Will Varley will be releasing his latest studio album – his fifth – on February the 9th – which will coincide with his biggest headlining gig to date as he brings his ten date tour to a crescendo at the Shepherds Bush Empire. The new album, Spirit of Minnie, marks a distinct change of direction for the singer songwriter, being the first time he has recorded with a full backing band. This gives him an expanded musical palette, but he’s not abandoning his gift for painterly, affirming and immediate lyric writing. No – it’s just that having been lifted by pedal steel, violins, piano, he’s brought a new vividness to his music – like seeing things in colour for the first time.
The tour is a big step up on previous solo outings – sure he’s played big rooms before supporting the likes of The Proclaimers and Billy Bragg, but after a sold-out London Union Chapel headline last November, which was a hair-raising and triumphant show for Will Varley, the time is ripe for bigger rooms for his new bigger sound. It all makes sense.
30 January BIRMINGHAM 02 Institute 3
31 January NOTTINGHAM Rescue Rooms
1 February LEEDS Brudenell Social Club
2 February EDINBURGH La Belle Angele
3 February MANCHESTER Club Academy
6 February SOUTHAMPTON 1865
7 February CARDIFF The Globe
8 February BRISTOL Trinity Centre
9 February LONDON Shepherds Bush Empire