Tommy Tiernan, Abandoman and Spencer Jones shine at Kilkenny Cat Laughs

She talks about gin being “liquidised paranoia” before discussing how wine is aggressively marketed at women: “Just look at the wine glass. Tiernan begins in low key mode, whispering as he slowly shuffles on stage. The hair and outfits might be spectacular, and one track about not getting invited to a Chem Sex party hits the mark. What’s in Your Pocket sets the tone – people in the audience hold up the odd things they are carrying and Broderick tears around the rooming, grabbing, looking and riffing on the spot. Indigestion tables lead to the gem that is: “This lady is the Gaviscon dealer / Tomorrow when you’re feeling rough, she’s your tummy Jesus.” Later that night, a smaller, sparser room proves a trickier proposition for David O’Doherty, Phill Jupitus and Fern Brady, with Joanne McNally doing a terrific job as MC. They also manage to make Spoiling Ivan, a song about being friends and a father figure for a six-year-old, into a poignant, bouncy moment amid the madness of Cat Laughs. It makes for a sparkling, friendly atmosphere at a festival that is already spilling over with good humour. “There is no peace in this life” he intones more than once, during material that plumbs some dark depths before pitching up into the ridiculousness of Ireland today. And another of O’Briain hitting a sliotar on Lord’s cricket ground and cracking a photographer on the head. Another man in the front row who looks like George Lucas (Star Wars inevitably comes up) also proves irresistible for most of the performers. The songs are as charming as ever, including his track about celebrities doing dull things that rhyme with their names. O’Doherty find gold in the mundane, hilarity in the everyday. Sport does come up in places, and it’s an enjoyable afternoon detour for the festival. But overall the writing feels stretched too thinly across the set. Throughout the set he scurries around the stage, sniggering at his own jokes and barely uttering a sentence, before looking around bewildered, saying “I’dm 41”, and bringing the house down. Phill Jupitus, though, has an off night. Irishman Broderick performs comedy hip hop tracks that are largely improvised from what the audience tell or give him. Despite being on at the relatively early time of 6pm on Friday, a show featuring Kevin Bridges, Abandoman and Jason Byrne with MC Eric Lalor turns out to …

Five films to catch in June that aren’t Wonder Woman

Twice Shy is perfectly balanced film about being young and in love. Then there is Bong Joon Ho’s terrific Okja. Don’t fret. Did I say that? Anyway, it’s on the service from June 28th. We didn’t know anything about the director. There are odder pictures about. Who doesn’t want to see that? But it was a film then. We hadn’t read the reviews. It’s about the cats of Istanbul. The gifted Teresa Palmer stars as an inconvenienced tourist in Cate Shortland’s gripping Berlin Syndrome (June 9th). The film concerns an abortion, but, like Gillian Robespierre’s Obvious Child, that procedure is very much in the middle distance. The unstoppable Nick Broomfield is surely the man to dig through the data, track down the survivors and allow us to draw our own conclusions. It’s great to see Tom Ryan’s lovely, low-key comedy finding space between the Transformers and the Spider-Men. CARDBOARD GANGSTERS June 16th Respect to Mark O’Connor. But this was the documentary about the cats of Istanbul. So we shouldn’t even be mentioning it here. (His barmy Stalker is a trip, man.) Cardboard Gangsters, a hit at last year’s Galway Film Fleadh, stars John Connors, an O’Connor regular, as a low-level hood getting by in Darndale. Then there is the new Transformers film. We will get the first of two Winston Churchill biopics – Gary Oldman stars in Darkest Hour later in the year – when Brian Cox appears in the unimaginatively titled Churchill (June 16th ). TWICE SHY June 23rd Another domestic triumph. Just go. We reviewed the ecological curiosity in Cannes. Good parent work from Ardal O’Hanlon and Pat Shortt. These are the months when, traditionally, the big blockbusters scare quality cinema into the shadows. True enough, the big, big movies are about. The message is optimistic. The news that Diane Keaton and Brendan Gleeson are appearing together in a romcom is surely reason enough to attend Hampstead (June 23rd). The Mummy, Universal’s latest attempt to raise their classic monsters from the grave, arrives on June 9th and we shall approach it with an open mind. The jokes are elegantly worked out. MY LIFE AS A COURGETTE June 2nd If you go to one animation about excluded French kids this month then make it Claude Barras’s gorgeous, touching (and very brief) Oscar-nominated triumph. Isn’t it? Can’t wait. The director of Kurt & Courtney and Battle for Haditha remains one …

Dublin Boyz n the Hood and gruesome gangland consequence

With few other options, Jay and his buddies transition from small-time drug deals to selling heroin, a business plan that soon attracts the attention of smack dealer and neighbourhood terror Derra Murphy (Jimmy Smallhorne). Ours is a ’hood film, not a gangster film. Donald Clarke’s movie quiz: do you know your imaginary friends? Just… no.”  The director behind Between the Canals and King of the Travellers is such a quiet, unassuming fellow it’s easy to forget that he’s one of this country’s most formidable film talents. “Maybe it’s because I’ve spent time away from here – I lived in New York for three years, and I lived in London after that – maybe you have to step away to love that romanticised version of Irishness.” Cardboard Gangsters opens on June 16th I wasn’t sure that something so local would travel or work with international audiences. Think of Tommy in Goodfellas. Cardboard Gangsters may contain scenes of exuberance and death-defying sessions, but it slots neatly into the ’hood subgenre: picture a localised marriage of La Haine and Boyz N’ The Hood. “I couldn’t believe it. In 2014, Stalker, the director’s sophomore feature (made for a minuscule €15,000), became the first crowdfunded Irish feature to receive a theatrical release. Because that’s what these guys do.” Share a house To this end the production required the lads at the centre of the drama to share a house for several weeks before the shoot. “I can’t watch my own films,” says Mark O’Connor. “Every film needs flamour. I mean it has to have something – doesn’t matter if it’s a horror or a superhero film or any other genre – that catches your eye and pulls you in. While the film-maker has moved on from that idea, he remains faithful to the communities he depicts on film. “They always start out like social realism. It’s in Shane MacGowan. Some of best moments in cinema are simply about being in the moment. With some the previous films I was almost too focused on the community. But he’s still dangerous Connors, who played the bomb-maker who took down drug lord Nidge in the hit TV show Love/Hate, anchors the new film with a remarkably modulated performance that flips between softness and steel. “I think when you’re making a social-realist film set in a deprived community like this one is, it can just become really depressing and …

New Irish Music: Saint Sister, Rusangano Family, Rushes and more

Their latest song addresses the transition from an old love to a new through references to Van Morrison and the Blessington basin. Lyrically, McMorrow is at his most vulnerable, referencing nights spent listening to The National, drinking by himself, spilling wine on someone else’s carpet and sharing his nightmares involving airplanes. McMorrow’s journey from folk-style musician to 21st century balladeer has entered a new phase. McKenna took to it like a pro with this clip, in which the protagonist prefers drug-fuelled hedonistic nights out to facing his own problems.      Rocstrong  – Vibes  Andre Bangala’s releasing a new song every month to try out some new styles at the moment.   VIDEO OF THE WEEK aboveDat – Better Directed by Lochlainn McKenna Newcomer McKenna got to work on the video for this under-rated tune from the Cork electronic and house project abovedat through the First Cut Youth Film Festival music video comp run by Brendan Canty and David Leister. Vocally, he adds a conversationalist tone on some songs to his established falsetto, while musically, his compositions are increasingly hard to categorise, but are in the realms of electronic soul with sharp and soft-edged synth notes, rousing self-sung harmonic choruses and spatial arrangements. It’ll be launched with a special event in D-Light Studios in Dublin on June 14th with spoken word performances from MuRli and God Knows, a DJ set from mynameisjOhn and a talk by Blindboy Boatclub on mental health in Ireland. The song is about opening up and talking about your feelings and issues. “We dance to Elvis in the kitchen, at least we used to, and honey you know me, we danced from Belfast to the basin, when you sang “it stoned me”, and it stoned me.”   Rusangano Family – I Know You Know The Choice Music Prize-winning trio follow up last year’s Let The Dead Bury The Dead with a new song they’ve been playing live of late. Email iknowyouknowevent@gmail.com for entry. Wild High is his debut track, an R&B electronic song with a distinct pop edge, informed by Walsh’s love of N.E.R.D, D’Angelo, Frank Ocean and Marvin Gaye.    NEW ARTIST OF THE WEEK Rushes The latest artist from Diffusion Lab, the Irish production crew who brought us Soulé and Jafaris, is Sean Walsh’s Rushes project. True Care is McMorrow at his most direct. SONGS OF THE WEEK Saint Sister – Causing Trouble Morgan …

Clucking good poem for kids wins Caterpillar Poetry Prize

It’s interesting to see some familiar names among them, but it’s also incredibly exciting to meet new writers we haven’t come across before.” Hegley commended poems by Conrad Burdekin, Richard Evans, Matt Goodfellow, Louise Greig, Lyn Halliday, Mercedes Hessleroth, Eileen Keane, Jemima Laing, John Morris, Heather F Reid, Shauna Darling Robertson and Gabe Rothschild. “It delights us beyond words to be able to bring some of the wonderful poems being written into the light. Feathers then grew on her tum and spread behind her to her bum. Auntie Aggie’s nose grew beaky and her feet grew clawed and freaky. Both her legs grew short and thin and feathers grew upon her chin. The calibre of the poems entered into this year’s competition was terrific. The winner of this year’s Caterpillar Poetry Prize, run by the Caterpillar – an art and literature magazine for children established by the same couple that runs the Moth magazine – is Auntie Aggie by Janet Turner. Although she wasn’t getting thinner she started eating eggs for dinner. You can sense the twinkle in the author’s eye as she wrote it.” Janet Turner: receives €1,000 prize money Turner lives with her husband, Clive, in Brockenhurst in the New Forest in England. AUNTIE AGGIE by Janet Turner Auntie Aggie liked an eggie for her breakfast every day. She was a secretary in the aircraft industry, then taught shorthand and typing, and spinning and weaving. Soon these happy, healthy hens were laying eggs by nines and tens and Auntie Aggie began to munch even more eggs for her lunch. See thecaterpillarmagazine.com for further details. “The opening is very strong and in-drawing. Auntie Aggie bought ten chickens, fed them well so they would lay. Auntie Aggie gave a wail when she found she’d grown a tail. Soon, avoiding bathroom showers, enjoying dust baths among the flowers, she scratched and clucked, ate worms and ants and never, ever, wore her pants. Chris Preece, the winner of last year’s prize, is currently residing there. Then, and this surely wasn’t right, she drank an eggnog every night. So much so that John commended some 12 poems. “There were many happinesses in the poetry I read,” he said, but Auntie Aggie won out in the end. The story flies straight and trusted and there are many incidents of delight – and ‘bum’ and ‘pants’ seemed necessary, not merely decorative,” said Hegley. It is …

Oidhreacht JFK

Chuaigh dínn é sin a shlogadh go hiomlán ar an toirt. Déarfá gur maith ann é Peace Corps ag na Stáit, óir bhí Corps Cogaidh acu go rómhinic ar an leith eile. Cuid den idéalachas sin ba ea bunú an Peace Corps, arb é a bhí i gceist leis go rachadh Meiriceánaigh óga amach go tíortha ‘an tríú domhain’ go deonach d’fhonn obair a dhéanamh agus ar bheagán airgid. Is fíor, gan amhras, go raibh cuid de na fir ag iarraidh éalú ón gcoinscríobh míleata a bhí i bhfeidhm de dheasca ionradh na Stát ar Vítneam san am, ach níor fhág sin nach raibh an ceart ar fad acu. Bíodh a theist sin ar an mosáic a bhíodh san ardeaglais i nGaillimh, fág go gcreidim nach ann dó níos mó. Ní raibh teora leis an gcineál oibre a dhéanfadh siad agus bhí go leor di praicticiúil agus toradh láithreach air. Thabharfaí ‘scéal á bhriseadh’ air sin inniu, ach ós rud é go mbíonn scéalta ‘á mbriseadh’ le linn gach dara clár faoi láthair ní bhíonn an éifeacht chéanna leo. Gach oidhreacht mar é, bíonn breicnithe spotaitheach idir eatarthu. Kennedy. Ba gheall é le taithí glúine níos déanaí a bhfuil fhios go deimhin acu cad a bhí ar siúl acu nuair a nocht uafás 9/11. D’imigh sin, agus tháinig seo, mar adeir siad; chuaigh daoine an t-áth agus eisean an mí-ádh. Tá glúin áirithe daoine sa tír seo agus ar fud an domhain a bhfuil cuimhne ghléineach acu ar cá raibh siad nuair a lámhachadh John F. Munar dhein an Cinnéideach ach an méid sin féin, déarfá gur fhág sé oidhreacht amháin luachmhar ina dhiaidh. Ach rinne maitheas, leis, agus maitheas ba ea é a bhí fáiscthe as idéalachas áirithe a bhí ann riamh, agus nárbh idéalachas don fhuinneoig amháin ar fad a bhí ann. Chonaic mé go leor díobh ag obair i dtíortha éagsúla in iarthar na hAfraice, agus ní fhéadfaí a rá go raibh aon rún folaigh polaitiúil ná spiaireachta acu mar a cuireadh ina leith go rialta. Ní dóigh liom go dtuigtear inniu chomh mór is a bhí an tír faoi dhraíocht ag JFK, cé go bhfuil Ryan Tubridy ar a dhícheall é sin a mheabhrú dúinn. Fairis sin, deirtí nach bhféadfaí dul isteach i dteach in áiteanna faoin tír nach raibh pictiúir den Chroí Ró-Naofa agus JFK le hais a chéile os cionn an mhatail. Níor bheag …

Unflinching ‘Cardboard Gangsters’ hits the target

But he’s still dangerous Connors, who played the bomb-maker who took down drug lord Nidge in the hit TV show Love/Hate, anchors the new film with a remarkably modulated performance that flips between softness and steel. There still are not that many [actors] who are from a working-class background and who can be realistic “When you’re not from the place you have to be careful about how you are representing that community. With few other options, Jay and his buddies transition from small-time drug deals to selling heroin, a business plan that soon attracts the attention of smack dealer and neighbourhood terror Derra Murphy (Jimmy Smallhorne). Cardboard Gangsters may contain scenes of exuberance and death-defying sessions, but it slots neatly into the ’hood subgenre: picture a localised marriage of La Haine and Boyz N’ The Hood. While the film-maker has moved on from that idea, he remains faithful to the communities he depicts on film. Think of Tommy in Goodfellas. “Boyz N The Hood, Menace to Society, Paid in Full. More than 90 per cent of the cast of King of the Travellers came from the Travelling community. With some the previous films I was almost too focused on the community. Film doesn’t have to be bang, bang, this happens, then this happens next. I mean it has to have something – doesn’t matter if it’s a horror or a superhero film or any other genre – that catches your eye and pulls you in. “Every film needs flamour. So it’s about finding a balance.” Following on from Stalker and King of the Travellers, Cardboard Gangsters marks O’Connor’s third collaboration with the talented writer, documentarian and star John Connors. You have to show the lads having great craic and the fun. “I’m trying to find an Irish voice. I don’t mean pretty people and nice things. “I like when Di Caprio is crawling down the stairs in Wolf of Wall Street. Cardboard Gangsters (which might just as easily be called Straight Outta Darndale) is possibly an easier sell. I wanted to cast all non-actors. “I call it flamour: glamour in film,” laughs the director. Think of Tommy in Goodfellas.     “We wanted him to have that coldness as well as emotional depths,” says O’Connor. As much as I love plot-driven films, I find you never rewatch them. You can see that instinct powering along King of the Travellers and Cardboard …

Cruinnithe poiblí le cás na teanga a phlé

agus 4 p.m. Beidh cruinniú ag Conradh na Gaeilge in Óstán Wynns, Sráid na Mainistreach Íochtar, BÁC 1, Dé Sathairn, 10ú Meitheamh, idir 11 a.m. a bheidh an ócáid. Tá an coiste ag iarraidh go ndéanfar “machnamh neamhachrannach, fuarchúiseach agus straitéiseach ar staid reatha na Gaeilge agus cur chuige lucht na Gaeilge ina leith, féachaint an féidir linn moltaí nua fiúntacha a chur le chéile…” Ag caint, beidh Conchúr Ó Giollagáin, Julian de Spáinn, Aoife Ní Shéaghdha, Breandán Mac Cormaic, Ben Ó Ceallaigh, Muireann Ní Mhóráin agus Seán Tadhg Ó Gairbhí. Is in Óstán Buswells, Sráid Molesworth, Baile Átha Cliath 2, Dé Sathairn 17ú Meitheamh, idir 10 a.m. Aontófar gníomhartha a bhaineann go sonrach le feachtais ar leith … Beidh dhá chruinniú phoiblí san ardchathair go luath le ceist na Gaeilge a phlé. “An Comhrá Mór: Ollchruinniú Gnímh” is ainm don lá agus é mar chuspóir ag an chonradh tús a chur le comhrá mór le muintir na hÉireann i dtaobh na Gaeilge. go háirithe gníomhartha maidir le reachtaíocht…” (Eolas: www.cnag.ie) “Cá bhfuil ár dtriall?” an t-ainm a bheas ar chruinniú eile atá á eagrú ag an choiste, Teacht Aniar. (Eolas: www.teachtaniar.eu) Fóram a bheas ann “le smaointe agus le tuairimí a spreagadh agus a bhailiú, ach is cruinniú le dul i mbun gnímh é seo. agus 1.30 p.m.

Ag cuimhneamh ar an ardteist

Ach an teist den ord ard a bhíonn ar siúl? Ach ardaíonn sé ceisteanna níos bunúsaí fós faoi conas inchinn an duine a choimeád grinn agus glinn agus ag obair go héifeachtach san fhoghlaim fadsaoil. Is léachtóir ar Choláiste Mhuire gan Smál, Luimneach, é an Dochtúir Cathal de Paor Dé Céadaoin a thosóidh na mílte daltaí ar fud na tíre ar an Ardteist. Tá an chruthaitheacht (seachas an mheastóireacht) curtha ar barr sa leagan nua a tháinig amach i 2005. Is cóngaraí an scrúdú mar sin, le riachtanais an tsaoil lasmuigh – agus an t-idirlíon chomh lárnach sin sa láthair oibre, sa teaghlach, sa phobal, agus sa saol trí chéile. Is féidir a rá go cinnte nach bhfuil an seanrá a shamhlaímid le Muiris Ó Súilleabháin ó na Blascaodaí chomh cruinn agus a bhíodh – 20 bliain ag fás, 20 bliain faoi bhláth, 20 bliain ag meath agus 20 bliain ag trá – nó 20 bliain gur cuma ann nó as. Ní réasún é seo, gan amhras, chun béim bhreise a chur ar scileanna cuimhne san ardteist. Agus go mbeidh cuimhne acu ar laethanta seo na hóige go fada an lá – agus gur cuimhní cinn dearfacha agus pléisiúrtha níos mo ná a mhalairt a bheidh acu. Is iarracht bhreise í chun aitheantas (agus marcanna) a thabhairt do chumas na ndaltaí sna scileanna den ord ard – seachas tarraingt go meicniúil ar eolas atá curtha de ghlan mheabhair, ar bheagán tuisceana b’fhéidir. Is cinnte go mbeimis i bpunc ceart dá gcuirfí as feidhm é – trí thimpiste nó d’aon ghnó le víreas, géarchéim cumhachta, agus araile. Ach ní gá fáil réidh leis an halla scrúdaithe ná an clog go hiomlán. Sa Danmhairg, cuir i gcás, ó 2008 i leith, bíonn an t-idirlíon ar fáil ag na daltaí i mbun scrúdaithe ag deireadh na meánscolaíochta. Anailís, sintéis, meastóireacht – b’shin na scileanna smaoinimh a chuir Benjamin Bloom agus a chomhleacaithe ar barr a liosta (tacsanamaí) iomráitigh don fhoghlaim choigneolaíoch i 1956. Cuireann sé seo i gcuimhne dúinn an tslí ina bhfuil ról na cuimhne daonna ag eascairt i saol an 21ú haois. Ina theannta sin, le roinnt blianta anuas, bíonn níos mó den toradh iomlán ag brath ar obair an dalta roimh lá an scrúdaithe, tionscnaimh mar shampla, nó scrúduithe cainte. Bíonn gá le scileanna de shórt eile ag an dalta chun toradh fónta agus rathúil a bhaint amach ina leithéid …

‘Kill All Normies’: the alt-right’s new turn

Even if you took everything that they were saying as true it was still this absolutely outrageous and absurd overreaction.” It became a key battle in an online culture war (later battles included the racist and misogynistic targeting of the all-female cast of the 2016 Ghostbusters film). “I have no idea what someone like Milo really believes,” says Nagle. “The guys said [some of the creators] were sleeping with the reviewers and that’s why their games were getting good reviews. And she argues that “the relationship [between the online left and right] is symbiotic in some ways.” However, she stresses that she doesn’t think that there’s any moral equivalence. Transgressive tactics Nagle’s initial interest in these groups, she says, was piqued by their style of engagement, which utilised the sort of irony-filled transgressive tactics formerly associated with left-wing counterculture. The appeal of Trump to the online trolls made total sense. “I wanted to say, ‘Yeah but it’s not for you – it’s for other people to look at your weirdness.’” She thinks that dwelling on these subjects isn’t necessarily good for her, “but it hasn’t really damaged my faith in humanity, because [these people are] not representative. She had to rewrite parts of her book after Yiannopoulos’s downfall (a recording was uncovered in which he praised pederasty). “Their view was basically that ‘irrational female brains’ were like systems they could hack. They thrived on anonymity and they targeted those who dared to be sincere or, indeed, female. Her book also covers a more-liberal-than-thou culture of public shaming found among some smug and complacent elements of the online left (she writes about vicious squabbles that ensued after the late Mark Fisher’s essay on the subject, Exiting the Vampire Castle). “They were totally morally degenerate… but they were nihilistic about it. Ultimately these online right-wing movements are a destructive perversion of identity politics coming from young men who feel disappointed with their lives. They often did horrible things. She’s talking about the army of Pepe-the-Frog-avatared trolls who often bombard female writers with offensive messages and threats. Nagle is the author of an excellent new book Kill All Normies: The Online Culture Wars from Tumblr and 4chan to the Alt-Right and Trump. It was, says Nagle, “the crucible of their movement.” Alt-light It made the reputations of several people who later became figureheads, most notably the now-disgraced former Breitbart writer Milo Yiannopoulos. She …