Limerick band Leading Armies will launch their debut LP called ‘Let’s Get Serious’ with a live show this weekend. They will be joined on stage by The Markevin Light Orchestra recreating the 17-strong ensemble that rocked Dolan’s Warehouse at their last gig during the Summer, promising an even bigger show featuring more musicians, brighter ideas and their long-play debut release which will be available for free.
It has been an eventful couple of years for the six-piece who formed on Christmas Day 2011 in singer Glen Scully’s house after getting together for a party. The promises made together at that impromptu music session were not forgotten and Dave Hinchy (guitar), Mike Hogan (guitar), Cein Daly (bass), Conor Ryan (keys) and Noel Mooney (drums) have bonded into a tight musical unit. The band played anywhere that would have them and attendances improved for every show.
With influences as diverse as Fleet Foxes and ELO, it is hard to pin down their sound but with a strong stage presence, fine musicianship and a party atmosphere at the shows, the Leading Armies ability to command large audiences is not in doubt. Guitarist Dave Hinchy feels the band has benefited from their large circle of friends that come out to support at gigs. “We enjoy playing so much and that translates to the crowd and we encourage constructive feedback so we can progress as a band. We have loads of friends and that is half the crowd that turn up. People are on our side and everyone has been so helpful to us since we started.”
Leading Armies were winners of band competition Indie Week 2012 in Dublin, their first performance outside Limerick. Part of the prize for that win was flights to headline the Canadian leg of the festival last October. “Going to Canada was a real kick up the arse for the band, it made us realise that we could achieve something with Leading Armies. The feedback we got over there was exceptional. It gave us the motivation to try and make it and that is what we have been trying to do,” says Dave.
Leading Armies recorded a track in Revolution Recording Studios in Toronto by producer Rob DeVito which appears on the new release. The band has not stopped working since returning home. They recorded in Bishop’s Palace Studio’s Limerick produced by Owen Lewis; in Temple Lane Studios, Dublin and filmed two tracks played live with no overdubs at Daghda Space, former Church of St John of the Cross. Tracks from these sessions will be available on the new LP, ‘Let’s Get Serious’.
The recent performances in John’s Square were accompanied by The Markevin Light Orchestra and are now on YouTube. The two tracks show how much Leading Armies has progressed as a band. Backed by ten musicians on strings, percussion, brass and backing vocals, Dave says, “Those performances have been the best fun and the best musical experience all of us have had so far. It was fantastic getting to work with all those musicians, most of them from Limerick.”
The short films are a wonderful snapshot of a band in progression and the high quality of Limerick creativity in capturing these moments. The videos were directed and edited by Shane Serrano, sound recording by Dave O’Brien, helped by large video and audio crews.
‘Lets Get Serious’ is the new LP featuring six tracks that capture the band’s finest moments in the last 12 months. The release will be available for free as a download only on Bandcamp.com. Details of how to get your copy will become clear at the gig in Dolan’s.
Leading Armies decided against a release on CD as, “we did not want to charge our fans to listen to our music. In this day and age I don’t think we should have to pay for music, music is creative, a song can change your entire life, we feel we should be able to give that away for free for as long as we can,” Dave concludes.
Leading Armies launch their new LP ‘Let’s Get Serious’ this Friday October 11 in Dolan’s. The Markevin Light Orchestra will join them on stage and support comes from She’s a Beauty and Emma Langford.