CMU Approved

Approved: Sinead O’Brien

By | Published on Tuesday 25 May 2021

Sinead O'Brien

Having slowly built up a respectable catalogue of singles and EPs over the last few years, it feels like Sinead O’Brien’s career is on the verge of moving up a level. A performance recorded for the online Great Escape earlier this month was one of the standouts from the festival, and among her upcoming live dates is a support show with Idles.

Although her work could be, and often is, described as poetry, none of her output has ever been devised without music. Indeed, the original idea was to set diary entries to that music.

Now, working with guitarist Julian Hanson and drummer Oscar Robertson, she has developed a sound that gives extra weight to her densely written spoken word delivery. Being immediately attached to music as it is lifted off the page gives her words a melodic feel, despite not being sung. All this, combined with O’Brien’s performative flair, goes together to make something totally engrossing.

Her latest single, ‘Kid Stuff’, is her first of the year and feels like it marks a new era in her work. “‘Kid Stuff’ shows up all different tones on different days”, she says. “There’s something alive in it which cannot be caught or told. It is direct but complex; it contains chapters. This feels like our purest and most succinct expression yet”.

O’Brien is set to support Warmduscher at Heaven in London on 14 Jul, followed by headline shows in October. That Idles date is set for 18 Jan 2022 at Brixton Academy.

Watch the video for ‘Kid Stuff’ here:

Stay up to date with all of the artists featured in the CMU Approved column by subscribing to our Spotify playlist.