"McCREANOR DRAWS ON HIS GENIUS FOR COMIC PROJECT"
by BRENDAN McKEOWN & MARK WHYTE
review taken from The Mirror(London, England), 7th June 2013
There's something oddly familiar about Conor McCreanor's project theuncontested.com, a sort-of melancholic story-board set to music (or vice versa).
Perhaps it's in the comic strip panels, somehow reminiscent of those unsettling, Japanese online escape-the-room games, rendered in line drawings and sepia washes and never quite telling the whole story.
There are also hints of A Scanner Darkly, that equally sinister comic-book movie of Philip K Dick's sci-fi thriller. Or perhaps it's the music, itself nodding to Radiohead but with other, darker influences rescued from deep within the recesses.
There are drum and bass beats along with jazzy double bass riffs, sleazy funk and soul and the kind of vibraphone chops to make Money Mark proud. Familiar yet awfully strange.
The concept is that there's this fictional, unnamed town, probably somewhere in the American Midwest, the sort you've seen on countless TV shows and films, through which drifters breeze, wannabees escape and where deadbeats wash up. It's the sort of town where bad shit happens in motels, drug stores get raided and, no doubt, hundreds more everyday, mundane lives are lived out in an everyday, mundane manner.
Anyway, set in this town are little vignettes written by McCreanor with collaborators including former INXS frontman Ciaran Gribbin and set to the illustrations by David McClelland.
There are five tracks and to listen to them you navigate about the town to bring you to the right setting. Our favourite is the haunting Where Are You Calling From and its images of a lonely old man lingering on a park bench.
The beauty of it all is that there is no final destination - it's not aimed at making McCreanor rich or famous.
It's done purely as an outlet for the creativity he pushes to the side in his day job as musician for hire.
Click on theuncontested.com and have a wander around but be careful - you may just get stuck in it...
Feb 2015 saw the release of Foy Vance “Live at Bangor Abbey” following the award winning “Joy of Nothing” album released Summer 2013. Having toured the US and UK in 2013 and 2014 Conor will be back on the road and in the studio with Foy later in the year.
Conor will be appearing on the double bass and electric bass with Gretchen Peters for her forthcoming UK “Blackbirdsʼ tour during March/April 2015. Some Summer festivals to be announced with Gretchen imminently. Gretchen was recently inducted into the Nashville songwriters hall of fame.
Feb 2015 also saw the release of Matt McGinnʼs 2nd album “Latter Day Sinner” following a successful album launch and appearances at Electric Picnic and the winner of the 2FM award.
A new album with Barry Kerr (date to be finalised) will be released later this year.
Other acts and albums include playing and recording with Ciaran Gribbin (001), The4OFUS (Fingerprints, Heaven and Earth), Pale Blu Jak (Faces), Matt McGinn (Livinʼ), Niall Rice (Forever Young), Steafán Hanvey (Honeymoon Junkies), Claire Sproule (Shades of Night) and Building Pictures (Training up my soul).
Conor also travelled the length and breadth of the US and Canada with the production Celtic Thunder and appears on the albums (Heritage, Storm, Take me Home, Itʼs Entertainment, Voyage and Christmas) and with Phil Coulter (The Composerʼs salute)
The Uncontested is an ongoing collaboration between Conor McCreanor and various musicians with the accompanying illustrations and design by David McClelland.
David McClelland, David Creative