes Bach’s music as a point of departure and offers a fresh perspective.’ Listen to the tracks and pre-order the album on Bandcamp:

Elephant – Ice Cream
Ice Cream is the third album from Dundalk-based musician Shane Clarke’s lo-fi indie project Elephant, released this month on Pizza Pizza Records. The record includes singles ‘Envy’, ‘Nova Scotia’ and title track ‘Ice Cream’, and follows the release of previous albums HyperGiant (2015) and 88 (2018). Ice Cream features guest musicians Chris W. Ryan (drums) and Nathan Rogers and Ryan Burrowes on bass. Clarke produced the album with producer and artist manager at Pizza Pizza Records, Joseph Edwards. Ice Cream comprises a blend of ambient and boppy, synth-infused tracks and is available to purchase on vinyl and digital now:

Tolü Makay – Behavin Like a Lil B**
‘Behavin Like a Lil B**’ is the latest track from pop singer Tolü Makay, whose previous releases include ‘Aye’, ‘Used to Be’, and her cover of the Saw Doctors’ ‘N17’. ‘“Behavin Like a Lil B**”, Makay says, ’is a song with attitude. It’s the song you need when you just have to call someone out. I also make reference to men who hit on women and can’t take no as an answer.’ The punchy track with a bridge that Makay raps will feature on her upcoming album, due for release early next year. Visit:

Aoife Doyle – Strength to be Strong 
Clare-based singer-songwriter Aoife Doyle has recently released ‘Strength to be Strong’, which will feature on her upcoming album, the details of which are yet to be released. The blues and soul-infused track is about finding strength during ongoing adversity and, says Doyle, ‘to release this song as the first single off the album felt like an appropriate choice, given the world events of the last 18 months’. ‘Strength to be Strong’ is produced by jazz saxophonist Michael Buckley and features a range of artists including pianist Johnny Taylor, guitarist and singer Jack Maher, trumpet player Ronan Dooney, vocalist Margot Daly, bassist Andrew Csibi and drummer Dominic Mullan. Known as a jazz singer, Doyle writes: ‘When it came to writing this album, I was trying to push myself creatively… The writing itself is quite instinctive, so there wasn’t an overall plan to step away from jazz, it just sort of came out that way. My first two albums have elements of folk, soul and blues so I guess a step further in that direction isn’t all that surprising.’ Purchase the  track on Bandcamp:

To submit your music for inclusion, visit:

Published on 24 September 2021

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