Guitarist & Bassist for the Heathen Apostles, The Cramps, Nick Curran & the Lowlifes

Posts tagged “Gothic Country Group Heathen Apostles

Great Review for Gothic Country Group Heathen Apostles

Just days before embarking on their upcoming UK tour, the Los Angeles dark roots and Gothic country group Heathen Apostles unveiled their latest highly anticipated seventh album, showcasing their distinctive blend of Bluegrass, Country and Blues.

Gothic Country Group Heathen Apostles

These are great times to be a fan of the Heathen Apostles. Their new album arrives and any day soon they begin their second, and most extensive, tour of the UK. We have championed them for a few years now and though they are by no means a Celtic-Punk band their music straddles Bluegrass, murderfolk, Gothic and spaghetti western alongside more mundane genres that are mundane no more after being filtered through the Heathen Apostles Southern Gothic Americana. The In Between is the groups seventh studio album and is released on Ratchet Blade Records. The label run by Chopper Franklin, ex- Cramps bassist, that specialises in this kind of music.

Gothic country group Heathen Apostles

You could be forgiven for thinking Heathen Apostles hail from the foothills of the Appalachian mountains rather than LA but their music conveys such great imagery it’s hard to imagine them wandering the streets of LA on foot rather than horse! Superbly produced by Chopper Franklin, The In Between features nine original songs rounded up to ten with a cover of the Mark Lanegan (1964-2022) track ‘The Gravedigger’s Song’ from his 2012 album Blues Funeral.

Singer Mather Louth states,

“The idea of the ‘in between’ is all about learning to sit with- and eventually befriend- the uncomfortable times of not knowing what is coming next, either within one’s own life or within the collective. Uncertainty is a very ungrounding sensation, and the emotions that arise from that discomfort can be challenging to navigate. Exploring this sense of uncertainty proved cathartic for me, and I hope it will offer that same release for listeners.”

Gothic country group Heathen Apostles

Heathen Apostles left to right: Thomas Lorioux – Double Bass * Mather Louth – Vocals * Chopper Franklin – Mandolin / Banjo / Guitar / Drums/ Vocal * Luis Mascaro – Fiddle *

The In Between kicks off with the startling title track and the double bass and mandolin lead into Luis Mascaro’s alluringly dark violin. Blessed with the voice to accompany the Heathen Apostles music the beautiful Mather Louth uses her vocals as an instrument to round out the sound.

“Here I stand | The in between | A pregnant pause | In everything | What falls away | Was meant to be | What lies ahead | Is yet to see”

The music may be dark and somewhat gloomy but it’s not without lighter touches and Mather’s voice is simply a wonder to listen to. Recorded at the beginning of 2024, it truly embodies its title by balancing between darkness and light and the tangible past and the uncertain future. From the opening song you can sense the Country roots here and on ‘Capital T’ like some Goth hoedown as Mather proclaims

“don’t tell me that it’s wine and roses…what rose smells like that”

during the chorus. Bands like Calexico have made a career touching upon western themes and landscapes but compared to what we have hear their music can be described as twee. ‘The Gods Of Men’ takes the Spaghetti Western theme and runs with it with a song whose lightness betrays its subject matter. ‘Coffin For The Nail’ sees Mather and Chopper spitting out the words through a world weary exhausted drawl as you can almost feel the dust blown across your face. ‘Deama’ sees Chopper’s mandolin and Mascaro’s fiddle carrying the song as Mather tells of a scorned woman. ‘Easy Come, Easy Go’ sees a more lighthearted approach and sees those Country influences rise to the top. the band shift gears next for ‘In The Blood’, a song more reminiscent of their early days with it’s speedy tempo during the chorus and slowed down verses while Mather’s howls add to the effect. The one cover here, ‘The Gravediggers Song’, sees them stick fairly closely to the stunning Mark Lanegan original. Lanegan’s barely disguised aggression in the song is replaced by Mather’s dazzling vocals and delicate French whispers, emphasising the song’s dark beauty. We are nearing the end sadly and sorrowful violin and banjo carry ‘Love Letter’ while the curtain comes down on The In Between with ‘He Stood Tall’ and the sound of a thunderstorm as the song takes in honky tonk piano and another great song sees the album out.

Gothic country band the Heathen Apostles

The Heathen Apostles first toured the UK this time last year and they are returning again. Kicking off in Reading on July 17th and London the following day at The Lexington the tour includes a three day residency (August 5th – 7th) at Edinburgh, Scotland’s Fringe Festival. A review of last year’s Lexington show – “As if plucked from a surreal spaghetti western, Mather Louth and Chopper Franklin made quite the spectacle, striding down London’s Pentonville Road in full regalia… The Heathen Apostles had etched themselves into our dark hearts, ensuring their spectral melodies and mystical storytelling would stay with us long after the last note had faded into the night.” Dates not be missed so check the bands social media for up to date announcements.