John Blek & The Rats announce the release of their second album, ‘Borders’

An album that captures the band shaking off their ramshackle beginnings and committing to tape a collection of new songs with a cohesive sonic richness, that embrace a fuller, fuzzier sound while striking a balance between experimentation and the tunefulness for which they have become known.

This is the sound of John Blek & The Rats exploring their own musical chemistry, a band evolving, breaking down barriers and crossing new ‘Borders’.


Thanks to the Irish Times for the kind words for our new record 'Borders', out on 18th September.

The title may be misleadingly topical as may be the somewhat disconcerting preoccupation with morbidity, but that should not deter investigation of this impressive second album by the six-piece Cork band.

While their debut made good currency out of leanings, these nine tracks are more cohesive and mature, with echoes of The Jayhawks.

The title is taken from the opening ballad Guard My Borders, which is redolent of that excellent British band The Leisure Society, but these borders are more personal than political.
John Blek’s voice carries a tinge of sadness with storyteller insight and Robbie Barron’s guitar a snarl of menace. The sound is filled out with David Murphy’s pedal steel and Anna Mitchell’s atmospheric keyboards (her 2015 solo album was equally noteworthy).

A band on the up.

★ ★ ★ ★
— The Irish Times