Irish house music? JACK ONEIL finds
it in A HOUSE in Dublin. Picture BLEDDYN
A-House very nearly collared some bad press
last May. With damn near the single
year behind them in the Jamesian schizo-folk
Anglo-Irish discords of 'Kick Me Again
they left Dublin for Belfast.
Only a communications breakdown 'twixt the
NME live supremo and the local stringer avoided
severe ticking off for what they reckon was
their worst gig ever. The shit-scared A House
had escaped and still await their first bad
A-House are playing their first gig in three
months in the desolate but packed Arts block
of Trinity College Dublin. 'Jesus' is inspiring
NME headlines on a regular basis; back-to-back
the motorcycle guitar meets Mark E of 'Y.O.U.'
and the more sedate 'Snowball Down' have
infiltrated the pick of '87's 45s and 'Heart
Happy' is out this week on Blanco Y Negro.
Neither saint nor sinner it's their weakest
to date but growing gradually. The live set
is overflowing with songs I've never heard
or heard of but Dave Couse's voice demands
attention - even for the most literal and
longwinded of titles: 'Hay While The Sun
Shines', 'Don't Ever Think You're Different' and 'This Child Is Yours And Not Mine'. These
are good deeds done well.
In a previous life the four Housers were
draftsmen, garda (an Irish cop), fitter-turners
and a clerk in a gin company. Now they're
Fergal Bunbury (guitar), Martin Healy (bass),
Dermot Wylie (drums) and Dave Couse (vocal
and acoustic) who is ceremoniously seasoning
a roll from the Long Hall bar. Between bites
he refutes the suggestion that his flying
jacket and acoustic guitar licks make him
the new Eddie Cochran.
'I don't play acoustic guitar licks.
the first time I ever heard that- it's
bad though, cos he can sing. I usually
Jonathan Richman or Lou Reed, people
Couse is certainly one for straight
and singing - there's a confessional
about many of his words whether the
is real or imagined. He leaves himself
open. "I think people respect
if you do that. They'll say Jesus that's
me, that's exactly the way I feel but
not afraid to say it." Couse is
to go too deeply into the lyrics -
people are usually disappointed when
explained, especially the fan who came
with the wonderful prophylactic interpretation
for the line 'I'm the only one who's
get wet' in 'Snowball Down'.
But there's more to this playhouse
sad. Martin explains: "'Stone
is about Stock Aitken Waterman and
we hate them. I saw an interview with
and I couldn't believe what they were
about how the person has to look right
how they're all good looking people.
killing music'. This particular House
runs: 'I have no heart i have no song
you can count on SAW to make things
... Good looking dumb and tall now
got it all'.
The most remarkable aspect of A House
the sheer number of songs they can
are going concerns and available at
notice. With so much ammo everyone
to get caught in the crossfire, themselves
included. Check 'Wallies Like Us'.
"There's a wally in everybody.
a wally - we're wallies, we're not
So far A House have managed to remain
from the hyperbole that rules the 'Irish
Rock Biz'- the Hot Dublin Band syndrome.
Dave spells it out: "Every band
is a hot Dublin band. Aslan- hot Dublin
Hothouse Flowers-'hot Dublin band'.
nails them all: "If you've got
out you're a hot f--ing Dublin band."