Cambridgeshire folk-rockers Straw Bear have had a thrilling breakthrough year: clocking up a session on BBC 6 Music; selected as one of Clash Magazine‘s highlights of The Great Escape music showcase; breathless reviews from major magazines; and scoring national BBC radio play on the UK’s biggest and most influential shows.
To round off their 2013, their third single, The Land Witch, arrives – and they really have saved their best song for last…
Stream The Land Witch:
Gorgeous live studio video:
It’s a deeply lovely, chiming and soaring ode to youth and fear – all channelled through gorgeous, chiming folk tunes woven around singer Ian Ray’s pristine vocals… it’s a song that really does justify all the attention that’s been heaped on them.
STRAW BEAR – The Land Witch
A deeply lovely, chiming and soaring ode to youthful fears, The Land Witch showcases all that is wonderful about Straw Bear.
Their knack for weaving Ian Ray’s gloriously emotive vocals in and out of their gleaming, singular folk-rock is unsurpassed by few and adored by many -– and as the song reaches its shimmering, foggy climax, you’ll wonder if they might just be one of the best new bands of the year.
Said singer Ian of the song’s curious title: “I was in the back of my nan’s car as a kid, and I swear she told my dad that a “land witch” lived in the woods near her house… I sincerely believed that some weird old crone would abduct me if I went too close to the trees. Only years later did I realise I misheard her and made the whole thing up.”
It’s been a year of terrific success and exposure for Straw Bear, which began with a terrific BBC 6 Music session for Tom Robinson.
Next, revered music magazine Clash picked them as one of their select handful of highlights from The Great Escape music conference, where they played the BBC Introducing stage –- and this was swiftly followed by superlative-laden reviews in national music magazines R2 and Sound On Sound.
A long, illustrious list of the UK’s top national DJs have backed the band too, including Bob Harris, Huw Stephens, Tom Robinson, Jen Long & Ally McCrae, Dermot O’Leary, Gideon Coe, Chris Hawkins and Gary Crowley – whilst a glut of key influencing music blogs have heaped praise on their songs too.
The song is drawn from their debut LP Black Bank, an album that has drawn rave reviews from some of the most revered sources.
“When I say that Straw Bear’s album is quite possibly the best thing I have ever reviewed in these pages, be assured that I bloody well mean it.” – Sam Inglis, Sound On Sound Magazine
“…everything here –- the quirky, insightful and intelligent lyrics, lovely relaxed playing, the melodies and sly vocals -– indicates a singular talent… these musicians are made for each other and what they produce is some of the freshest, seminal songs of 2013.”