Ian Noe brings his debut ‘Between the Country’ to the UK

One of the albums of 2019 for many people was Ian Noe’s ‘Between the Country’. Folk rocker, Ian Noe, is a former oil rig worker from East Kentucky, but he’s also something of a storytelling genius – each of his 10, self-penned songs on the record having something special to impart – many of them vignettes of small-town life and character studies, its subject matter ranging from a train crash (‘Barbara’s Song’), a bank robber on the LAM (‘Letter to Madeline’), a serial killer (‘Dead on the River’), alcoholism (‘Irene {Raving Bomb}’) and drug abuse (‘Meth Head’ and ‘Junk Town’).

If the subject matter sounds rather sombre, the undeniable beauty of his folksy stylings and sound are captivating enough to lift anyone’s mood, and there’s also light-hearted relief to be had in the song ‘If Today Doesn’t Do Me In’: “There’s a feeling you get not far from despair / that sometimes sets in on your mind / But if it’s all that you got / you still set the clock / and get up with a reason to climb.”

Although his record looked to have flown somewhat under the radar on its release at the end of May 2019, it’s been gaining positive reviews and worth of mouth ever since, and Noe has justifiably been shortlisted in the category of International Song of the Year at the Americana Music Association UK’s annual awards later this month for his song, ‘Letter to Madeline’.

The album ‘Between The Country, was recorded at Nashville’s RCA Studio A with Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb and supporting musicians including Nashville singer-songwriter Savannah Conley on backing vocals, Adam Gardner on bass and keyboards, Chris Powell on drums and percussion, while Cobb contributed himself on acoustic and electric guitar.

Ian Noe has been out on the road in recent years, as support to Son Volt, Jamestown Revival, John Prine and Blackberry Smoke. John Prine, in particular, is a particularly suitable fit seeing as Noe claims him to be his biggest influence. When asked what it was about John Prine’s music that was so inspirational, Noe said it was in his ability to take simple song subjects and conjure them into something profound. It’s a skill that Noe shares with Prine.

Noe has spent much of the past year touring the US, including shows supporting Colter Wall and Jessica Lea Mayfield, as well as performances as part of Americana Fest (US), the Folk Alliance International Conference, Holler On The Hill Festival, and more. Now his UK fans get the chance to see him at a short run of performances starting at the end of this month, with hopefully the announcement of other dates yet to come.

Ian Noe UK tour dates:

FRI 31 JAN – Sage, Gateshead
SAT 1 FEB – Saint Luke’s & The Winged Ox, Glasgow
MON 3 FEB – Omeara, London

Between the Country’ is out on the Thirty Tigers label.

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