The award-winning husband + wife blues-rock duo WHEN RIVERS MEET have released “Perfect Stranger” —the second single from their forthcoming highly anticipated third album “Aces Are High” (due to be released this summer) and ahead of their Breaker of Chains UK tour (with their special guest, Arielle.)
With rawboned rhythms, deepwater, guitar grooviness from Aaron Bond, and Grace Bond’s huskily burning voice, their distinctive sound is granulose & thrilling.
Grace’s distinctive vocal style, coupled with the grungy electric guitar, burgundy rhythms, and (on some numbers) a dizzyingly resonant mandolin, contributes to the delivery of contemporary minimalist blues rock legitimacy.
“We wanted to write a song about our relationship and how we first met,” explains WRM’s Grace. “Our relationship is intense and creative. We wanted to write a song that reflects that tension throughout.”
“Before we held back on being too rocky, but this time we allowed ourselves to create what we wanted to hear, without restricting ourselves. We also allowed ourselves to express the different colours to our music with tracks like ‘Golden’ and ‘By Your Side’, so this album has more extremes.
We still call upon our influences from all the years but remain true to ourselves to create music we love.”
“Perfect Stranger” (video shared below) has a set of squatty-bristly guitar notes, a spatter of stumplike rhythms, and, at the cardiovascular centre of this unwinding song, is Grace’s braiding, drawloom voice that evasively (perhaps even brokenly) steps forward into the light… until the awakening of their grand chorus — and this is when the piece becomes an acknowledgment of great love secured; and a declaration of transfigurative & blissful awakening.
You will adore these sounds if you enjoy simple rhythmics, resonant guitars with gritty tones, and an extraordinarily handsome, multipotent vocal. (If you liked the White Stripes’ 1999 backwoods metal & blues fusions, this is for you!)
WRM’s forthcoming album “Aces Are High” follows two critically acclaimed records: “We Fly Free” (2020), which reached No.1 in the iTunes Blues Album Chart, and “Saving Grace” (2021), which charted at No.2 in the UK Official Jazz & Blues Albums Chart, No.5 UK Official Album Downloads Chart, and No.6 UK Official Independent Albums Chart. These were based purely on chart reporting digital sales and didn’t include physical sales.
When Rivers Meet were the first band to win four awards at the UK Blues Awards 2021 and another three awards in 2022, including Blues Band Of The Year on both occasions. In 2023, WRM won Blues Band Of The Year, making them the only band to win this category three years in a row (!!) and the only band to be inducted into the UK Blues Awards Hall Of Fame for this category.
File alongside: The Revelators, Alison Mosshart, Shovels & Rope
Words by @neilmach 2023 ©
Photos by © Rob Blackham