"Spiritual nirvana by the power of the riff - anyone who doubted this is one of the best bands in the country is arguing against and impenetrable wall of sound"


Yakuza are a Belfast / Coalisland based band who play rock music with a heavy interest on the noise, melody and rhythm and the ways in which they interact. Initially brought together by a shared love of noisy yet melodic guitar trash (Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr, REM) and some spectecularly poor A-Level results, the band formed in small town Co. Tyrone in 1997 and consists of:

Ronan Quinn – guitar and vocals
David Mc Cann – guitar and vocals
Philip Mc Kernan – bass
James Mc Donald – drums

A move to Belfast and deeper emmersion in the wider Northern Ireland music scene followed and Yakuza has developed a small but perfectly formed and fiercely loyal local fanbase thanks to an incendiary (in some cases literally) live show that has seen the band open for such legends of Northern Irish music as The Undertones and Therapy? as well underground favourites such has Liars, Oxes and Electric Eel Shock.

The bands sound has developed along the course of a series of demo tapes, CDRs, compilation appearances and 7”s, incorporating new influences such as punk funk rhythms (Pil, The Birthday Party) post-rock instrumentals (Slint, Don Caballero) and alt-country story telling (Wilco, Palace)

This development in sound coalesced on the bands debut album “One Nation Under Awed” recorded by Seattle based producer David Dubh Black and released on the bands own Nova Records label in 2003.

Not many people bought “One Nation Under Awed” but everyone who did, formed a band and the critics went wild for it:

“…they leave the stage with the audience wanting more and not for the first time this year, Yakuza leave and atmosphere hanging in the air. Like you’ve actually just witnessed something important. Anyone who doubted this is one of the best bands in the country is arguing against and impenetrable wall of sound…”

Phil Crossey, Alternative Ulster Magazine.

“…at times the band seem literally possessed by their own staccato rhythms, wiry riffs and angular edges that fuse REM style melody with strung out Gang Of Four energy. Yakuza assail our senses in a violent yet pleasureable manner, spiritual nirvana delivered by the might of the riff…”

David Roy, The Irish News.

“…Yakuza seem intent on making you want to rip your ears off, such is the unrelenting ferocity of their melodic post-whatever noise. ‘Everyone Thinks I’m A Dinosaur’ sounds anthemic, like it could shift mountains…”

David Mc Laughlin, Creativeni.com

“…Yakuza have plenty of the Cobain spirit, fuzzing it up nicely with twisted talking blues and feedback ruling forever…”

StuartBailie, BBC Radio Ulster

Yakuza have toured widely in their young lives including four visits to the UK, one trip to Italy and multiple jaunts around Ireland. They are currently working on their second album


Shirts and Skins

Written By: Yakuza

Why do you want a human cannonball in your yard like a par five hole in one? You'd like to see me dribble one the floor

On a winters day
Take me higher

Shirts and skins, take your aspirins

I don't know, I don't what you are, dig a hole, show the bear the trappers home, living life with this royal methadone, we are the go-to fools for the drugs

Shirts and skins, take your aspirins,

On a winters day
Take me higher

Everyone Thinks I'm A Dinosaur

Written By: Yakuza

How many is a perfect number this time?

And how long's a perfect time to wait?

In this crowd of people I don't belong to, burn the flag there's too much violence in my name

These hundred sheets mean I can do what I want, everyone knows but no one believe

I fell down and I felt sick but at least it feels familiar

In this mess we're in, desperation needs forgiveness

The roof caved in, I swear I heard someone yell "you people scare me more than spiders in my bed"

A naked screaming inscet lying naked on the floor

He was still on fire when cops came through the door

I got sold and I got screwed, I grew up and everyone else moved

A thousand years from now, no-ones going to keep this memory


Written By: Yakuza

I'm very sorry for you
I'll kill you if you want to

What's worse than never knowing
Is how you'll never know me

I'm very sorry for you
Are you as sorry for me

I'll kill you if you if you want to
I'd even do it for free


"Everyone Thinks I'm A Dinosaur" 7" Single 1970 Records 2002

"One Nation Under Awed" Album Nova Records 2004

Tracks from both releases received airplay on BBC Radio 1, BBC Radio Ulster, 2 FM and Today FM

Set List

Current set list:

"Magnum Pi"

"Shirts and Skins"

"My Beautiful Knuckles"


"We Are Not The Rolling Stones"

"The Last Elastoplast"

"What Were They Psychos?"

"Halla Valhalla"

"What You Don't Know"

"Pastor Of Muppets"

"Everyone Thinks I'm A Dinosaur"

"Your Face"

All originals

Set list approx: 40mins - 1 hr