Posted on by Oran

If you’re looking for an example of how rich the underground Irish Rock/Alternative scene is, it won’t take you long to stumble across Portlaois natives, Vendetta Love. 

Vendetta Love – Down The Barrel Photography 2021

The four-piece are gearing up for what will be their most strategic push to break out into new pastures and what better way to start but with a pounding new video for their recently-released single, ‘Witches & Thieves’.

Punchy, raw, and loaded with unbridled talent, Vendetta Love are truly on a quest to prove that good honest, Hard Rock is far from passing its sell-by date. We’re looking at you Gene Simmons!!!

Their new single, ‘Witches & Thieves‘ has been picked up by a whole host of radio stations across the UK, and mainland Europe, yet again, sparking interest in Ireland’s flourishing underground music scene.

Check out the official video for ‘Witches & Thieves‘ below:

Overdrive caught up with founding member, frontman/guitarist, Shawn Namaste to shed some light on the bands’ background, their new single, UK Tour next year, and their plans for 2022…

OD – For those that don’t know tell us a brief history of the band?

SHAWN – We started in 2015. Myself and Darren [drums] had known each other for years so when we decided to get together and make some noise, we just clicked. There was a guy we knew who played bass with us for a little while, but we really became Vendetta Love when Neil [bass] joined at the start of 2016.

We spent a long time doing the gig circuit in Ireland, recording some demos, live recordings, etc. but then we went pretty quiet, for about a year, until Chris [guitars]came on board.

We’ve known him for years too. When he hooked up with us, the sound and energy he brought to the band was exactly what we needed. Having 2 guitars in a guitar-driven band just completely opens up the soundscape. We’ve not looked back since. Our 1st official 4-piece gig was with The Courtesans in June 2018, and our last was the week before lockdown hit.

Down The Barrel Photography

Ironically, lockdown has probably been the most progressive time for us as a band. We’ve got a lot coming out and a lot going on in a relatively short space of time, so we’re just looking forward to the next chapter and seeing where that takes us.

OD – This is the first single from the forthcoming EP, would you agree that ‘Witches & Thieves’ is a good indication of what to expect from the EP?

SHAWN – I would say it probably is yeah. Loud, raw, in your face.. ‘Witches…‘ is the brightest song on there, the punchiest and the shortest. But it shares that raw-ness with the rest of the EP for sure.

OD – With regards to the single, tell us about the concept behind the lyrics?

SHAWN – To me, it’s about feeling like a 21st-century heretic for some of the shit I do, or believe, or whatever, and owning it. Some things that would’ve got me burned at a stake not too long ago, or committed.

I guess, it’s about being true to that weird, fucky [sic] part of you that we all have. Whatever that may be. Because that’s the little spark that’s gonna help you find all your kindred heretics. It has for me, anyway. And I guess the song is a celebration of that.

OD – The bands’ sound has been linked to that of Alice In Chains, Stone Temple Pilots, etc. Is this something that you set out to do, or is this just the natural sound that happened when you all got together to write?

SHAWN – It’s definitely not intentional, I think it’s just our influences coming through us when we write. We never set out to write a particular way or anything, it just kinda happens. We’re huge fans of both of those bands also,  so hearing that is a pretty nice compliment.


OD – You have an extensive UK tour booked for May/June of 2022 with Harsh. Can you tell us how this came about and will it be your first time performing in the UK?

SHAWN – Yeah man, initially we were asked to open for Harsh on the Irish leg of the tour but then the offer was extended to do the full UK run by RS Band Promotions. It’s gonna be our first time to play over there.

We can’t fuckin wait, to be absolutely honest. After so long without being able to gig, to be offered the shot to do that tour, and play almost every night for a month is gonna be a real treat.

OD – Can we expect to see another single coming from the EP prior to release?

SHAWN – Yeah, we’ve got a second single coming out on September 10th. It’s called ‘Blackened Hands‘. If ‘Witches & Thieves‘ is the “Yin” of this EP, then ‘Blackened Hands‘ is the ‘Yang’. It’s much darker. More Merlot, as opposed to cans of Karpackie, if you know what I mean. [Laughing].  Also, I think that’s why we’ve chosen it as the second single. It contrasts. It’s one of my favourite songs that we’ve written.

OD – Coming from Ireland, can you give us your opinion on what is the biggest issue with underground music and what would you like to see change?

SHAWN – The biggest issue, I think, is that it just doesn’t seem to be celebrated or embraced enough by the wider population.

On one hand, I kinda like that though, cos it really is its own thing but, I mean, the underground is rumbling with fuckin sick bands that crush it every time.

The audience is there, the bands’ are there, the community is there, and… major, mainstream Ireland just fails to recognise it. Or chooses not to. I dunno, I’d like to see that change. Cos there’s so much good music here that deserves to be heard.

OD – With regards to next year, what can we expect in terms of new material?

SHAWN – Oh man, we’ve already got EP No.2 in the bag. We wrapped it up a few weeks ago. We’re fucking buzzed about it so that’s looking like it’s going to be out in Spring next year, with some singles dropping as early as February perhaps.

Then when we come back from the UK tour, we’ll be heading in to record our first album pretty much straight away, so, 2022 is looking like a busy year of releases from us bunch of hairy fuckers [laughing].

‘Witches & Thieves is out now. For more information on Vendetta Love, please visit this link.

Oran O’Beirne 2021