Release single ‘Is Ainm Dom’

Alt folk band Moxie release single ‘Is Ainm Dom’ on 21st May, the first single to be taken from their upcoming album The Dawn of Motion, on the way later this summer. Moxie’s sound is a charismatic fusion of varied influences, emblematic of the multicultural society we live in. ‘Is Ainm Dom’ innovatively combines both Irish and Arabic in the lyrics, and the music reflects a traditional Irish roar with a driving African percussive sound.

‘Is Ainm Dom’ was born in an unexpected way: Julia Spanu and Darren Roche wanted to pay homage to each other’s cultures by combining intricate African rhythms with the Irish jig. The weaving of Irish and Arabic felt natural and almost inevitable due to some of the phonetic similarities. The song relates to the meaning of home and the importance of the journey that guides us through sunshine and storms. ‘Esmi Hayat’ – ‘Saol Is Ainm Dom’ meaning ‘Life is my name’. 

Moxie began its journey in 2011, when founding members Darren Roche, Jos Kelly, Cillian Doheny and Ted Kelly decided to join forces to create an innovative style of Irish music. They released their debut album Planted in 2014 which Trad Connect reviewed as ‘a thought provoking and modern album that is high on creativity’. Josh Sampson (drums) joined the band in 2017, with the last and most recent member being Julia Spanu, a vocalist and songwriter with French, Vietnamese and Italian roots.

Julia grew up in the historical city of Carthage, Tunisia, where she learned the Arabic language and immersed herself in Tunisian culture. She found her passion in music, song and dance, which led her to join Moxie when she moved to Ireland in 2016. Julia’s varied background and curiosity in folklore have opened up a new chapter in Moxie’s story.

Moxie has travelled the world, including a state visit to Vietnam, folk festivals in Scotland, the US, and Australia, and tours in Europe and Canada. At home, they have played festivals including Body and Soul, and Electric Picnic, and were invited by President Michael D. Higgins to entertain German president Joachim Gauck in Áras an Uachtaráin in 2015. The Irish Times has described the band as having ‘irresistible revolutionary energy’, and The Irish Examiner said that ‘Moxie is the music of a new era, where fluidity, cross-pollination, and innovation are the future and salvation of Irish music.’

Moxie’s sound is traditional Irish music reinvented for a new era: they take their inspiration from rural music and urbanise it, using traditional instruments and technology to create new sounds. Their passion lies in exploring how far the boundaries of traditional Irish music can be pushed, in creative and imaginative ways. The writing process within the band is a cohesive marriage of styles and influences, with colourful arrangements and subtle melodies, and the result may be unorthodox, even unprecedented, but it works.

‘Is Ainm Dom’ is taken from album, The Dawn of Motion, recorded at Camden Studios, Dublin in January 2020. Moxie chose Jake Birch to produce the record who is based in Montana, USA, (Carly Rae Jepsen, Theo Katzman). Alex Borwick (Ellie Goulding, George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, Jack L) was the invaluable studio engineer during the recording process, and Jean-Christophe Morel, who lives in Bordeaux, layered it with radiant string lines. 

Moxie can’t wait to introduce this album to the world, and it starts with ‘Is Ainm Dom’.