SRF 2017: John Blek & The Rats

I’m not kidding you: it seems like they could become some kind of mascot for the Static Roots Festival: after playing the headline slot at Static Roots 2016, John Blek & the Rats will be back for next year’s festival (9 / 10 June 2017)! When we found out they were invited to play the legendary Orange Blossom Special Festival 2017 on the weekend before our festival, it simply was a total no-brainer to book them again. It’s going to be two days of music madness <3 <3 <3

“Defiantly knocking on the door of major international breakthrough with their Americana rock sound fused with perfectly crafted songs” – Evening Echo (IRL)

“Borders sees them embark on a bold, brave and, most importantly, exciting new journey. Leaving behind their more pronounced Americana influences, the album is darker in places – and they’ve grown to become a potentially stadium bothering beast. ” ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ – Hot Press Magazine

“The moment has arrived for Blek and the Rats to marshal their own aesthetic and on Borders this is revealed to be a lush marriage of Midlake, Divine Comedy, and Nick Cave. It’s carried off with verve and steely belief.” – Irish Examiner

“What IS a major surprise is that John Blek & The Rats are still unsigned at the time of writing. They are the perfect band to take a festival crowd by the scruff of the neck and their tuneful, punky brand of Americana soon curries favour with this gathering.” – Whisperin And Hollerin

“An insanely debaucherous, footstomping night of lunacy.” – Evening Echo

“John Blek & The Rats are set for understated success with an album like this.” – Music and Everything

“There are lots of reference points here, not least the ghost of Townes Van Zandt, the Felice Brothers and Willie Nelson. But equally it all sounds refreshingly local. And though the 12 tracks on the band’s impressive debut are new, they exude a warm sense of familiarity” – Irish Times

“Steeped in rootsy Americana, this fine mid-tempo collection treads those same heartworn highways as the influences that Blek wears on his sleeve” – Golden Plec

“breathtaking – the band created an atmosphere of a summer night, it felt like you were at a country party surrounded by friends and family. The music was fantastic, the drink was flowing and the craic was mighty!.” –

“From the winding charm of ‘Take Me Home’ to the raucous shuffle of ‘Hand On My Heart’, it’s Americana fed folk rock at it’s best. The Rebel County’s answer to Ryan Adams and his Cardinals” – Hot Press

“John Blek & The Rats are a six-piece folk and country group from Cork City whose infectious brand of Americana influenced balladry has travelled up and down the roads of Ireland, the UK and Europe, kicking up the dust in the dark corners for the last few years.
Born in the modern day dust bowl that is Ireland, John Blek & The Rats take inspiration from range of musical styles such as the outlaw country of Willie Nelson, the protest ballads of Woody Guthrie, the 100 mile-an-hour lyricism of Jack Keruoac and the melancholic country rock of Neil Young. Despite their musical roots being deeply embedded in the past, John Blek & The Rats have a sound that is fresh and modern, while also doffing its hat to a gone bye era. The streak of melancholy that runs throughout their music is tempered only by their penchant for foot stomping rhythms and contagious choruses, a passion for revelry and, at times, lunacy.” – Irish Times

“Sie ziehen den Hut vor alten Helden, Melancholie wird mit sonnig jubilierendem Westcoast-Flair verwoben, die Rhythmen zeigen sich mal stampfend, mal fein ziseliert, ansteckende Refrains führen zu wunderschönen Songs. Grenzen sind zum Sprengen da. Das zeigen sie auch auf „Borders“, ihrem zweiten Bandalbum, welches über Tonetoaster im vergangenen Jahr auch in Deutschland erschien. Live ist die Band eine formidabel zusammenspielende Einheit. Wir werden viel Freude an ihnen haben.” – Orange Blossom Special Festival