The good news? Big Country is re-uniting…
The reconfigured Big Country — with The Alarm’s Mike Peters filling in for the late Stuart Adamson and the new addition of original Simple Minds bassist Derek Forbes — will release its first new studio album in 14 years this spring and embark on a world tour that will hit the U.K., Europe and North America.
The band — also featuring guitarist Bruce Watson and drummer Mark Brzezicki, plus Watson’s son Jamie on guitar as well — has announced that the 12-track The Journey is recorded, mixed and mastered and due to be released sometime this spring. No further details about the album, the band’s first since 1999′s Driving to Damascus, have been revealed.
The bad news? Tony Butler isn’t part of the project. Big Country’s marquee memorable element was the ingenious guitar interplay between Adamson and Watson – but more subtly, the subdued vocal harmony between Adamson and Butler set the Scottish band apart from many lesser guitar-driven post-punk bands of the era.
The “Maybe Good, Maybe Bad, and I’ll Decide When I Hear It” news? The bombastic, hyperbolic, prancing, posturing, preening Mike Peters fit in wonderfully with The Alarm, which was a gloriously bombastic, hyperbolic, prancing, posturing, preening band. Big Country, behind all the bagpipe-y guitars and celtic imagery, was a very measured, controlled, “Type A” band. Having Peters singing in Big Country’s old stuff is like having Steven Tyler sit in with Simon and Garfunkel.
But then it’s a new band, with only Watson and Brzezicki back from the original lineup. So here’s to clean slates. And – maybe – they’re coming to the US:
Big Country is due to open its previously announced 14-date tour of the U.K. and Ireland on April 12, and will follow that with a just-announced European tour that opens May 14 in France (see full dates below). The band says U.S. and Canadian dates are “to be announced shortly,” and that further European dates are planned for later in 2013.
Will I go if they come to the Twin Cities, Madison or Chicago?
Hell yeah. It’ll either be a great night, or an epic train wreck. I’m up for either, but I’ll hope for “great night”; dreams, as they say, stay with you.