Hosted by MCD, Lost Lane, Dublin, October 13th
Written by Elina Filice & Naomi Boshari
If you haven’t made it down to Lost Lane yet you need to get on that. The venue is located down an alley with lights hanging overhead, making you forget by the time you reach the doorway that you’re in the heart of Grafton Street. It looks like an old Victorian house turned bar, complete with gothic architecture and lots of velvet.
Toshín, a seven-piece soul-infused funk band, opens the show with a horn heavy tune complete with a bossa nova groove. This band is known to be energetic and entertaining, and to reliably cause a serious bop. Toshín on lead vocals has an undeniable stage presence that gets the whole crowd moving. She is Lizzo meets Aretha Franklin, and takes the role of front woman to a whole new level. She is playful, powerful, and theatrical, and the band grooves devotedly along with suave-funk energy.
The level of musicianship is seriously impressive. (At one point, Louis Younge was playing the keys and sax at the same time.) The songs never rush, they take their time to build into an abundant sonic oasis full of spirit and swagger. The dedicated rhythm section lay the foundation for smooth horns and vocals to dance overtop. Toshín and backup vocalist Shannon play off each other in sound and movement, and it’s almost impossible not to dance along. They were joined on stage by Zapho to perform their next single, “Eat, Sleep, Sex, Desire.”
Next is Shaky Shack, self-described as “Shaky Pop.” As soon as they step on stage the entire vibe of the venue changes. Alex Winter, lead vocals, quietly fixes sunflowers around his microphone. The lights turn blue.
Shaky Shack’s sound is softer, groovy, but compelling. Alex’s voice is smooth and calming. Indie rock sounds with funky grooves, the group effortlessly mixes genres to establish a unique sound. They start the set with some introspective indie, creating soundscapes with ambient sax and well delivered vocals. This makes the funk elements that follow all the more welcome, and the crowd is ready to move. Their tune “Sucking on a Blunt” is a storytelling song, everyone caught on and the whole room was laughing and singing along.
You can feel the energy of the crowd pick up as Munky take the stage. They jump into it with a fiery opening song, and the crowd is ready. Having played at venues and festival stages around the country and beyond, it’s clear that they have a growing and loyal fan base who trust them to deliver a good time, serious tunes, and ultimate energy.
Lead vocals from Zachary sail above the fervour and funk-filled energy of the band. He carries his frontman duties with ease, with a powerful voice that easily transitions from sing to scream to back again. None of the boys seem able or interested in standing still, all four bodies moving frantically in time throughout the set.
Their performance is brimming with wild energy, building throughout the set and becoming more furious as a packed house rides the disco funk wave that MUNKY are creating. The floor was literally shaking, everyone in the building was moving. The band contrast the clean and crisp with the frantic and fuzzy, swerving from controlled to not controlled and back again with riff and rhythm in the drivers seat (the lads getting locked in the back).
Elements of funk and disco are mixed with punk indie, and rock. Though their set includes a diverse range of sounds, grooves, and melodies, each song is infused with a commitment to groove and furious energy from start to clamorous finish.
Shaky Shack: https://www.facebook.com/shakyshackmusic/