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Where are they now? 10 once-successful Irish bands and what became of them

Whatever happened to The Thrills?

EVER FIND YOURSELF glancing through your CD collection (yes, CD) and wonder, “Hey, whatever happened to them?”

Wonder no more. Here are ten Irish bands you may have wondered about and what they’re doing with themselves now.

1. The Revs

Source: vb7000/YouTube

The Revs were probably best known for tunes like Wired To The Moon and Death of A DJ. They released three albums between 2002 and 2005, before announcing a hiatus in 2007.

Since then, lead singer Rory Gallagher has relocated to Lanzarote and set up a band called Rory and the Island. (You may remember Jimmy’s Winning Matches, a song he composed in support of the Donegal gaelic football team in 2012.) Guitarist John McIntyre performs folk/trad with his wife Zoe Conway.

2. JJ72

Source: liousq/YouTube

Back in 2000, JJ72 were all the rage and one of the few Irish bands to make it in the UK, with both of their albums reaching the top 20 there. After struggles with their record label regarding their third album, the group disbanded in 2006.

So, where are they now? Lead singer Mark Greaney is a tutor at Bimm, while bassist Hilary Woods is preparing to release her latest solo album on September 18th.

3. The Thrills

Source: emimusic/YouTube

After releasing two highly successful albums between 2003 and 2004, and a slightly less successful record in 2007, The Thrills called it quits in 2008.

But whatever happened to The Thrills? (Question to be sung to tune of Whatever Happened To Corey Haim?)

Well, guitarist Daniel Ryan manages Little Green Cars (!) and dabbles in juicing. Bassist Padraic McMahon works in LinkedIn, drummer Ben Carrigan plugs away a film/TV composer and pianist Kevin Horan is a touring musician with Little Green Cars. Lead singer Conor Deasy was reported to have been working on a solo album in 2012, but we’re still awaiting that.

Not bad going, lads.

4. The Chalets

Source: odorono77/YouTube

With a catalogue of ridiculously catchy pop songs in their arsenal, The Chalets were popular from the get-go. (They even had several songs pop up in Grey’s Anatomy.) After releasing several EPs and singles, they went their separate ways in 2008.

Bassist Chris Judge is now an insanely successful children’s book author and illustrator, while guitarist Enda Loughman is one-half of the directing duo D.A.D.D.Y. (They have basically directed every decent Irish ad over the past few years.) Caoimhe Derwin and Paula Cullen, meanwhile, are involved with noise pop group September Girls.

Big buala bos.

5. Turn

Source: 021snakey/YouTube

The Meath band released three albums in the early half of the last decade, racking up one Meteor Award nomination in the process. They officially split in 2006, but have since reformed for a few sneaky gigs, including one at Electric Picnic in 2012.

Nowadays, lead singer Oliver Cole is working on solo material and will perform at this year’s Electric Picnic, while former bassist Gavin Fox briefly joined Idlewild and now works as a tutor at BIMM. (Just like Mark Greaney, wha’?) Finally, bassist Ciaran Kavanagh plays with Shadow Boxer.

6. 21 Demands

Source: Kodaliners/YouTube

Remember 21 Demands? They were runners-up on You’re A Star in 2005 and became the first independent act to reach number one in Ireland when their single Give Me A Minute topped the charts in 2007.

Where are they know?

Well they changed their name and, hey presto, they’re Kodaline now. So, yeah, they’re doing grand for themselves.

7. Sultans of Ping F.C.

Source: Threeothree33/YouTube

You’re not real if you haven’t once screeched, “DANCING AT THE DISCO, BUMPER TO BUMPER, WAIT A MINUTE, WHERE’S ME JUMPER?”

The minds behind this timeless classic are, of course, Sultans of Ping F.C.

What are they up to now? Well, lead singer Niall O’Flaherty is now Dr. Niall O’Flaherty, thank you very much, and lectures in King’s College London.

giphy (1) Source: giphy

Despite this fancy day job, Sultans of Ping F.C. still occasionally perform. A glance at their website reveals that they have two London gigs coming up in November.

Get thee to there, London Irish.

8. The Immediate

Source: immtube/YouTube

When The Immediate released their debut album In Towers and Clouds in 2006, they were instantly hailed “The Next Big Thing”. When the quartet abruptly parted ways in 2007, it came as a shock to critics and music aficionados alike.

Nowadays, Conor O’Brien performs with Villagers. (You may have heard of them.) David Hedderman works primarily as an artist and has had work exhibited in the RHA. Meanwhile, Peter Toomey regularly DJs with arts collective Young Hearts Run Free and Barra Heavey is a marketing and business support manager.

9. Blink

Source: ruij2301/YouTube

They were the reason Blink 182 had to add the “182″ to their name and the first band to appear on the Eircom phone cards. Yes, Blink really had it all. After a string of successful singles and albums, they sort of just went away? Frontman Dermot Lambert released a solo album in the interim, while Robbie Sexton transitioned into digital marketing.

But now they’re back!

The band will celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the release of their debut album by reforming for a gig in The Button Factory on October 25th.

10. Carter Twins

Source: SonyMusicIrelandLtd/YouTube

For about a year, Carter Twins were the hottest thing on the block. But after releasing three singles, they were promptly never heard from again. Oops! What are Les Frères Carter up to now?

Performing in a Rat Pack tribute called The Brat Pack, obviously. As their website puts it, “When The Pack hit town, everyone comes out to play!”

So there you are now.

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About the author:

Amy O'Connor

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