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Rory Gallagher – ‘Blues’ (Chess)

In the history of Irish music, there are a handful of people whose names, years, decades and even centuries after their passing, are still uttered in hushed reverence. From Dr James McDonnell to Count John McCormick, Josef Locke to Derek Bell, their names, and their legacies, continue to echo down through the ages. In the field of rock ‘n’ roll, of course, we have the likes of the incomparable Phil Lynott and Belfast’s own prodigal son, Gary Moore. But, head and shoulders above them all stands the man still regarded as the greatest interpreter of the blues of his generation, and perhaps the greatest non-American to pick up a battered Stratocaster and make the genre his own. We are talking, of course, about The G Man, the legend that is the Cork-born genius Mr Rory Gallagher…

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Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses Northern Ireland Final – Belfast, Voodoo – 17 May 2019

In what proved to be the most tightly contested battle in the history of the competition, it was a case of third time lucky for Belfast-based groove crüe Lock Horns as they stormed to an extremely well-deserved victory in this year’s Northern Ireland leg of the annual Metal 2 The Masses competition to win a coveted spot at this year’s Bloodstock Open Air festival. Not that they had an easy ride, both in terms of their own performances and the sheer quality of the opposition which they faced, both throughout the competition and on this spectacular night of heavy metal beatdowns par excellence.

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Tesla – ‘Shock’ (UMC)

ÜR boss Monk first came across Tesla back in early 1987. he was about 18 months into his journalism career and writing the only rock column being published on a regular basis by any Northern Ireland newspaper. A copy of an album called ‘Mechanical Resonance’ by an unknown band from Sacramento plopped onto his desk. Monk was immediately drawn to it – and to say it blew him away would be the understatement of the millennium!  He reckons he has burned out three copies of the album, and still rates it as one of the best pure hard rock albums ever, never mind one of the classic debuts of all time. Now, here we are a little more than three decades later and Tesla are about to drop their eighth studio album...

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The Über Rockin’ Guide to… Download Festival 2019 (Part Two)

It’s that time of year again, where we bust out the wellies and sun-cream (just in case!) and prepare to descend on Castle Donington for a weekend of musical greatness. Download 2019 looks set to not only feature performances by some of our world’s biggest and best names, but also give a much-needed bump to some of the emergent stars of the future. With that in mind, here is the second instalment of our three-part Über Rockin’ Guide to Download Festival 2019, starting by looking at what is going down across the various stages on the Saturday (15 June)...

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The Über Rockin’ Guide to… Download Festival 2019 (Part Two)

It’s that time of year again, where we bust out the wellies and sun-cream (just in case!) and prepare to descend on Castle Donington for a weekend of musical greatness. Download 2019 looks set to not only feature performances by some of our world’s biggest and best names, but also give a much-needed bump to some of the emergent stars of the future. With that in mind, here is the second instalment of our three-part Über Rockin’ Guide to Download Festival 2019, starting by looking at what is going down across the various stages on the Saturday (15 June)...