In January 2001, about a year after myself and Donard McCabe started Invisible Agent we went to hear a band called :undermine: play in the Temple Bar Music center in Dublin. We heard them again at the Mean Fiddler a few months later and swapped numbers and email addresses. Dublin city is not exactly a sprawling metropolis so it wasn’t long before we met :undermine: band members Ian and Dara again at gigs around town. It was an exciting time in Ireland, the electronic music scene was vibrant and the attitude of punters and producers was open and enthusiastic (and still is).
:undermine: were a 4 piece band with influences such as Tool, The Prodigy and releases on Rephlex and Warp record labels. The band had a unique style and certainly released a lot of energy on stage. Every time I heard them play it was an intense and unusual experience. More than you can say about most bands. In 2003 Invisible Agent net-released a 4 track EP by :undermine: and some of their tracks would also be included on our first and very popular free Invisible Agent compilation CD. They were described in the Journal of Music in Ireland as “one of the best electronic acts in Ireland”. Certainly a good start.
At the same time Dara and Ian started a project called Lakker, heavily influenced by breakcore and noise. We heard their creations and jumped at the opportunity to help promote their talents. Not only did we release a 4 track net release by Lakker in 2003 we also released (probably not many of you know this) a 5 track net-release by Suburban Cutting Champions (another moniker of theirs). Later they would go on to release on other fine labels such as Alphabet Set, RISC, Lazybird, Acroplane, !Kaboogie and Stasis. They certainly work hard at attracting followers with their addictive, energetic and glitchy bass heavy salvos of sound. Their intricate programming and experimental mash-ups using everything from hardware loops to crazy software configurations certainly keeps even the most lethargic listener engaged and entertained. Eo and Dara have got even more attention lately, Richard D James played 3 Lakker tracks in one of his DJ sets (July 2011), it must be encouraging to get a nod from Mr James.
So what’s the point of this little history lesson? Well, after all this time both Eo and Dara are still creating and Invisible Agent is alive and kicking (although at times we are never sure the bilge pump will keep all the water out). I think that’s pretty neat and it gives me unmeasurable pleasure to announce Ian Mc Donnell’s first solo EP on Invisible Agent entitled ‘mnk’. Keep your ears open and eyes peeled for future releases from Eomac and Lakker. Exciting times all round.
Remember, you heard it first on Invisible Agent ;) oh, and do tell your friends.