Cathal Coughlan of Microdisney and Fatima Mansions, RIP
Sad news: Cathal Coughlan, who led Microdisney in the '80s and Fatima Mansions in the '90s, has died. The Guardian reports that his family confirmed his death, saying he "slipped away peacefully in hospital after a long illness." He was 61.
Microdisney formed in Cork, Ireland in 1980, and were a unique mix of guitarist Sean O'Hagan's delicate guitar-playing and Coughlan's one-of-a-kind voice. Their 1985 album The Clock Comes Down The Stairs reached #1 on the UK indie charts. The band broke up in 1988, with O'Hagan forming The High Llamas and Coughlan starting the decidedly more aggressive-sounding Fatima Mansions. That band scored a Top 10 hit in the UK in 1992 with their out-there cover of Bryan Adams mammoth single "Everything I Do, I Do It For You."
Coughlan started his solo career when Fatima Mansions split up in 1996, and he released Songs of Co-Aklan last year, which featured appearances from Sean O'Hagan, The Auteurs' Luke Haines and more. Microdisney reformed for a few shows in 2018.
Rest in peace, Cathal. Watch videos by Microdisney, Fatima Mansions and more, and read tributes from O'Hagan, Tracey Thorn, and more, below.