Big Country will release their brand new studio album, ‘The Journey’ as they embark on a 14-date tour of the UK this April. Released on Cherry Red Records on 8th April, this is Big Country’s ninth studio album and their first since the sad and untimely death of lead singer and songwriter, Stuart Adamson in December 2001.
Recorded on the Welsh border town of Wrexham in an old cold war nuclear bunker, with 8-feet thick walls and no phone or internet signal, group members found themselves isolated and disconnected from the outside world, allowing for an interesting and productive time in the studio.
Aptly titled, ‘The Journey’ is released some two years after Big Country embarked on a new era, when guitarist and founder member Bruce Watson officially invited Mike Peters (The Alarm) to join them as lead vocalist for two concerts to celebrate 30 years since the group’s formation. Two years of intense and emotional touring followed and as diehard followers and critics alike responded positively and a whole new generation of fans were created, the group, imbued with new energy and passion, performed at many of the UK and Europe’s most prestigious festivals, including Isle of Wight, V, T In The Park and Oxygen.
More recently, Big Country has been joined by another long-standing friend of the group, Derek Forbes (Simple Minds), who took over bass guitar duties from original bassist Tony Butler who retired gracefully in 2012. Derek was recently voted Best Scottish Bass Player of all time and, in the words of Tony Butler himself “plays a mean D”.
Mike Peters has had a long and heartfelt association with Big Country. He first met Stuart Adamson in 1983 and was with him at his last ever Big Country show at Glasgow’s Barrowlands in 2000. Mike, who has fought and won two very public battles with cancer, also credits the words of In A Big Country as literally inspiring him to “Stay Alive” during his illnesses.
Mike wrote 99% of the lyrics for The Journey, a challenge he accepted in the knowledge that it would mean having to look into the soul of the band’s original lyricist, Stuart Adamson, whose words revealed someone who was at once both positive and pessimistic. Moreover, Mike realised the importance of following the formula for all of the great Big Country songs, which started life as instrumentals; a guitar phrase from founder member Bruce Watson or a drum break and piano melody by Mark Brzezicki, with lyrics and vocal melody coming after the music had been created by the band as a unit.
“There are themes of redemption and of coming to terms with a life lived all through this record, and the process has brought us together as a family united and ready to stand proud for what and who we are…..Big Country.” (Mike Peters)
“I am looking forward to the next Big Country chapter…. it feels right and fitting that Big Country continue the journey… and as Stuart always said, “When taking a journey, it’s not about the getting there, it’s enjoying the view on the way” (Mark Brzezicki)
CHERRY RED RECORDS
8TH APRIL 2013
FRI 12 GLASGOW, ABC
SAT 13 ABERDEEN, LEMON TREE
SUN 14 NEWCASTLE, O2 ACADEMY
TUE 16 LIVERPOOL, O2 ACADEMY
THU 18 SHEFFIELD, CORPORATION
FRI 19 MANCHESTER, THE RITZ
SAT 20 SOUTHAMPTON, UNIVERSITY
SUN 21 LONDON, THE FORUM
MON 23 CARDIFF, GREAT HALL
TUE 24 WOLVERHAMPTON, WULFRUN HALL
WED 25 NORWICH, WATERFRONT
THU 26 READING, SUB 89
FRI 27 DUBLIN, THE ACADEMY
SAT 28 BELFAST, LIMELIGHT 1