Preview: RURA’s first Borders gig

RURA live in Tonder 2015
RURA live in Tonder 2015
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It’s fair to say that RURA, voted Live Act of the Year at the 2015 Scots Trad Music Awards, is a band in hot demand.

The powerhouse five-piece has embarked on a 17-date May tour that serves as a warm-up for major touring in Austria in June, appearances at more than a dozen festivals across Europe this summer, and further extensive touring in the autumn.

“I think we’ve got something like two weekends off between mid-May and October!” said the band’s David Foley who, alongside bandmates Steven Blake, Adam Brown, Adam Holmes and Jack Smedley, is looking forward to introducing many more people to RURA’s powerful instrumentals and haunting song-craft.

And audiences in the Borders will have a first ever chance to find out just why venerable world music magazine Songlines hailed them as “one of the most exciting bands on the Scottish folk scene” when RURA play at the Eastgate Theatre, Peebles on Wednesday May 25.

Having first come to attention in 2010 as award-winners at Glasgow’s renowned Celtic Connections festival, RURA reinforced their reputation as one of Scotland’s most talked-about folk-based bands with the release of their second album, Despite the Dark, in 2015.

The album is a perfect showcase for the band’s rugged yet refined blend of fiddle, Highland pipes, whistle, flute, bodhran, guitar and voice. “Our music is definitely within the folk genre but we do our best to make it somewhat contemporary,” explained David. “It’s always hard to describe your own music … the best thing is to have a listen.”

The band itself sees the new album as a step up in musicianship since their debut, Break it Up, in 2012. “When we made the first album we were still students and for most of us it was our first time making an album, so everything was new to us,” said David. “Since then the music has definitely changed, with a lot more original material.”

The band prides itself on its live performances, “We all love gigging, so hopefully that comes across. Playing a good live show is a brilliant feeling, especially when the audience really get into it.”

The gig starts at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £14, and are available from the box office or at www.eastgatearts.com