Irish duo Lemoncello release their debut album

Photograph by Ellius Grace

On Friday 3rd May, Indie-folk duo Lemoncello shared their long-awaited debut LP, a self-titled record to be released via the iconic Claddagh Records label. The album will be available digitally, on CD and vinyl. Order here.

Honest and deliberate, yet beguiling and oblique, Lemoncello challenges both writer and listener to define the undefined, to channel the universal into the intimate. A fluid record that arrives and settles like good company, Lemoncello both ground and transport the listener through nine-tracks; chronicling the journey of learning how to hold your own in life, amidst the growth, ending and renewal of relationships with ourselves and with others.

Following the release of singles ‘Harsh Truths’ and ‘Old Friend’, the album will be accompanied on 3rd May by focus single ‘Dopamine’ alongside a music video, which tackles these same themes through the technologically dystopian lens of doom-scrolling.

This standout single from the record sees Quirke and Kinsella search for a sense of self amidst a deluge of brightly coloured distractions and deep-fried, sculpted nonsense. Harmonies fade in and out of focus, belaying the unsettling lyricism. Intense, growling acoustics blend with eerie synths and created sounds, giving weight to the posed question: “If I delete my face will my body disappear?”.

Video director Sophie O’Donovan explains: “With the video for Dopamine we wanted to play with the idea of being addicted to your phone, without taking it too seriously. We created a world that’s a mixture between bored housewives from the 1950s and some dystopian future where people never leave their homes. As Laura and Claire doom scroll, the people they see online appear in the room with them.”

Pivoting from songs of tongue-in-cheek, off-kilter confrontation to unflinching openness and vulnerability, Lemoncello is an album of questions, not answers – asking how much one must give up to become whole. From the fantastical longing of ‘All The Good Men’, to the penitent liberation of ‘Sunflower’, the inimitable alchemy that occurs when Quirke and Kinsella sing together is a prominent force on the record – the vocals forward and defiant cutting through a minimal yet dramatic soundscape of cyclical, finger-picked guitar and earthy, gritty cello playing. These elements linger and meld together in a seamless union founded in the pair’s long-standing friendship. Listeners are lured into these warm sonic hallways, lifted and pushed by strong dynamic string sections, poignant piano, dominant double bass progressions and compelling percussion – a singular sound embedded in Irish folk roots, led by the attitude of off-kilter-indie pop.

The chemistry and dynamic of the duo is captured and amplified by the record’s production at Analogue Catalogue Studios where they both recorded and mixed the album to 2 inch tape with producer Julie McLarnon at the helm. McLarnon, who has brought her analogue recording philosophy and approach to records by artists such as The Vaselines, Brigid Mae Power, Yorkston Thorne Khan, Lankum and Junior Brother left a distinctively raw, unvarnished and old-school stamp on the record.

The band says on the recording experience: “Recording the album on tape felt like the right way to capture the energy between us as a band. You don’t record to tape to make a really clean product – and that’s not what this album is – it’s an unfiltered document of a place and time. It was such a joy working with Julie.  We didn’t look at a computer screen the whole time making the record. The best part of recording to tape is the limitations that it brings. – so in this way we benefited from having to make choices quickly and trust instinct and feeling more than technical ‘correctness’. The magic comes when you put your trust in it.”

 Previously nominated for Best Folk Song and Best Emerging Folk Act at the RTÉ Radio 1 Folk Awards, the duo’s enrapturing performances have also led them to play in Dublin’s legendary Vicar Street, The Irish Arts Centre NYC, London’s Bush Hall, and to open for esteemed artists such as Lisa O’Neill, Sam Amidon, Glen Hansard and Cormac Begley.

Lemoncello have recently announced an extensive Ireland and UK tour, with tickets on sale now via

‘Dopamine’ – official video:

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