FREEDOM 35s – Dante’s Peak. 7″

Freedom 35s-Dante's Peak

Heavy hittin’ mod-funk from Keady, County Armagh, Northern Ireland. Woah, this is tough. Clocking in at a 150bpms it’s a take no prisoners track dedicated to their favourite actor, Pierce Brosnan. If you drove from Keady to Dublin you would go through his hometown of Drogheda. And incidentally the film Dante’s Peak was directed by Aussie born Roger Donaldson. So we got mad connects already.

A disabled (black ice accident) retired London policeman from my brother in law’s hometown of Glaslough, County Monaghan, Ireland took me for a scenic trip over the border via Keady to see the impressive Saint Patrick’s Church in Armagh, which looms large on the top of a hill. Even as a non-believer I found it impressively situated. If feels as though it watches out for sinners. To think that this instrumental foursome is from a small predominately Catholic town of around 3000 people is even more impressive than the imposing cathedral of Saint Patrick. Keady isn’t very far from a place called Crossmaglen. My driving buddy, who obviously wanted to freak me out with crazy shit showed me around the pro-IRA county. Apart from sending me deep into forests by myself to come across druid altars, spotting memorial plaques on roadsides of those killed by the British army and discussing scenes of infamous S.A.S. activity, he took me to see the most alarming war zone looking police station I’ve ever seen. It was disturbing. An eerie town. To think that these guys come from an area that was situated around towns that featured heavily during The Troubles, such as Coagh, Loughal and Tyrone makes their music more loaded. They might not think it relevant, but as someone who has felt the atmosphere (albeit 20years ago) of their environs, it further emphasises the drive behind their music. It’s heavy, heavy, deep funk, not lightweight wimpy cafĂ© audio. I can’t even recall any other musicians or groups from County Armagh, but if they are the first, then they’ve done the region proud.

Though the video clip came out in 2014, the vinyl single (limited to 500copies) only dropped in April this year for Record Store Day. I listen to a lot of new funk, but this one punched me right in the guts. The 7″ is still available via Mersol Music. Their influences are groups like Booker T & the MGs, The Meters and even recent acts like The Sugarman Three and the James Taylor Quartet. I only got hip to it via The Baron’s review on the excellent sixties/Mod site New Untouchables. News is that there will be a follow up 45 and hopefully a full length album. Nice to see they supported Sharon Jones And The Dap Kings in 2014 in Belfast’s Mandela Hall.

Check them out on their Facebook page.

A stack of FREE downloads, including the b-side Black Mamba can be found on their Soundcloud page.

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