The past two years have been an exhilarating journey for Leeds-based quintet Ellen and the Escapades. Blending elements of folk, pop and rock, the band’s distinctive and unabashedly appealing sound seems to have everyone talking. After winning 2010’s Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition and playing BBC Introducing stages at both Reading and Leeds festivals, the band have gone from strength to strength.
Ellen’s dusky, enchanting vocals and strikingly well-crafted songs have already captured the attention of BBC Radio 2, BBC 6 Music and Amazing Radio. Fans include Lauren Laverne and Steve Lamacq, and the band were recently playlisted for ten weeks on Amazing Radio. Supporting the likes of Josh T Pearson, First Aid Kit and Paolo Nutini has brought the band’s music to even bigger audiences all over the country.
Summer 2011 saw an abundant string of festival appearances for Ellen and co, including Glastonbury, Bestival and Green Man festivals, and a range of smaller boutique festivals such as 2000 Trees, Lounge On The Farm and Winterwell. Their Green Man appearance on one of the festival’s biggest stages attracted a full capacity crowd and resulted in unprecedented press attention, including hugely complimentary reviews from Clash Magazine and The Line of Best Fit.
Last autumn’s single When The Tide Creeps In hit the top spot in both the Amazon Folk and Amazon Rock charts during the week of its October release, and the band’s subsequent Pledge Music campaign saw them reach their full target in just eight days. The next two months saw an excited band make plans towards their debut LP and take to the road for countless live dates. Ellen and the Escapades release their highly anticipated debut album All The Crooked Scenes on 16 April.
‘Ellen Smith’s captivating vocals are the highlight in a fantastically catchy collection of songs that tread a line between folk, pop and rock, with plenty of harmonica thrown in for good measure…. these guys are definitely one to watch’ – Clash Magazine
Support comes from Paper Aeroplanes. Sarah Howells and Richard Llewellyn’s musical partnership began six years ago in small town West Wales and in 2009 they released their debut album The Day We Ran Into The Sea. Since its release they have made the Radio 2 playlist and supported acts as varied as Ron Sexsmith, Ed Sheeran, Marina and the Diamonds and Chris Wood. Having been compared to the likes of Gemma Hayes, Turin Brakes and Nerina Pallot, they then released mini-album We Are Ghosts to more critical acclaim.