|Joan As Police Woman at Liss Ard 2012|
Due to some navigational negligence on my part, myself and the soon-departing stud arrive in Skibbereen in time to catch former Hüsker Dü frontman Bob Mould rocking out the hits from Sugar's now-twenty-year-old Copper Blue, the recital of the seminal punk-rock record delighting the nineties kids in attendance at the main stage. The atmosphere at the west Cork jamboree is already starting to cook, akin to the sun which has just made a rather impressive fashionably late entrance. For me, security have always led the line in setting the tone of a festival's temperament and by this stage we have already been escorted to the family camping area by an extremely agreeable hi-vis jacketed fellow where we find a similarly illuminously-suited chap enthusiastically helping a mother and son erect their temporary weekend home.
A slightly larger tent is currently housing Lisa Hannigan, the Meath-born maiden serenading little Saoirse and Sean with the calming melodies and tongue-in-cheeky lyrics of 'Safe Travels (Don't Die)', an ode to safety whilst within the cosy confines of the acoustic/literary stage eighties hit-maker Colin Vearncombe aka Black is still maintaining it is a 'Wonderful Life'.
A quick pitstop at Lebanese Kitchens for a tastier-than-thou falafel fuels my safe travels back to the main stage for Chromatics, the Portland Oregon synth-rockers - led by casually chic clad vocalist Ruth Radelet - completing an illuminating set with scintillating covers of Kate Bush's 'Running Up That Hill' and Neil Young's 'Hey Hey My My'.
|Nile Rodgers of Chic|
Rounding off day one, Nicholas Jaar politely supplies some ambient tunes for those of us who have occupied the mound near the kids Tír na nÓg play area. Eager to remain festival-active yet acquiescent to the fact that there would be no more jiving on this night. Reluctantly, to bed and sleep we drift.
|West Cork Ukulele Orchestra|
|Joan As Police Woman|
A relaxed set from legendary folk-hippy Roy Harper (complete with a gripping rendition of the Led-Zeppelin-inspiring 'Highway Blues') is followed by a tent-filling appearance by Cork's very own chart-conquering kahuna, Mick Flannery. The Blarney-born balladeer may be renowned for his tender ballads, but his loyal band contain a punch that deserves more credit with Hugh Dillon's electric guitar simply soaring on heavier number, 'Wait Here'.
It is at the end of the Glaswegian's hypnotic late showing that I wander off, bumping into the newly-crowned queen of my heart: Joan "As Police Woman" Wasser. It seems the New York temptress is as taken with the surroundings as I am with her. "It's really special. I have never been anywhere like this..." Me neither Joan but I will most certainly be back next year.
To read interviews with Liss Ard artists click below:
See the excellent highlights reel compiled by Darragh Byrne Videographer below.
- For further details on Liss Ard visit www.lissardfestival.com