Box Camera
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Box Camera

Cork, Munster, Ireland

Cork, Munster, Ireland
Band Alternative Pop

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Music

Press


Mike Lyons has been playing music in Cork for more than ten years including stints as a solo performer and as a member of the fuzz pop outfit Treehouse. His latest incarnation is as the frontman and chief songwriter of Box Camera and 2006 sees the release of their self-titled debut album. The band has teamed up with the experienced musician and producer Simon Widdowson to make an album of rock oriented pop music.

The album opens with the current single "Never Said I". The blues-harp introduction may give the impression of a road hardened rock troubadour doing what he knows best but as the album progresses there is enough variation to ensure that no easy generalisations can be made. There are a few stand out tracks on the album, especially the sing-along "Don‘t Go Feeling Sad" and the moody "Stranded". Lyons shows a lyrical and emotional depth that will give the listener much to think about.

Solid song structures have been combined with pop harmonies and subtle strings without ever feeling overdone. Add in the occasional big chorus and Box Camera have the ingredients for wide appeal. Occasionally the main vocal slips into a Cork accent and given that it isn‘t a constant theme, this may be unintentional.

There is a strong feeling that Lyons is comfortable in his own shoes and on his own life journey - lyrics like "to live is a waking dream" and "I‘ve been restored by providence" hint at an process of self-discovery and gratitude. Having a band around him has given him the chance to avoid the acoustic songwriter genre and he is obviously enjoying this. Lead by Lyons, Box Camera have produced an enjoyable album with enough engaging songs to keep you interested.


- www.musician.ie


Box Camera’s songwriter Mike Lyons is a stalwart of the Cork music scene, having gigged there in various guises for the last 15 years, and his experience gives this album an edge absent from many of its Irish rivals. Box Camera possesses a subtle appeal that mightn’t be evident on first listen, but be patient and the lush melodies and layered hooks begin to work their charm. The opener ‘Never Said I’ is a gorgeous statement of intent and possibly the best song that Elliot Smith never wrote. Lyons’ voice manages to be both vulnerable and defiant while the band perfectly complement each other and provide some great backing vocals that make the melody linger in your head for a long time afterwards. Indeed the band has an intuitive awareness of what instrument should be pushed to the fore and there are several unexpected time changes in each song that only add to their appeal. If there’s any justice daytime radio will soon be thrilling to the lilting melodies of ‘Slings And Arrows’ and ‘Don’t Go Feeling Sad’, which manages the Beatles-esque trick of marrying melancholy lyrics to a wonderfully uplifting tune.

SEVEN/TEN

Patrick Gleeson


- Hot Press Magazine, Dublin, Ireland


Box Camera
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Box Camera is a release by a group of Cork-based musicians also known collectively as Box Camera. Their style is heartfelt and uncomplicated pop-rock music. It is refreshing and exciting to see the plentiful evidence that the days have passed when local bands could not have the opportunities they deserved. More and more Cork bands are releasing well-produced, excellent albums. Box Camera are set to join their ranks. This is a highly competent album from a local band who should go far.

Michelle Cogan
- Evening Echo


Discography

Box Camera - Box Camera AYL015

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Infectious melodies, piano and electric guitars and a heady mix of vintage organs and synths combine with lush vocals to produce the sometimes melancholy, sometimes wonderfully uplifting music that is Box Camera.

The classic pop songwriting of Cork's Mike Lyons (ex- Hooky and Treehouse) whose lyrics and phrasing recall the best of Elvis Costello and Jeff Tweedy has been combined with the sophisticated musical arrangements of producer/multi-instrumentalist Simon Widdowson (Decemberists, Arm the Elderly, Exit the Street) into a Beatle-esque brew of layered pop hooks and modern rock.

Powered by the mighty rythmn section of Jason O'Driscoll and Jon Jon Conway and joined by Graham Lynch on electric guitar, Box Camera will attract fans of classic sounds in a modern context.

Described as “a cracker” by Colm O Sullivan (Red FM) the debut album was released on September 7th an enthusiastic audience at The Triskel Arts Centre in Cork. The album is gathering momentum
on radio and gathering generous praise in local and national press.