So, Songs of Praise was here again and this time it was all a bit of a folk-trip. The main act was Bateleurs, who are a great folk meets country, rootsy type band that manage to throw just enough pop melody into their song writing to make them memorable and accessible. Also on the bill was my good friend Billyjon, performing his emotive balladry solo for a change but sounding more confident that ever. Always a pleasure.
The main reason for this diary entry though is to talk about opening act Kubris, a band that just blew me away. I had heard their mini album a while ago when I was sent it as a review item and although I loved it didn’t prepare me for just how good they actually are as a live act. Although they look like a folk act, acoustic guitars, cello, extra harmony vocals, they come across as like a heavy rock band, and it is this interplay between the full on deliveries and the ability to strip things back to haunting minimalism that creates their sound dynamic. At a turn the music was atmospheric, byzantine heavy, emotive, angry, passionate, cinematic, pastoral and engaging. What more could you ask for? Nothing.
Well, actually it would have been nice if we’d had more in than the 10 or so people who shown up. But I guess most people were busy at home on various internet sites moaning about how Simon Cowell is killing music or just reeling out the usual boring line about how there are no decent bands playing Swindon.