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Biography
After 13 years of being the favorite unreleased album here at What Are Records?, the new digital release from our beloved, sorely missed Irish friends, Lir, "06/93 Acoustic Sessions," is finally available for everyone to enjoy.
W.A.R.? signed this exciting young band back in 1994, and released their two critically acclaimed rock albums, "Magico Magico," and "Nest." Meanwhile, the band toured the USA repeatedly, and quickly built a strong live following....

"an imaginative new band...if you still believe in bands with melody and heart, whatever you do, try to catch Lir..."
- Boston Globe, 6/30/94

"Magico Magico!....this album lives up to it's title. Pleasant songs, strong melodies, thoughtful lyrics, and a charming voice to tie it all together. How can it go wrong?"
- Alternative Press, 8/94

...Unfortunately, just as they were reaching that famous "tipping point," outside factors brought an end to their time together. (They all remain friends, and involved in other musical endeavors, and the lucky people of Ireland still get a nearly annual Lir re-union show)

Luckily, they left us a box full of tapes, including one very special session - where the usually plugged-in band spent an afternoon or two recording acoustic versions of some beautiful new songs.

The childhood friends' shared love of folk music - they were the ones to turn us onto Nick Drake, way before that car commercial - is on display throughout, particularly on dual centerpieces, "From A Life" and "In Your Place."

The acoustic setting of this recording proves especially suited to lead singer David McGuiness, whose voice reminds one of both Mr. Drake and Ben Gibbard, and the Joni Mitchell and John McLaughlin loving lead guitarist, Ronan Byrne.

"06/93 Acoustic Sessions" is available at all digital retailers, including What Are Records' own brand new on-line store.

 

1995 "Nest" Bio

(from 1995) Nest is the first recorded showcase for Lir's new twin-guitar lineup. The resulting sonic shift is put to excellent use on each of the eleven original songs on this album. Here's the whole story:

part one: America meets Lir:
The members of Lir have been performing together in Ireland since their teens. Just now in their early twenties, the band is already reaping the benefits of years of hard work and experimentation. In their home country, Lir are as popular as a band can get without being mobbed on the streets.

Last year, the band turned their attention to our shores. America's quite a bit bigger than Ireland, where a national tour takes about two weeks. Undaunted by this task, Lir spent ten months of 1994 touring on behalf of their first stateside CD, Magico Magico!. Response to the record and the band's live shows were positive:

"an imaginative new band...if you still believe in bands with melody and heart, whatever you do, try to catch Lir..."
- Boston Globe, 6/30/94

"Magico Magico!....this album lives up to it's title. Pleasant songs, strong melodies, thoughtful lyrics, and a charming voice to tie it all together. How can it go wrong?"
- Alternative Press, 8/94

part two: building a Nest
During this tour, Lir sent back to Ireland for more musical firepower in the form of their friend Colm Quearney. Colm quickly added new textures to the band's songwriting with his backing harmonies and blues drenched guitar style. The quintet quickly tightened up on the road and decided to record their second album in America before returning home.

Sick of nondescript hotel rooms, Lir took over the house of W.A.R.? label boss Rob Gordon for three weeks to record Nest . The album features songs written while the band was touring as well as previously unreleased concert favorites. New or old, all of Nest's songs are doubly blessed; well tested on the road and freshly charged with the spark of a new band.

part three: back to the road
After a well deserved but short spring break and a series of sold out shows in their home country, Lir hit the European summer festival circuit for the first time, wowing crowds and raising the stakes for the established headliners each night.

This fall Lir returns to America, still young and eager, but now also more focused and experienced, ready to add to the hard earned gains they made for themselves last year.