The Cold Stares – UK Tour chat

The Cold Stares from Indiania hit the UK very soon in support of their Heavy Shoes album…

We managed a few words with the Chris Tapps and Brian Mullins as they were licking their lips in anticipation of finally reaching the UK and showing off the new music on stage. First off, Heavy Sheos feels quite apts so as with all the rubbish that’s gone down of late it’s good to hear they’re “Doing great considering, and yes- Heavy Shoes now seems to be the soundtrack for a world in chaos.…” along with a “thank you very much. We’ll take that, and I think that sums up who we try to be as a band,” when we confess our admiration for the Heavy Shoes album (link to review) – we called it “very raw, very rootsy…unfiltered blues rock” – so it’sgood to hear we got it right!

We asked what it was like doing Heavy Shoes in the world-famous Sam Phillips studio and of the band picked up any inspirational (or otherwise…) vibes. “It was amazing, such history there and inspiration,” they say. “Jerry Lee Lewis’s gunshot hole in the wall behind me recording, Brian sitting in Elvis’s seat upstairs, and me recording vocals with Howling Wolf’s old microphone. You are certainly reminded of the history and that reminder is great for trying to achieve something that belongs with the greats.”

Looking at how Heavy Shoes sits within The Cold Stares recorded legacy now it’s had time to get into the world and breath we’re told: “They are all children, and really represent the time period they were recorded.’ Not surprisingly, “Heavy Shoes will always be the pandemic record I think, but behind the doom and gloom there are plenty of notes of overcoming in there as well. We’re very proud of the album and some of those songs will always be favorites.”

There seems to be a bit of an upsurge in interest in the blues/rock genre – we’re thinking of bands and musicians like Rival Sons, Eric Gales (who we’ve witnessed live recently) and Mudlow (a fave band of ours) as well as the more mainstream rock bands tapping into the genre. “I think an uptick in guitar playing during the pandemic has certainly helped,” they admit when asked about the profile of the genre right now, and “ we also think people are looking back now and saying…, ok, over the last 10 decades what music really stands up. I think blues rock of the 60’s and 70’s really came from an honest place and that keeps it relevant. We play what we play, and are who we are despite any current fashions, but it’s great to see folks coming back around to real rock and blues.

So the band are set to head to the UK in a week or so – the first date is our local one too, in Manchester, which is also the ‘return to the road’ …not counting the wonderfully named Handy Blues & Barbeque Festival in Kentucky. Maybe every town should have one of those…. “We are actually looking forward to it a lot. First of all because we’ve never been to the UK. Secondly, the last couple tours had 7-8 hour drives between gigs at times, so the size of the UK is nice because gigs are a couple hours apart. And, the majority of our influences come from the UK.

So with gas prices, inflation, Brian been dealing with recovery of a broken foot and still on crutches. There’s a lot to deal with logistically –But it’s what you do, and you find a way to make it happen if it’s what you love. And with Bryce Klueh on bass who’s amazing, it’s opened up a world of possibilities for the band and the next album.

There’s even a day off on the tour so we might find the guys taking in “History! Sight see! Photography! Fish and chips?…. ” but most of all, “Looking forward to seeing it all, but more than anything looking forward to seeing the fans in the UK that have been asking and patiently waiting to see us for so long.

Here’s Prosecution Blues:

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