London blues strategists MIRACULOUS MULE are back with a new single and video and news of a new album.
‘O Death’ is a traditional song made famous by bluegrass pioneer Ralph Stanley. Lead vocals are handled by returning singer Alex Louise Petty who featured in the band’s original line-up. The track is backed on the double-A-side single by another traditional song ‘John The Revelator’.
Both tracks feature on the band’s new album Old Bones, New Fire, which is out on 12 August through Lightning Archive. It’s the long-awaited follow-up to 2017’s acclaimed Two Tonne Testimony.
“We had a vague plan to put on some kind of special hometown show to mark the 10th anniversary of our first gig back in 2010 but the pandemic had other ideas,” explains founding guitarist and co-vocalist Michael J Sheehy. “While going through an old hard drive trying to clear space to record new music, I found some monitor mixes of a live session we recorded during sessions for what would become our first album Deep Fried and these performances kind of blew me away. I shared them with the band and we decided to record some more material in a similar vein to create an album. As soon as restrictions lifted, we got together in a room and something magical happened.”
Speaking of ‘O Death’, Petty adds, “Michael played me Vera Hall’s version of the song back at the beginning of the band, and while we can’t improve upon these old recordings, we can find our own way into the songs. Like many a great folk song, ‘O Death’ will always find its place in any era.”
The video is the work of Swiss artist Stéphanie Cousins.
Old Bones, New Fire is available to pre-order here.
The band have just announced a very special launch gig for the album on Sunday 14 August at the ornate Fitzrovia Chapel in London’s West End. Tickets are on sale here.
Pic by Marc Blackie