As one of the UK’s breakout artist over the last 12 months, the Kris Barras Band have had a whirlwind rise which has seen them announce that they will be playing the biggest venues they have ever headlined this October. Joining them on the headline tour, on selected dates, will be Wille & The Bandits and Elles Bailey.

Tickets available from HERE

The rise? Well, from the release of last years ‘The Divine And Dirtythere have been the; A-list radio singles, a string of sold out shows on every headline tour, playing to an audience of 2m on BBC Radio 2, touring Europe as a frontman with the legendary Billy Gibbons and Supersonic Blues Machine and the riotous festival performances. Those festival shows have included seeing them as the only band to play 3 years in a row at Ramblin’ Man Fair, rocketing from the new band stage (2017), to the Blues Stage (2018) and now to Main Stage (2019). They are also the only artist ever to have an unprecedented one in-one out performance at 2018’s Planet Rockstock Festival, which has also seen them added to 2019s Main Stage.

The Devon born Barras and his band have barely had the time to catch their breath, having a non-stop year that has also seen them zigzag the country supporting; Beth Hart, The Magpie Salute, Joanne Shaw Taylor, King King, GUN and Therapy? They capped off this with a flood of critical praise and an ever-growing fervent fan base which contributed to them winning Planet Rock Radio’s prestigious ‘2019 Best New Band’ Award.

They will be joining US Arena rockers Black Stone Cherry as main support on their upcoming July UK tour including the sold out Caerphilly Castle as well as 2019 shows with John Mayall & The Blues Breakers, Walter Trout and Jonny Lang.

“We’ve had a crazy year,” says Barras. “We went from playing to 75 people a show in early 2018, up to selling out 500 cap venues just 12 months later. This October will see us head out on our biggest UK tour to date and will coincide with the release of a brand new album. Every tour that we do, we try to raise the bar and improve as a band….I can guarantee that this one will be another step up.”

Thurs 10 Oct – Live Rooms, Chester*
Fri 11 Oct – Arlington Arts, Newbury*
Sun 13 Oct – Fleece, Bristol*
Tues 15 Oct – Robin, Bilston*
Weds 16 Oct – 1865, Southampton*
Thurs 17 Oct – Exeter Phoenix*
Fri 18 Oct – O2 Academy Islington, London**
Weds 23 Oct – Oran-Mor, Glasgow**
Thurs 24 Oct – Arc, Stockton**
Fri 25 Oct – Academy, Manchester**
Sun 27 Oct – Fibbers, York**

*Wille & The Bandits
**Elles Bailey

As one of the UK’s breakout artist over the last 12 months, the Kris Barras Band have had a whirlwind rise which has seen them announce that they will be playing the biggest venues they have ever headlined this October. Joining them on the headline tour, on selected dates, will be Wille & The Bandits and Elles Bailey.

The rise? Well, from the release of last years The Divine And Dirty’, there have been the; A-list radio singles, a string of sold out shows on every headline tour, playing to an audience of 2m on BBC Radio 2, touring Europe as a frontman with the legendary Billy Gibbons and Supersonic Blues Machine and the riotous festival performances. Those festival shows have included seeing them as the only band to play 3 years in a row at Ramblin’ Man Fair, rocketing from the new band stage (2017), to the Blues Stage (2018) and now to Main Stage (2019). They are also the only artist ever to have an unprecedented one in-one out performance at 2018s Planet Rockstock Festival, which has also seen them added to 2019s Main Stage.

The Devon born Barras and his band have barely had the time to catch their breath, having a non-stop year that has also seen them zigzag the country supporting; Beth Hart, The Magpie Salute, Joanne Shaw Taylor, King King, GUN and Therapy? They capped off this with a flood of critical praise and an ever-growing fervent fan base which contributed to them winning Planet Rock Radio’s prestigious ‘2019 Best New Band’ Award.

They will be joining US Arena rockers Black Stone Cherry as main support on their upcoming July UK tour including the sold out Caerphilly Castle as well as 2019 shows with John Mayall & The Blues Breakers, Walter Trout and Jonny Lang.

“We’ve had a crazy year,” says Barras. “We went from playing to 75 people a show in early 2018, up to selling out 500 cap venues just 12 months later. This October will see us head out on our biggest UK tour to date and will coincide with the release of a brand new album. Every tour that we do, we try to raise the bar and improve as a band….I can guarantee that this one will be another step up.”

Full UK Tour DatesTickets available fromwww.krisbarrasband.com

Tues 7 May – Portland Arms, Cambridge – TICKETS
Weds 8 May – Brudenell Social Club, Leeds – TICKETS
Sat 11 May – KKS Steel Mill, Wolverhampton w/King King – TICKETS
Tues 4 Jun – O2 Kentish Town Forum, London w/Jonny Lang & Walter Trout – TICKETS 
Sat 13 Jul – Caerphilly Castle, Wales w/Black Stone Cherry – SOLD OUT
Sun 14 Jul – Music Hall, Aberdeen w/Black Stone Cherry – TICKETS
Tues 16 Jul – Barrowland, Glasgow w/Black Stone Cherry – TICKETS
Weds 17 Jul – The Academy, Dublin w/Black Stone Cherry – TICKETS
Thurs 18 Jul – Ulster Hall, Belfast w/Black Stone Cherry – TICKETS
Fri 19 Jul – Ramblin’ Man Fair, Maidstone w/The Darkness – TICKETS
Fri 26 Jul – Rock And Blues Custom Show, Pentrich – TICKETS
Sat 5 Oct – OPEN, Norwich w/Walter Trout – TICKETS
Thurs 10 Oct – Live Rooms, Chester – TICKETS
Fri 11 Oct – Arlington Arts, Newbury – TICKETS
Sat 12 Oct – O2 Academy 2, Sheffield w/Walter Trout – TICKETS
Sun 13 Oct – Fleece, Bristol – TICKETS
Tues 15 Oct – Robin, Bilston – TICKETS
Weds 16 Oct – 1865, Southampton – TICKETS
Thurs 17 Oct – Exeter Phoenix – TICKETS
Fri 18 Oct – O2 Academy Islington, London – TICKETS
Weds 23 Oct – Oran-Mor, Glasgow – TICKETS
Thurs 24 Oct – Arc, Stockton – TICKETS
Fri 25 Oct – Academy, Manchester – TICKETS
Sun 27 Oct – Fibbers, York – TICKETS

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Elles Bailey – Whelans (Upstairs), Dublin – 07-03-2019

Review: Stephen Brophy

Photography: Stephen Brophy

Over the last couple of years Elles Bailey has become a force to be reckoned with on the Blues/Roots circuit and following on from some very hard work promoting and Touring her debut album ‘Wildfire‘, she is making a trip to my home town, Dublin,  in order to promote the follow up, the superb ‘Road I Call Home‘ and play her first headlining Irish date.

Opening the show this evening is Northern Irish Blues singer/songwriter Dom Martin, who plays a really good and gritty set. Prior to Dom hitting the stage though we get another insight into Elles Bailey, it is not very often in this day and age you will see a Headline act introduce their support for the night to the crowd, a very classy thing to do and generates a really cool atmosphere to kick things off. The songs are really good and the guitar playing even better, just creating a very nice sound, although the crowd at this stage of the evening was small they were certainly enjoying Dom’s set and that was very understandable. With songs from last years ‘Easy Way Out‘ EP, and probably the highlight being ‘The Rain Game‘, he certainly picked up some new followers tonight. Tracks like ‘Mercy‘ sounded great in an all too short set, always a great sign when a set flies by and you want to hear more.

Then it was onto the main event of the evening, for me I’d first seen Elles supporting Jo Harman in the Jazz Club in London, and I was hooked, not just from the music and delivery, but there’s an extremely engaging persona on stage, and the between song banter makes you feel a lot more involved in the show than perhaps with other artists. The band are extremely good, and the sound is great for a small room. The majority of the new songs were written in Nashville, some with renowned songwriters likes Bobby Wood and Dan Auerbach, and the fruits of this process are once again evident when you hear these songs live, just take the new single ‘Little Piece Of Heaven‘, it’s a cracker of a song, and is uplifting live. Plenty of highlights in tonights set ‘Deeper‘, ‘What’s The Matter With You‘ and ‘Medicine Man‘ from the new album and the title track of the debut ‘Wildfire‘ wonderful stuff. The musicians in this band all play a significant part in the show, and gel so well, but special mention has to go to Will Edmunds on guitar, who although spending the entire set in almost total darkness played beautifully, had there been one more light directed in the right direction it would have made a big difference, but he still made his presence felt.

When reviewing Elles new album I had picked out the closing track ‘Light In The Distance‘ as being one of the highlights of the release, but at the time did not know the back story from it, and as Elles told the crowd it elevated the song even more, this particular track, one that was written closer to home has a very personal feel to it but when you hear Elles singing it you automatically associate with the sentiments, it’s a piece of beauty especially with the keyboards and vocal powering through.

As Elles star continues to shine brighter this . This was for me always going to be ones of those “wow, I was there nights” I don’t think we are likely to see this artist again in venues like this for long, and as good as it is to be so close up and personal, you know that her music deserves to be heard by a wider audience. Can’t wait to to see Elles again and the pieces of magic from the album are even more magical live, go see these shows if you can.

Setlist –

Wild Wild West

Miss Me When I’m Gone

Deeper

What’s The Matter With You

Little Piece Of Heaven

Wildfire

When I Go Away

Perfect Storm

Light In The Distance

Hell Or Highwater

Medicine Man

Woman Like Me

Help Somebody

Road I Call Home

Howlin Wolf

Encore

Girl Who Owned The Blues

Review: Elles Bailey – Road I Call Home

Release Date: (March 7th 2019)

Reviewer: Stephen Brophy

Elles Bailey has been a growing force in recent times and with the release of her second album ‘Road I Call Home‘ that’s definitely going to continue. Following on from the critically acclaimed and very successful debut album ‘Wildfire‘ which was released towards the end of 2017, Elles is set to capitalise on the momentum that a really good debut and some very hard work touring has built up.

The music on this release continues in the same vein as what we have heard previously, but there’s an assured confidence flowing through this release that just pushes the songs to new levels, although this may be a very personal group of songs there are themes that resonate with us all and it’s the execution that makes everything shine so well. Style wise we’ve got an amalgamation of Blues, Americana and Country dripping all over this one

This is most definitely an album you need to let seep into your pores, soak in it, breathe it in, tracks like ‘Deeper‘ just beg to be put on repeat and allow you to pick up on different nuances with each listen. As with it’s predecessor this was recorded in Nashville, and has been sympathetically produced by Brad Nowell and Steve Blackmon, which suits the style and delivery of the songs.

Of the eleven tracks on offer here you find it hard to look past any one track, there are so many reasons to keep listening and to come back for more. What raises this album above the rest is probably the fact that it so smoothly rolls from one style to another and yet neither loses focus nor the beautiful ebb and flow from song to song. ‘Help Somebody‘ stuck in my head from the first listen, a bluesy beast lifted by a Brass section that’s in no way overpowering, there are pieces of magic everywhere you turn, and the playing is exemplary whether from the special guests in Nashville or the UK musicians.

There’s an almost visible pain in ‘What’s The Matter With You‘, while ‘Little Piece Of Heaven‘ is another that wraps around your heart and pulls on the strings hard and is probably the most poppy track on offer while remaining very soulful at the same time, the writing credits are great to see but really mean very little without the excellent delivery of the stories. Then we come to the closing track ‘Light In The Distance‘ and just wow, a stunning performance in it’s simplicity, a vocal with piano accompaniment, but the vocal is so beautiful, like a winding river it meanders through a story, it’s a testament as to how far this young artist has come in a relatively short space of time.

This is a wonderful album, it’s full of depth, warmth and just really well put together songs that demand your attention. Keep your eyes and ears open for Elles Bailey, it’s a name that I’m sure you will hear a lot more of in the future. The Uk/Irl Tour starts at the beginning of March, don’t miss out on the opportunity to hear these songs live, it will be a great experience. The World better be ready for Elles because she is definitely coming for it.