Comrade Hat – album launch


Comrade Hat – Old Gods, Vol. 2 Album Launch. With Ben Flavelle-Cobain.

Comrade Hat is the songwriting arm of Derry-based multi-instrumentalist/composer Neil Burns. With a background in classical composition and jazz, their large back catalogue spans acoustic, electronic & experimental work. Steadily building a cult following, he has found critical acclaim for his music, which is equal parts lounge lizard, soul searching balladeer and cosmic adventurer.

Old Gods began as a lockdown-prompted trawl through the archives, but quickly took on a life of its own. The result is a two-volume compilation of new and old, fearlessly crossing genres but unified by its belief in intuition and the creative process, personified by the titular old gods. Vol. 2 follows the NI Music Prize longlisted Vol. 1, and leans into his experimental impulses, embracing a swirling mix of psychedelia, cosmic funk, folk, electro pop, bossa, jazz, and everything in-between, all at once, in what might well be Comrade Hat’s most ambitious statement to date.

He presents it here with a full band featuring pillars of NI’s jazz scene Meilana Gillard (tenor sax), Rohan Armstrong (bass), Andrew McCoubrey (drums) and Stephen McClenahan (guitar), with jazz-informed rising star songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Ben Flavelle-Cobain supporting in the intimate surroundings of McHughs basement.


Having worked extensively as a session musician with Célia Tiab and Joshua Burnside among many others, Ben Flavelle-Cobain has been on and off stage constantly since he began his journey as a professional musician at 18.

Inspired by his grandfather Jackie Flavelle, an eager experimentalist in Jazz and Blues who worked alongside Chris Barber’s Jazz Band, Dr John and Paul McCartney, he was never in doubt his path would be in music.

Now, as an artist, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist he stakes his own claim with the release of his debut E.P “electric//emotion” co-produced by resident SoftBoy artist Brién (Kojaque, Kaidi Tatham, Célia Tiab).

Ben takes a genre-fluid approach to music with a new vision to leave his personal mark.