Hermitage green are a Limerick based five piece rock band consisting of Dan Murphy (guitar and vocals, Barry Murphy (Bass and vocals), Dermot Sheedy (drums and bodhran), Darragh Graham (percussion, digeridoo and banjo), and Darragh Griffin (keys and guitar) who fuse many different styles while using a plethora of instruments, from harmonicas to digeridoos and everything in between. From the second they took the stage you could tell the crowd were ready to party – after all it was Hermitage greens first full capacity show in Dublin in more than two years.
Support on the night came from up and coming alt-rock artist Local Boy. With smooth guitars and laid back beats, he fuses alt-rock and hip-hop in interesting way, as well as displaying a vast vocal range. From smooth soulful sections with a powerful delivery, to rap verses, Local Boy delivered a captivating performance to start the night. Muttonhead, a label mate of Local Boy was also on hand to deliver a verse in XXX. ‘Trumpets’ from his first EP ‘Local boy rules everything’ was a stand out track on the night with it’s soulful guitar licks and relatable subject matter. The track discusses the importance of music and how it can make your day better.
Hermitage green opened the show strong with upbeat fan favourite ‘Not your Lover’ which the crowd was happy to hear before moving on to ‘Jenny’ which had the crowd singing back, so much so the band took a pause to take it all in. A few tracks later the band took it down a notch with ‘Lake Winnipesauke’ which describes the time they spent at the in lake during summers in New Hampshire which was a beautiful moment.
The next notable moment was when singer Dan prefaced ‘All in All’, a song a loss with a touching story about a mother who had recently lost her daughter during the pandemic, before dedicating the song to her and stressing the importance of live music and cherishing the moments created at these shows. During ‘Ishmael and Maggie’ the whole band coming to the front of the stage with Dermot Sheedy displaying his skill on traditional Irish instrument the bodhran.
Towards the end of the set the band display their musicianship with each member having a solo on their instrument of choice. Showcasing a number of different instruments including the harmonica, bodhran, congos, bongos and digeridoo, before preceding to have a ‘rave’ using these instruments. Another highlight in the set and always one of my favourite songs to see live was their cover of Canadian folk classic ‘Glow of the Kerosene Light’ original written by Wince Coles. The crowd were shushing each other to take in the moment as the track is slower than the rest of the set with only a guitar and bodhran carrying Barry’s voice, with beautiful back up vocals from the rest of the band.
The show ended with the phenomenal ‘Lion’s Share’ which uses a digeridoo and harmonica to create an amazing sound. During this song Dan came down into the photo pit to interact with the sound, something we have to been able to do for a long time. Overall, Hermitage Green put on a fantastic show that the crowd certainly enjoyed. Hermitage Green showed once again why they are regarded as one of the best live bands in the country. I think Barry summed it up well at the end of the show when he said ‘ that was my favourite show ever’ while walking off stage. Do yourself a favor and go and see Hermitage Green when they arrive in your city.