Varley will be playing his biggest show to date next autumn at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire on 25 November 2017. Tickets go on sale today. Tickets here.
Speaking about the show, Will says: "I used to play an open mic night across the road from Shepherds Bush Empire. I never thought years later I'd be headlining there.”
His headline show at London’s Union Chapel later this month on 18 November sold out over a month in advance. Will Varley UK & Ireland headline tour dates can be found on our gigs listings page.
The songs on ‘Kingsdown Sundown’ are more visceral and uneasy than before, with fights in KFC descending into world wars, the all too real plight of refugees and the recent rise in hate crime. A collection of folk songs written over the course of the last year while travelling and touring – written on tour buses and trains, scribbled on the back of set lists and receipts – Will says “these are the most honest songs I've ever written and they represent new ground for me creatively. They may not be radio friendly, or even 'friendly' at all, but I’ve been wanting to make a record like this for a long time."
First track to be lifted from the album ‘To Build A Wall’ – an unnervingly timely indictment of simplistic solutions to incredible complex problems on both sides of the pond – has been added to the Radio X Evening Playlist and is receiving plays and support from Steve Lamacq on 6Music. Watch the simple but provocative video here:
The rest of the album is hazier, more spectral and a phantom of memories, dreams, and hopes. If there's one song that haunts as much as it heals and warms the soul, it's 'Let Your Guard Down' which sounds like it was sung deeply into the howling wind in defiance, in hope and fear. The most directly political song 'We Want Our Planet Back' feels strongly enough to strap on an electric guitar and strum over Will's patient protest, but it indirectly lends its brooding power to 'Too Late Too Soon' which seems ready to crumple and break, a sandcastle made of a simmering mood. 'Back To Hell' could have come from any period in superstitious folk history, a tale of vague menace, mysticism and the underworld. Finally, 'We'll Keep Making Plans' threatens to build to a crescendo, but instead lets us drift out into a mental sea where the sun is setting on what we knew in favour of the unknown, resolving to carry on, continuing to build our futures on shakier foundations. It’s somehow not dispiriting; it’s more driven by determination to allow sadness not to rule our lives, but be an important part of it.
‘Kingsdown Sundown’ Tracklisting:
1. To Build A Wall
2. Something Is Breaking
3. When She Wakes Up
4. February Snow
5. Let Your Guard Down
6. We Want Our Planet Back
7. Too Late Too Soon
8. Wild Bird
9. Back To Hell
10. One Last Look At The View
11. We’ll Keep Making Plans