A very special evening indeed awaits South Gloucestershire’s music-lovers as one of the country’s most highly-rated emerging folk duos launch their debut album at the award-winning club this month.
SUTHERING (which means "the sound of the wind through the trees or wind under a birds wing”) combines the musical talents of Julu Irvine and Heg Brignall. A couple in life and in music, the duo have taken the folk scene by storm with their unusual and fresh approach to folk. Julu and Heg are true story-tellers who champion female characters, creating new narratives for women and unearthing the female heroines of folk.
What sets them apart is their wonderful chemistry and charisma on stage, natural humour and two beautifully matched voices. With an unusual mix of cascading, dramatic piano; intricate, fingerstyle guitar; flute, whistles and harmonium, Julu and Heg bring an exciting take on folk storytelling with their evocative and distinctive sound. Their arresting a cappella arrangements have been memorable favourites with audiences.
Their debut album If We Turn Away explores themes of community, connection, environment and conscience is very much a reflection of the times we are living in and has been influenced by the duo’s experiences during the pandemic. Each song is carefully crafted and arranged, telling tales of struggle and triumph against all odds; from both their own lives and from stories they have found. The album is a tonic for the divisive times we are living through. “We’re searching for light in this long, cold winter” sings the chorus of the first single Gather, which is an offering of strength and hope and is accompanied by a beautiful video filmed on Dartmoor.
Julu and Heg will be joined by Olivia Dunn on violin and Sarah Rickets on double-bass, the launch gig being the only opportunity to see this expanded lineup on their tour. The evening’s entertainment will get underway with a short set from DOM PRAG, whose music knits together British and European folk tradition, classical guitar, mining songs, unaccompanied singing, poems set to music (e.g. Keats, Larkin), compositions influenced by Schubert and Shostakovich, bluesy riffs and raw vocals.
Tickets for the event, which takes place at CHRIST CHURCH DOWNEND on Friday 18th February 2022, are available online HERE and from MELANIE'S KITCHEN in Downend (cash only). They are priced at £14 each in advance or £16 on the door. There will be a bar, stocking cider, soft drinks, wine, hot drinks and locally-brewed real ale from Hambrook-based HOP UNION BREWERY (formerly GWB). Audience members are encouraged to bring their own glass/mug/tankard/bucket, as well as reusable bottles for water, as part of the club’s drive to be more environmentally aware. There is a 50p discount for those bringing their own receptacles. We will also have fantastic cakes available on the bar, courtesy of THE GREAT CAKE COMPANY, the Radstock-based company fronted by our happily-retired former sound engineer Chris Webster.