Epics come and epics go, some will stand the test of time and others fall into the trap of becoming side-lined, browning with age, bleached in part by the weather streaming against the frames and forgotten, a dusty reminder of what they once stood for in the pantheon of music.
There are moments when the world, or at least certain people with decency in their hearts and the courage in their minds, is able to make a huge difference. There are many problems to be discussed, to be addressed and be solved, no matter how far we come as a civilisation, no matter the dizzy heights of industrial might, of reaching out beyond our mortal capability into the stars and the progress of technical know-how, people fall through the gaps. They become unseen, almost invisible, past the point of sight until they blur into their surroundings and whether it is through the actions of someone else or their own misfortune, brought on perhaps by a Government and others that just don’t care, the cracks open up regardless and the streets, the parks and the obscured shadows become the home of the dispossessed and the homeless.
John Gibbons, part of Only Child’s live set at The Bluecoat, Liverpool. August 2014. Photograph by Ian D. Hall.
Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *
If ever there is a time in someone’s life in which you can say to someone, “Wow, I am impressed with the dedication to the cause”, then to come on stage and play magnificently just after the heart, brain and soul have been swamped with the overwhelming emotions of becoming a parent for the first time is probably that time.
It seems an interminable age since Alan O’ Hare put forward the cause. The imposing marriage between the personal thought and the anger that burns within at the way that the world has taken a sudden turn to an extreme position in that all has been made steadily good now comes crashing down amongst the bitterness of memories. Yet there is hope, there should always be the glimmer of optimism that makes each day worthwhile and keeps the anger tucked up inside just that little bit longer. Such is the power of Alan O’ Hare’s writing under the banner of Only Child that the latest album, From Muddy Water To Higher Ground is just that, the anticipation of seeing your loved one smile whilst raging at the past and the future in the same breathe.
One of the great Liverpool singer-songwriters of recent years, Alan O’ Hare and his band Only Child will be performing at The Zanzibar Club on Seel Street on Saturday 19th January as they open their music 2013 account as part of Liverpool’s Songbook Sessions.
Only Child released a self-titled E.P. late last year and launched it with a well-received gig at Leaf on Bold Street. Support slots with Miles Hunt, Amsterdam and Steve Pilgrim followed and the band are looking forward to opening their 2013 account with a slot at ‘The Songbook Sessions’.
Robert Vincent at Leaf on Bold Street. Photograph by Ian D. Hall
Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *
Even if you have been aware of an artist’s work for a while, there is something unimaginably superb at catching them live for the first time. With Robert Vincent opening up at Leaf before Dave O’ Grady, the audience realised very early into Robert’s set that they were in for a very enjoyable and exclusive, entertaining evening.
The clanking of tea cups and sandwich plates being scurried around to the patrons of Lucy in the Sky restaurant is somehow a comforting wall of sound as I wait for Liverpool singer songwriter Alan O’ Hare. Like the restaurant, Alan O’ Hare has been busy beyond belief. A new album to launch which was warmly received by all, various gigs to perform at with one of Liverpool’s finest bands, The Trestles and which Bido Lito magazine call “Purveyors of heart-on-your-sleeve pop rock” and now the upcoming launch of another new song in the form of the quirkily titled Oscar Wilde (Stole My Morning).
I don’t have to wait long, Alan is caught up in traffic but I don’t have time to even take a sip of my tea from the overworked waitress as Al bounds over to me, trademark grin upon his face and looking for all intense purposes as if he received the best news in the world ever but had been told to keep it too himself.
Originally published by L.S. Media. August 22nd 2012.
L.S. Media Rating ****
Alan O’ Hare was one of the members of one of the finest bands to come out of Liverpool in the last ten years. As part of The Trestles, they didn’t just make good music, the exemplified a growing disaffection with the world and their debut album was one of the most important made by a Merseyside band in years.
When The Trestles went their separate ways, to those that loved the music, it felt as though a voice was being lost to the high pitch babble that is force fed on occasion from reality television programmes.