Press Reviews

Reviews for self-titled second album

“there’s little doubt that Master & Dog have staked a claim on their new sound – and on the strength of this, they have what it takes to make their new name their own too.” 8 out of 10

“Irish album of the year? Quite possibly. Put simply, this is essential listening”. 4 out of 5


“the sound of musicians set free from preconceptions….enough bite to make you feel the pain” 3 out of 5

Reviews For Dinosaur

” Long May You Reign is sublime, but this band are so much more than one track, as the album proves! John, Shelly & the Creatures are a band you really need to see live”.

“The fact is that songs such as Cold War, Sunny Side Street, Sight of Your Chest, Killer, Frost and Long May You Reign do what really good songs should: sneak up on you, twist preconceptions, change your mind and then take it over. The range of instruments in use, including flugelhorn, mandolin, cello, viola, violin, glockenspiel and xylophone, indicates not so much an everything-and-the-kitchen-sink approach (which would usually be the case) but an exceptional grasp of texture, tone and theme. A shoe-in for next year’s Choice Music Prize nominations list?”

The Irish Times(Tony Clayton-Lea)

“Excellent first album – with a dazzling array of instruments and songwriting that has been fine-tuned to a striking degree, the foursome’s laidback sound, coupled with gritty lyrics, recalls The Lemonheads. Long May You Reign has attracted some attention – it’s the song from the Discover N Ireland TV ad campaign – but there’s plenty of tunes just as catchy. Sunny Side Street and Cold War will have you humming their melodies by third listen.”

Irish Independent (Day & Night)

“It opens with ‘Blinded and Cross’ with an intro that manages to be both distorted and melodic. Combining the simplicity of a solo mandolin and both hoarse and harmonious vocals, it’s a good indicator of what to expect from the rest of the album. Dinosaur is a collection of contradictions that on paper might suggest a jarring mess, but in reality flows along effortlessly, irrespective of its varied genres and broad range of instruments.
This debut serves to further validate JSC’s place in State’s Faces of 2010, expect to see and hear a lot more from these guys. John, Shelly and the Creatures deserve the rising hype.”

State Magazine (Amanda Kavanagh)

“An epic pop-rock song adorned with an effortlessly monumental chorus. Echoes of British Sea Power in its relentless build and needling guitars though, thematically, JSC cover more conventional ground. Still, it’s a blistering song, one that maintains a sense of intrigue whilst being immediately and powerfully engaging. B-side ‘long may you reign’ is a folksy effort, as full and crisp as a barrel stuffed with apples. Rather than Knock you off your seat with rambunctious riffs or profound ideas, this track is a graceful and tender effort redolent of autumnal walks in the park. Lovely.”

AU Magazine

“a sultry blend of pop with a dash of country thrown in for good measure..”

Tom Millett, BalconyTV

“This song [Long May You Reign] by John Shelly and the Creatures is just bloody lovely and is soundtracking a Northern Ireland tourist board Advert. There’s no better advertisement for the Belfast scene right now.”

Nialler9 (aka Nial Byrne), Irish Independent

“It’s am ambitious affair with trumpet, flugelhorn and a string quartet all in the musical mix- the band appear to be on a collision course with the big time”.


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