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					The Domino Effect

The Blizzards talk to
Natasha Rocca Devine

about their new album, making friends in L.A, and fantasising about Dolly Parton...

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s I sat in the distinctive Universal Music Studios in Dublin's City centre, awaiting the arrival of Niall Breslin or 'Brez' the Lead Vocalist and Guitarist of the 'Blizzards', a wave of adrenalin just hit. With Rhianna

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With the mention of a move to the Star-studded LA, he states 'It's a big city and they don't give a crap about you…Luckily enough everyone in the band is quite strong and if we go there, we'll be going there for all the right reasons and not to throw a feather up in the air.' n a lighter note, we shared a similar adoration for the carefree nature of the life in Los Angeles. It's the only city that 'worldly-known' actors and musicians will roam the streets in a casual manner. One instance of this is clear when on a night out, Brez stumbled upon the 'Big Man' himself Ron Jeremy who then invited them to a lock-in in his local bar. The laid back nature of this city is something that would suit the manner of Brez, who has the quiet confidence of a star in the making.

and Jay Z music videos playing over and over in the background in the brightly-lit office, it didn't take me long to realise that they too were up in a new league of music legends. My next thought was a curiosity as to how this five-man band had hit it bigtime with so many artists out of work? With the sudden entrance of an eye-catching, cool, calm 6Foot -Six Brez into studio, I knew my answers were soon to be completed and here was the best man to do the job. With a strenuous recording process of their second album, the first single 'Trust Me I'm a Doctor' being released and 'The Domino Tour' on its way along with charity events on the schedule, I had expectations of a lack of energy. I stand corrected. Brez keenly filled me in the perception of their 'Ska Punk' genre typecast. 'The core of what we do is The Clash, The Specials, Band Manners, mainly Old Ska and Punk bands. Continuing that 'he was always amazed about punk and how it began'. With an uplifting centre in all of their tunes, they 'just want to make a person who hears them smile, which in this day in age doesn't seem to be happening quite a lot'. When it came to the factors of their success, one indefinite 'no' was the aid of 'X-Factor Manager types' of whom 'dissect peoples lives and buy their bands as simply as their slices of bread.' Remembering 'Back in the Seventies and eighties when music was really at its peak, bands were developed and there was much more of a personal edge to it…That's what we're keeping in it'. A band with a '100% Commitment' as their foundation along with a firm ruling to only allow others with parallel passions to help with their musical process, is an indefinite reasoning to their fast-pace achievements.

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With their track record in mind, they are visibly a band who puts their plans into action. So, I decided not to miss the opportunity to seek advice for similar artists starting out. Brez informs me 'Don't believe everything you hear, No, everything you want to hear'. He is as sharp as nails. 'First and foremost, concentrate on your songs. Listen to great pop songs and seeing why they are great pop songs, then and why they still are now.' Lastly, 'It's essential that you surround yourself with people you love and really one-hundred percent trust'. Throughout the history of music, the trouble has been down to 'money or sex, so if you can cop on between the two you should be able to keep your band together'. Completely off guard, I decided to test the main man about his own roots in Mullingar, Co. Westmeath. After five minutes of hard-graft, Brez received my prize as he truly impressed me with his statesmanship. It is here in Mullingar that he wrote their founding track 'Fantasy'. This song stemmed from his fantasy about an Eastern European lady in his local garage, who was novel to that of the young ladies of Mullingar that he had grown up with. When I cheekily asked of his own fantasy within the music business, Dolly Parton was blurted out. The ironic thing here is if his career keeps pacing on as fast as it has begun, his fantasy of meeting her may just come true! verall, It appears that signing with the world renowned Universal label along with artists such as Paul Weller, Audioslave and U2 has kept his feet firmly on the ground. 'I don't think we'll realistically ever match up to those acts' and continues to share his awareness that 'they were established when the industry had an absolute and utter power'. Despite this, his drive was potent as he spoke the mind of a true artist 'we need to be realistic and understand that at any given moment we can be dropped on our arses and that's the reality of the music business. But we're giving no reason for that to happen.' This work ethic combined with an undoubted talent is a clear explanation of their inimitable mix in this new album 'Domino Effect'.

“Own your own city before you try to accomplish any other, especially Los Angeles”.

Most recently, they have finished recording their second album in Los Angeles with one of the industries' finest music producers, 'Michael Beinhorm'; who has worked musicians such as the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Marilyn Manson, and who he now calls 'a very close friend of the band'. Whilst here, Brez seemed to have seen an insight into the industry 'As far as Los Angeles goes, I don't think LA knows what it wants'.

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Furthermore, he agreed wholly with the advice that I received from a Casting Agent in Paramount Studios on my own networking trip, 'Own your own city before you try to accomplish any other, especially Los Angeles'.

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