Devonshire Green. Sunday — 19:45
The Coral’s past speaks volumes, having sold over a million UK albums since their debut EP release in 2001, five of those hitting the top ten, including the chart-topping Magic and Medicine (2003) and eight top 40 singles.
Without so much as a glance over their shoulder, James Skelly (vocals/guitars), Ian Skelly (drums/percussion/vocals), Nick Power (keyboard/vocals), Paul Duffy (bass/keyboards/vocals) and Paul Molloy (guitars) stride into the future to fortify their indefinable position in modern music.
There are no full stops in The Coral’s story, but their return with a seventh album, Distance Inbetween in 2016 turned a distinct new page within it after an unapologetic five year hiatus. Picking up the band’s story from the release of 2010’s Butterfly House, theirs is a tale of uninterrupted individual creativity punctuated by the surprise release of their lost album, The Curse of Love (2014).
A collective for whom permanence is defined by bonds stronger than music, The Coral encouraged each other to go exploring alone after a relentless decade of activity. James Skelly wrote and recorded Love Undercover (2013), establishing his Skeleton Key record label and producing songs for bands including Blossoms, Sundowners and She Drew The Gun. Nick Power revealed literary talents with a book called Small Town Chase (2013); Ian Skelly found a kindred spirit in Paul Molloy (formerly of The Zutons) forming Serpent Power and Paul Duffy turned to soundtrack composition. Founding member, Lee Southall continues his own personal and artistic journeys separately while The Coral regroup, leaving his foot in the door for when his ambitions have been fulfilled elsewhere.
Of the break and return, James Skelly says: "We decided the band had hit a brick wall. We had to stop and take a breath. We had been doing the same thing of touring, doing an album and then touring again for twelve years and it had become a habit everyone was scared to step away from. Looking back now, from the point of view of a reinvigorated band, it was the best decision we could have made."