A recent Video from 'Collaborations'
"Silvaticus // Sunrise"
Press / Bio / Discography
Úna Keane is a composer + producer from Dublin. Growing up in a musical household, she started composing music around age 10. Exposure to both classical & traditional Irish musical traditions is evident in the tonality of her work, but her music falls into neither category. Early musical influences include Brian Eno, Delia Derbyshire, Mike Oldfield & Laurie Anderson. She credits her grandfather Liam de Brúinéir with helping her to develop an 'ear', a free, experimental approach to making music. He started teaching her fiddle age 5 (the same age she started exploring the piano), and would record pieces on a cassette tape for her to listen back to & practise at home.
She's released 3 Albums in the past 4 years, financed through crowd-funding. Her approach is very DIY: In addition to making music, she produces her own artwork & videos. She's also been wearing PR, tour management & distribution hats. Since the release of piano solo LP ‘As I Wake, Still I Dream’ in 2017, she’s been steadily building a following on the ambient, neoclassical scene.
She did stray into the world of singer / songwriting for a while, releasing Saya Nova EP (2004) and her debut album Trees (2010), to some success. However, just as she did as a 10 year old, she prefers the immersive nature of instrumental music. While her undergrad studies were in Computer Science (with a side order of AI, Linguistics & French), she followed that with Postgrad studies in Music Technology at TU Conservatoire Dublin, and later went on to study Film Scoring at Boston's Berklee College of Music. All self-funded while working in tech & through teaching work. She's a life-long vegan, both for animal welfare & environmental reasons.
a (neo)classically (un)trained composer / pianist with a background in tech ; she blends piano, electronics, movement & film ; her use of cyclical patterns and looped motifs produces music that mines deep whilst conjuring cinematic landscape ; recurring themes in her work link nature, music & science.
Sophomore instrumental album ‘In the Deep’ was released at the end of 2019 with shows at D-Light Studios in Dublin and Servant Jazz Quarters in London. Lauren Murphy, reviewing for The Irish Times drew comparisons to the work of Ólafur Arnalds and Max Richter, citing her use of looped tracks and field recordings, while RTE 2FM's Dan Hegarty heralded it as a "stunning piece of work that will have you floating from tears to joy". Of her work over the past few years, Tony Clayton-Lea has named her "probably one of the best exponents of instrumental music that comes from a quiet, calm place". She recorded the album in an old Victorian Railway worker's cottage in Dublin 8 on her 100 year old Steck Baby grand Piano using a Tascam hand-held recorder.
At the end of 2020 she put out critically-acclaimed Live Album 'Collaborations' on her newly-formed UKM label. Recorded at Dublin's Pepper Canister Church on March 5th 2020 (a week before lockdown), it features Stephen Shannon, Liam Ó'Maonlaí, Lōwli, Gareth Quinn Redmond & Ronán Conroy. Named Irish Album of the Year by Broadsheet.ie, it garnered a glowing 8.5/10 review from Hot Press and 4 stars from The Irish Times. It includes work from her last 2 LPs, as well as some new work and in-the-flow improv. The concert was recorded, mixed and mastered by Adam KJ, and Úna & Adam co-produced. A Limited Edition Vinyl Pressing of ‘Collaborations’ is available here.
As for 2021 / 2022: She's been working from her home studio in Dublin on some solo, as well as on a couple of collaborative projects ; There's a new studio album in the pipeline for 2022.
"While there is a timeless nature to these beautifully composed minimalist instrumentals, her use of looped tracks and field recordings give it a modern day perspective, akin to the work of Ólafur Arnalds, while her Max Richter influence is also audible. A simultaneously thought-provoking and mesmerising listen" - Lauren Murphy, The Irish Times "Entrancing" - Hot Press "Consistently beautiful" - Tony Clayton-Lea "Beautiful music to get lost in" - The Sunday Times "Testament to the wonderful mysteries of sound" John Kelly "A stunning piece of work that will have you floating from tears to joy" - Dan Hegarty, RTE 2FM
"Go and experience the genius that is Úna Keane. She'll take you away and hopefully you'll make it back" - Michael Smiley
// R E C E N T P R E S S //
- Sept 2021: ‘Collaborations’ Vinyl Edition: Reviewed by Spellbinding Music
- June 2021: ‘Collaborations’ set for physical release on 16.07.21 – IMRO
- April 2021: Guest feature on Arts Insight Podcast
- March 2021: Hot Press premiere 2nd single from ‘Collaborations’ – ‘Silvaticus // Sunrise’
- Jan 2021: Dance / Film Collab with Jana Castillo (AUS) & Sinéad McDevitt (IRE)
- Jan 2021: Successfully crowd-funded to have ‘Collaborations’ pressed to Vinyl
- Dec 2020: ‘Collaborations’ named Irish Album of the year by Broadsheet.ie
- Dec 2020: No More Workhorse – A Year in Music – 2020 – Úna Keane
- Nov 2020: ‘Collaborations’ Album Review: Hot Press 8.5/10
- Nov 2020: ‘Collaborations’ Album Review: The Irish Times ****
- Nov 2020: Hot Press premiere video for ‘Hollow’ >>
- Nov 2020: Lauren Murphy on new live album ‘Collaborations’ for entertainment.ie
- Nov 2020: Nialler9 premieres new single ‘Hollow’
- Sept 2020: Single Ebb released for Culture Night. Named ‘Tune of the Week’ by RTE Culture
You can listen to Úna's music on Spotify. If you'd like to listen + invest in her music, BANDCAMP is the place x
// D I S C O G R A P H Y // Composition / Instrumental:
- Silvaticus // Sunrise (2021, Single)
- Hollow (2020, Single)
- Collaborations (2020, Live Album)
- Ebb (2020, Single)
- In the Deep (2019, Studio Album)
- As I Wake, Still I Dream (2017, Studio Album)
Singer / Songwriter:
- Trees (2010, Studio Album)
- Saya Nova (2004, EP)
- Hiraeth (2022, Feature, Pre-production, Dir: Michael Smiley)
- La Petite Mort (2019, Short, Dir: Michael Smiley). Short-listed at Galway International Film Fleadh & Film Festa Roma
- Ongoing: Work on a series of Visuals collated from the Prelinger Archives in San Francisco to accompany Single releases for her 3 instrumental albums to date