Following on from their recent singles ‘Talk to Joe’ and ‘Please Don’t Start the Fun’, Ispíní na hÉireann share their debut album ‘The Hard Working Men’ out now, Friday 28th October 2022.
During a trip to Slovakia in 2017, banjo player Adam J. Holohan and guitar player Tomás Mulligan discovered how much they enjoyed playing with each other, shortly after they decided to form a band. One day, while sitting at the bar of the famous Cobblestone Pub in Smithfield Square Dublin, drinking the strongest accidentally created ale the Four Provinces Brewery had to offer, they decided upon a name; ‘Ispíní na hÉireann’, and thus the ‘Sausages of Ireland’ were born.
“We are Ispíní na hÉireann, the Hardest Working Band in all of the Land. For those who don’t know yet, that means The Sausages of Ireland, and we’re called so because we are the slippiest, greasiest dogs going.”
One of their theories of music they decided to expand and experiment on, was that people respond to repetition. The self-proclaimed “World’s Hardest Working Band” hypothesised that people unfamiliar with Irish music couldn’t actually tell the difference between any of the tunes that musicians were playing, and likely wouldn’t be aware if the same tune was repeated several times in a session. Rather, they believed that the repetition would lead to subconscious conditioning, leading the people to enjoy the session more as it went on, as, unbeknownst to them, they had become familiar with the tune. After agreeing upon a reel called The Silver Spear, the experiment was underway. The research peaked on St Patrick’s Day 2019 in Molly Malone’s Bar in Temple Bar, when the Silver Spear was played in excess of 20 times in a 3 hour session to a rousing response. Legend has it that the Silver Spear passed 30 plays that day, but as of yet, no concrete evidence has been put forward to support this claim.
Since then, the repertoire of Ispíní na hÉireann has evolved substantially. Nonetheless, in paying homage to their roots, this album both opens and closes with versions of this great reel.
In July 2019, while on tour in Lithuania, Ispíní na hÉireann would expand its ranks when they became acquainted with talented cellist Aongus Mac Amhlaigh, who they quickly adopted into the band due to his amazing ability to make their music somewhat credible. It was on this trip that the Ispíní came across Sergeant James McCafferty, thus securing them their first man on the inside of An Garda Síochána. Sergeant James would lend his talents to this album, throwing down saxophone, cornet, organ and clarinet on several tracks.
With some semblance of a sound coming together the eager pair would seek the guidance of a top performing producer to capture their sound. Band manager Kül de Soup made a phone call to one Chris ‘The Rich’ Barry to see if he was up for the immense and arduous task ahead, would he record the Sausages of Ireland?! “I suppose so” he said half-heartedly, while taking a drag out of several cigarettes simultaneously.
The journey to the album nobody wanted but everybody was getting, commenced.
Then all of a sudden go-tobann, just as the sound was starting to come together, the world was overcome with a terrible sickness, and due to circumstances beyond the band’s control, the continuation of this album came to a screeching halt. This, however, may have been a blessing in disguise for this particular album as it gave the Hard Working Men time to reflect and analyse what they had already put together, and also an opportunity to write new material about their view of the state of the world.
As the world seemed to be coming to grips with the pandemic, Ispíní na hÉireann returned to the studio with more tricks up their sleeves and even more musicians to help them realise their vision. Their first single, released was ‘Talk to Joe’. A song about Tomás’ time working on the phones for RTÉ’s Liveline radio show hosted by Joe Duffy. “Lyrics stem from real situations but are altered to protect the guilty.”
Followed by ‘Please Don’t Start the Fun’, “A song about the hesitation to return to the craic of Pre-Pandemic life, however contrast to its lyrics, the music to the song would convey that the fun is only just beginning…”
‘Please Don’t Start the Fun’ Official Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r3LXUoRuKP8
‘Please Don’t Start the Fun’ single on Spotify: https://tinyurl.com/PleaseDontStart
‘Talk to Joe’ on Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/track/0w0JG3x5gzFxdYbFXnrZpN?si=d5e69bea4284498d
‘The Hard Working Men’ by Ispíní na hÉireann is out now, Friday 28th October 2022. https://ispini.bandcamp.com/music