Headlining Dolans Warehouse has been long in the offing for Limerick’s whenyoung, ever since the trio of Aoife Power, Niall Woods and Andrew Flood headed off to the dizzy lights of London and started making music together. We documented the evolution of the band in our Plec Picks interview earlier this year and they have certainly more than delivered on the ambitious determination they expressed when we last spoke to them. Since then they have released their debut album ‘Reasons to Dream’ to critical acclaim and built on their already impressive live CV with a major UK tour, along with dates around Europe including Lollapalooza Berlin.
Supporting them on their Irish tour is another Limerick talent, Sinead O’Brien who has also been developing her craft overseas. O’Brien has released a string of wonderfully esoteric singles in the last few months. Her material makes for an intriguing live proposition with her unerringly spoken word delivery backed by a stark guitar & drum combo. Limbo & A Thing Called Joy work well however one can’t help feeling that in the main her set would benefit from additional atmospherics to fulfil the intricacies of her studio output. It’ll be interesting to chart her development as a live performer in the coming year.
For this headline tour whenyoung have morphed into a foursome with the addition of a touring bass player, its a move that makes complete sense as it frees up Power to prowl the stage and engage in playful banter with the audience. She certainly delights in her freedom and its clear from the outset that the local trio are revelling in being back in their hometown and finally playing the main room of Dolans, which is a complete sell-out.
Pretty Pure and Heaven on Earth get proceedings off to a pacy power-pop start before things really take off with the double whammy of Blank Walls and recent single A Labour of Love. The latter is one of the real highlights of the night with the band taking the track to even greater heights than the studio version.
Their set sparkles all the way through as we are treated to almost entirety of their debut LP. As ever The Others packs an emotional punch while Given Up sends the crowd into ecstatics. Returning for their encore with the stripped back, almost acapella version of Sleeper from their debut EP, its achingly beautiful and sets us up perfectly for Never Let Go a joyful revelry for both band and the hugely impressed gathering, a more than apt way to close the evening and marks a triumphant return home for these locals heroes.
Photo Credit : Richard Dowling