Los Angeles quartet The Americans are returning to the UK to support St Paul & The Broken Bones on their tour, which checks in at Leeds next week.
Having also supported the likes of Eric Clapton and The Gipsy Kings earlier this summer, the well connected quartet - who have previously performed as a backing band for Nick Cave, Devendra Banhart and many others - will be bringing their vintage rock’n’roll vibes of their debut album ‘I’ll Be Yours’ to the Brudenell Social Club next Wednesday (November 14).
The Americans released their debut album last year to critical acclaim. Having started out as a roots band enthralled by pre-war American country and blues, they have evolved into a blistering amalgamation of those influences, injected with a fiery blue collar rock”n”roll attitude, absorbing and reconfiguring the history of American music from Chuck Berry and Tom Waits to Bruce Springsteen.
They named themselves after the controversial photo series by Robert Frank, which was first published in 1958 with a foreword by Jack Kerouac. Like Frank’s photos, The Americans’ songs are miniature biographies, intimate and empathic portraits of individuals that leave much unsaid.
The Americans were plucked from obscurity by Jack White, T Bone Burnett and Robert Redford to appear in the recent PBS/BBC4 series American Epic. Featuring artists such as Beck, Elton John, Nas, Willie Nelson, Alabama Shakes and many more, the film reconstructs the story of the first American music in the 1920s and re-assembled the recording apparatus that was used at the time.
As experts in early music, The Americans were invited in to figure out the equipment and make the first recordings. Once the sessions were underway, they functioned as the house band, backing up various artists and suggesting songs to the filmmakers.
Burnett was quoted as saying; ”The Americans are part of this group, these genius 21st century musicians, that are reinventing American heritage music for this century. And it sounds even better this century.”
The Americans presented their American Music lectures on the pre-war recording era at Liverpool and Edinburgh Universities earlier in the year as well as at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, the PBS Annual Meeting in Austin and the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin. They’ll be bringing the lecture to Berlin, Göttingen and Münster this summer.
They have performed on the Late Show with David Letterman, have backed up Nick Cave, Lucinda Williams, Ashley Monroe and Devendra Banhart, and played the first dance at Reese Witherspoon”s wedding.
Watch video for ‘The Right Stuff’ at https://youtu.be/GmBWg1MW87A
Listen to title track ‘I’ll Be Yours’ at https://soundcloud.com/loose-music/the-americans-ill-be-yours