Falling Asunder Rock Review part II
Seamus ‘Smiley’ Bolger started out as a DJ in the Dublin clubs in the 1960s and for decades has been a feature of the Irish music scene, working variously as a rock journalist, a publisher, a roadie for Thin Lizzy, a band manager and as a gig promoter. It was in the latter role that he organised the Falling Asunder Rock Review EP in 1976. The name was first used for a tour of Ireland in July of that year, organised by Bob Geldof and Billy McGrath, which showcased the little-known groups Nightbus, Cheap Thrills and The Boomtown Rats. Hot on heels of that, a second national tour was organised by Smiley Bolger in December 1976. Billed as the Falling Asunder Rock Review part II, it featured The Jimi Slevin Band and The White Falls Band. The Jimi Slevin Band had only recently been formed following Slevin’s departure from Skid Row and included ex-Peggy’s Leg guitarists Jimi Slevin and Jimmy Gibson with former Medium Wave Band members Brian Despard on drums and Garrett Brown on bass. The Irish Rock Discography (virtually the only source of information about this record) informs us that The White Falls Band were from Limerick and had a lineup of Paul Healy (lead guitar/vocals), Dermot Sheehan (guitar/vocals), John Noughton (bass/vocals) and Liam Darcy (drums). Unlike the first tour, part II was marked by a commemorative EP with two tracks by each of the then-unsigned bands, produced by Jackie Hayden and released through CBS Records Ireland.
The Jimi Slevin Band contributed I Don’t Wanna Leave and Innocence, the latter a complex guitar instrumental harking back to Peggy’s Leg’s prog rock talents. The next year, the band were signed to EMI and released the album Getting There – credited to Jimi Slevin & Firefly – which included a re-recording of I Don’t Wanna Leave but without the guitar coda present on the EP. The White Falls Band recorded a fairly standard blues-rocker titled Black Jack which displays some solid group playing but could have benefited from better lead vocals. Second track Spider Legs, however, is an insistent piece of funk rock that unfortunately fades out just as you expect it to get even better. White Falls seem to have disappeared without trace after this EP. Smiley Bolger continued as a music promoter, became a regular on Irish TV in the late ’80s (or was it early ’90s?), and is probably best known today as the organiser of the annual Vibe For Philo concerts marking the anniversary of the death of his friend Phil Lynott.
- Jimi Slevin Band – I Don’t Wanna Leave
- Jimi Slevin Band – Innocence
- White Falls Band – Black Jack
- White Falls Band – Spider Legs