Cian Nugent is a young scally wag with some serious steel-string bending chops. In the late Jack Rose’s parting interview with the world, featured in the re-launch issue of Arthur magazine, he credits Mr Nugent as being one of his favourite new guitar players. That’s some serious praise coming from a man who dedicated most of his life to the guitar. Being aware of Mr Roses past recommendations, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise to find that a big label has come along and scooped this young thing up. ‘Hire Purchase’ 7” is part of Matador records ‘Going Home Alone 2013 Subscription Singles subscription series’.
Slap the vinyl down on the record player, send it spinning and you get what you expect from Mr Nugent: clear solo guitar playing with subtle space and depth. Slowly, as the track proceeds, some beautiful studio effects creep in, that remind me of some of Jim O’Rourke’s production. Then whack, a minute in and we get thumping bass and percussion in our ears pounding with conviction, while Cian’s now decidedly electric guitar coolly rides high. As the side nears its end Aibhe Nic Oireachtaigh’s Viola is subtly droning away in the background until its floats above everything else and we’re left suspended in space with nothing left to do but turn over the vinyl to see how it ends.
Side B, thankfully continues where side A left off and we get back into it. The high light of this track is a wonderful guitar riff that sounds like a multi coloured flower that opens up to reveal its full spectrum, levitating for awhile before more around it join in. Oh yer, while all these sonic flowers erupt we are falling down a waterfall, not sure how the physics work but this is dreamland we’re talking about. Some of these sounds remind me of Werner Herzog’s Grizzly Man sound track, particularly Richard Thompson’s contribution; while at other times you can’t help thinking about a 1970’s Prog band. Like all good Prog bands, they just don’t want to end the party times any time soon, hence this one track is sliced in two, stretching both sides of the vinyl. I had the pleasure of witnessing Mr Nugent with The Cosmos in January of this year (2013 for you future people) and I can tell you from personal experience that their overextended jams create this insane propulsive trance inducing music. Energy levels are high and it sends the audience into a frenzy. There’s an opportunity to get into another frenzy at the Hire Purchase 7” Single Launch in Dublin:
Video Interview: ‘In Conversation with… Cian Nugent’
Cian Nugent & The Cosmos – ‘Hire Purchase’ Live @ Cafe Oto
‘Hire Purchase’ 7″ Single launch:
Cian Nugent & The Cosmos + The Family Elan + Cryboys
Saturday April 8th 2013
Get tickets here
Get hold of 7” here:
Review Video by: Harry Wheeler