Nealo is a rapper cut from a different cloth. The former hardcore punk frontman quit his job as a trainee solicitor to spend his days walking dogs in Europe’s biggest urban park and writing lyrics that would, before long, set him on the path to becoming one of Ireland’s biggest hip-hop artists.
Emigration, break-ups, drug and alcohol use, the loss of friends and the death of loved ones have all been an integral part of Ireland, and of the wider world, for generations. In Nealo’s hands, they are not just lyrical themes, but also catalysts on his path to becoming the man, and the artist, that he is today.
“I was born on the first day of spring. From an early age I knew that I felt things deeply. I took losses harder than others, and carried them with me. I thought about losing people from very young. I didn’t have a morbid fascination or anything, but more so a hyper emotional reaction to everything around me. The music I listened to was always a little sadder, or a little angrier. I always carried a little too much emotion into every relationship, for better and worse,” says Nealo.
Sharing his emotions in such a raw way is something that Nealo can’t do alone. Enlisting the help of some of his closest friends - like Uly, Adam Garrett and Molly Sterling - who bring their considerable jazz chops to proceedings
His debut album, ‘All The Leaves Are Falling’, is his way of channeling as much of his emotions as he can into a piece of music. This is Nealo’s journey through the seasons of life in the form of ten tracks.