& THE HIT PARADE
Keep on Down the Road
Includes the single 'Oceans'; Inspiration behind the the mysterious nature of the deep, also essentially about the personal loss we all inevitably have to experience and fathom at different stages of our lives. How we cope with this and our resolve in dealing with losing the ones we love, may be perhaps the true measure of the human spirit.
The video of this song comes from New York Environmental Agency Parley for the Oceans.
Could there also be a possibility to use our abilities to create awareness around these issues as Writers, Artists, Musicians… Maybe this is what Kurt Vonnegut meant when he said we should be the eyes and ears of the creator. If nature is our creator, can using art as a message to bring consciousness around what we as individuals are capable of protecting. By creating music or art that carries some momentum in people’s minds it might continue to create more grassroots movements and people power to eventually go on to influence government legislation.
City and the Soul (2016)
Stand out tracks including 'Waiting for the light' and the single ‘Song for the Others’ - a spirited, energetic and ultimately hopeful song about the fallen woman of Irelands past- victims of the Magdalen laundries.
In ‘Song for the Others’ O’Malley tells of “the road to hell with good intentions” and laments “no more mother’s tears again”. There are missed memories, passing trains, and people we can never forget; themes which have become a staple of his repertoire. Folk storytelling is alive alongside contemporary piano and strings, with vocal melodies rising heartfelt and passionate as the track crescendos in singalong bliss.
Dreamland Arcades (2014)
Conor O' Malley’s sublime new album “Dreamland Arcades” traces a path from the dark streets of his Dublin hometown to the neon lights and faded glories of English seaside towns. “Dreamland Arcades” is melting pot of melancholia and elation, isolation and warmth, a glance at the past and a glimpse at an uncertain future. It blends cultural elements from his Irish adolescence, via his experiences living in the USA where his psyche was marinated in Americana, to his experience of living in the seaside town of Southend on the English coast.
Treading the hallowed path in the tradition of great songwriting, formative touchstones Neil Young, Bob Dylan and Tom Waits pointed the way forward, giving Conor the wherewithal to carve his particular sound.
Dear Ghosts (2009)
'Dear Ghosts' takes you on a walk through the dark streets of Dublin. From the opening tone poem of 'Winterland'- the past and the present are weaved together in a atmospheric tapestry-past the old factories, abandoned buildings and cityscapes to the searching 'Ghost of Midnight'- all the way back to the mytical landscape of forgotten heroes and returned emigres in 'All the white horses'.
The album also deals in places with loss and alienation through 'Railway Man' which tells the story of a working man coming to terms with the passing of his son. 'Shining City' is a day in the life of a homeless drifter on the edge of society. In the songs there is also an attempt to depict the feel of places which are still rooted in the old world but are coming to terms with a transition into the modern.
There is a dark and illuminating tone of experiment throughout with a variation of styles that is the sound of an artist looking to find a voice through traditional song writing and the new tools of technology.
Photo: Chrissie Mcgrady
Conor O’Malley was born in Dublin. His music mixes melody, stories, poetry, autobiography, social consciousness, history and memory, to create a style of lyric documentary that is influenced by family, friendship, culture, identity, loss and the love of people and place.
In 2009 Conor released his debut 'Dear Ghosts' which was warmly received around Ireland followed up by the critically acclaimed ‘Dreamland Arcades’, after relocating to the UK. His experience of this time was recorded further explored through the sounds of ‘City and the Soul’ in 2016. He has since been working on his 4th Album to date since returning to live and work in Dublin; a collection of new songs entitled ‘Keep on Down the Road'.
Working with great live and studio Musicians over the years has given Conor the wherewithal to carve his own unique sound in multiple genres. The thread and tradition of great songwriting always as the main focus of the projects.
Always at the heart and soul of live shows and adventures in the sonic arts have been backing band ‘The Hit Parade’ providing a long-lasting friendship and collaborative spirit that has emerged from a floating line up with Phil Adams (Drums) and Conor Purcell (Bass & Guitar) remaining firmly at the helm of proceedings. They have been rehearsing, recording (Dan Doherty of Darklands Dublin supporting production and mixing sessions for Dreamland Arcades, City and the Soul and Keep on Down the Road) and playing live with Conor in both Ireland and the UK for over 10 years.
The reception to recent gigs, festivals and radio sessions in the UK and Ireland have shown that Conor O’Malley’s timeless style has started to find a home in people's hearts.
Background Photos By: Monica Gorka