BY SEÁN P. FEENY
ONE of Donegal’s most popular bands will release their eagerly-awaited new EP of original material in Ballybofey next week.
On Saturday night, June 15, Castlefinn natives Tommy Callaghan, Orri McBrearty, Gary Doherty, and Gartan’s Colin Montgomery – better known as The Heads Of State – launch These Times at the Balor Arts Centre.
Check out this fantastic sneak preview for their new EP!
It has been nearly two years since the band’s last release, which was their fantastic single Home.
Since then the ‘Heads’ have been constantly writing and working on material by playing it live. Tommy said: “We’ve worked hard create a more or a definitive sound for the band over the last year and the outcome of this will be this first EP released.”
The band decided to work with a producer this time out and they chose to get the very talented Lifford native Michael Keeney behind the desk at the Attic Audio Recording Studio in Termon.
“Michael is a hugely experienced producer and has worked with names such as INXS, Duke Special and Foy Vance to name but a few,” said Tommy.
“We owe a great deal to Michael for taking the time to help us on this record, he’s an extremely busy man, but we knew early on we wanted to work with him on it.
“We believe it has definitely been worth the wait, not only for the experience he brought but also the help and advice on all aspects of the arranging and recording process.
The Heads of State had more than enough material for an album earlier this year when they started recording. However, they felt there would be more value in releasing this material over a few EPs.
Of course budgets and time constraints influence these decisions, but overall they felt that the EP was the right vehicle for them at this point in time as an unsigned act.
Tommy said: “The selection of the songs for the EP took almost as long as the recording process. With enough material for 4 EPs we worked hard to find the songs that fitted together best. In hindsight, I think we made the correct decision. There are both elements of light and shade on this record, which reflects what we do quite well. We also have the added benefit of having another EP of songs ready to record quite soon.”
The Heads of State not only chose to work with a top producer, but also to record their EP in what is arguably becoming one of the most renowned studios in the country, Attica Audio, owned by Tommy McLaughlin of The Villagers.
Heads frontman Tommy said: “Attica is a just fabulous studio. It’s finished to the highest standards, and its location is an added bonus.
The EP launch will be followed up in early July with the release of the single Days Long, so watch this space.
Tommy said: “The priority is to push for as much airplay a possible. We hope to follow it up with another EP in the autumn and coupled with a lot of upcoming gigs we’re sure to be busy for the next few months at least.”
Tommy said the band is very greatful for the support they have received from the local community, media, business and music industry over the past years.
“The local support we’ve received our the past few years had been incredible, from the support of local media and radio DJs, the Donegal music community, the recent sponsorship and styling by McElhinneys, Ballybofey, and most importantly those who’ve turned up at our shows and bought our music. We are indebted to you all and we promise a great night of entertainment on June 15.”
The Heads Of State have been flat out rehearsing for their big show on Saturday week. “We will be playing a lot of new material and some of the older songs, we’ve become popular for like Hands Dirty and Home so it all looks set to be a lot of fun and good music. .”
Support on the night will be provided by John Muldowney and Lurgan signer/Songwritter Ciaran Lavery. Book your tickets on Tel 07491 31840.