Miraculous Mule Hellbound Hearts Johnny Seven
Westgarth Social Club, Middlesbrough.
London trio Miraculous Mule deliver a slick and seemingly effortless, hard-blues driven brand of rock 'n' roll, but it's knife-edge stuff. We can explain. The slick and effortless part comes from the fact that these boys have been cutting their teeth and earning their stripes over the years with a devout immersion in gothic American roots music, before that particular bandwagon arrived in town again, and again after it left. If that wagon is back, they don't really care and neither should you. Brothers Michael and Patrick were born into a rock 'n' roll home with Elvis and Tammy as surrogate parents.
Michael J Sheehy has fronted 90s cult band Dream City Film Club and recorded five solo records as well as fronting the short lived Saint Silas Intercession with his brother Patrick McCarthy at his side for the most part. Witnesses to these previous outings and their current incarnation will know that the soul and confrontation they project is real. They can play and they can sing. There is no fucking about. The edge that they skirt comes in part from their school of hard knocks north London council-estate, Irish Catholic upbringing. They have known drummer Ian Burns since childhood and all grew up on Saint Silas council estate on Queens Cresent in Kentish Town. For the lifelong friends, music provided a much needed escape from the culture of drugs and violence that had depressed the area.
Sheehy is a well-traversed talent as detailed above but he remembers little of his journey having spent most of the 90s through to 2011 in a boozy London wilderness. His moment of salvation came when he had to be rescued from his burning flat, comatose, alone and shit-faced, a frying pan left on the stove. Sheehy has since cleaned up his act which has brought about a cool and steady focus which brings the bands nihilistic history in line with a resolute future.
In 2013 the band released their debut album 'Deep Fried' via Bronzerat Records (Seasick Steve, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Gemma Ray) and followed it up in 2014 with the mini album 'Blues Uzi'. January 2017 sees the release of their second album 'Two Tonne Testimony' which takes their blues and gospel driven rock 'n' roll sound to a new level as well as incorporating elements of psychedelic soul and stoner/space rock. The album is preceded by the single 'Sound of the Summer'.