Brother & Bones are five men that write songs with the artistry of Folk troubadours, the energy of punks and the self-belief of stadium headliners. Hailing from Cornwall, their acoustic-led, alternative rock sound tips its hat to the likes of Pearl Jam and John Martyn.
Not only have the band been followed across UK and Europe on their own headline shows, they have also opened for BRIT Award winners Ben Howard + Bastille.
The autumn season looks set to be big for the powerhouse rock band with an exciting schedule of live dates confirmed and release of their debut album on 28th August. Recorded at the prestigious East West Studios in Los Angeles, California, the début album is an eclectic sound clash of tribal drumming and crushing guitars, which comes highly anticipated by their multitude of loyal fans.
Alex from the band answers questions from Andy Howells.
Who are you and how did you come together?
Hi! We are Rich, Robin, Alex, James and Yiannis.. We all met at music collage essentially. Rich and Rob had known each other for years as they’re both from Cornwall, where everyone seems to know each other! The rest of us all teamed up in the town of Guildford around 5 years ago.
Where are you from?
Well as mentioned Rich and Rob come from the St Ives area of Cornwall, as such we spend a lot of time down there and it always feels like a bit of a homecoming when we play there. Me (Alex), I’m from Leeds up’t North while James is from Kent and Yiannis South London.
How would you describe your music style?
We actually struggle to describe it and we’ve had some pretty out there descriptions over the years, these range from ‘war folk’ to ‘Mumford and sons on acid’! Our influences vary from John Martyn & Bob Dylan to Led Zeppelin & Pearl Jam. Fundamentally we have two drummers giving us a really heavy backbone and bass, electric guitar, acoustic guitar and Rich’s voice are left to compete for the leftover space! It’s a very dynamic show too which goes from some very bare, delicate, folky moments to some pretty face melting rock out sections.
What’s been your best live experience?
We’ve had some pretty special moments on stage, one particular highlight was being invited out to Colorado 2 years running to play a festival 9000ft up in a small town in the mountains. You have this incredible view from the stage coupled with a really warm crowd meant that was pretty great.
You have your début album coming soon can you tell us more about that?
Yes we were fortunate enough to be able to record out in LA with a producer named Billy Bush who had worked with Garbage, Muse, Snow Patrol and a load of other people and we were in an amazing studio space where loads of Rock acts like Rage Against the Machine and the Chillis had recorded so it was hard not to be overawed by the situation! It’s self titled, out on the 28th August and we’re really happy with how it’s turned out. It’s quite raw and visceral. Sometimes it feels like acts and artists are either tasked with recreating the impression of a record in their live show or on the other side recreating the impression of a live show on their record. We’re definitely in the latter camp!
You’re touring shortly are you looking forward to that?
We’ve cut our teeth on the road and feel very at home with that life so yes, we can’t wait! It’s been a while since we’ve gone out and done a headline tour and got the team together so I’m really looking forward to it. We spend a lot of time together already as a band but live we have a tour manager, photographer and often videographer who are all good mates and part of the team and often have other friends coming with us to help with merchandise and general morale so I can’t wait to get the crew back together!
What can people expect from your forthcoming Bristol gig?
We expend a lot of energy into our shows and relish every moment we get to spend on stage so expect 5 very sweaty men by the end of it! The show goes from crushingly loud to very soft so it’s quite a roller coaster. And if we get a spare minute after sound-check I’m sure we’ll find ourselves squeezing in a couple of local ciders at the apple before the show to loosen up!
Where can people hear your music?
The Internet! Our website www.brotherandbones.com is where we sell CD’s and vinyl and other bits and we’re obviously on YouTube, iTunes, Spotify and you can always get in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
- Brother & Bones play Bristol Exchange on September 16.
- A version of this Q&A with Brother & Bones by Andy Howells appeared in The South Wales Argus entertainment supplement The Guide on August 21, 2015