Black Water County: at Key Club on 16 November

Sometimes there are gigs where you simply pinch yourself and say, ‘I was there’, and tonight was one of those” ROCK REGENERATION

BLACK WATER COUNTY shared their new single, CRUEL STATE OF MIND, the second chapter in a series of singles over the summer and the autumn leading to the release of their third studio album, The Only Life Worth Living, later in the year.

Like its predecessor – the album’s title track – Cruel State Of Mind is fast-paced and frenetic, at times thrillingly banjo-led, and always urgent and memorable, but this time with a more tortured subplot, as the band explained:

Cruel State Of Mind is our own familiar love song for the ages, full to the brim of agonised imagery – ‘like the deaf leading the blind’ and ‘full circle, like Sisyphus’ stone’ – and we wanted to hammer home the feeling of thoughts going round and round your head with no respite. The song hits its climax with a passionate U-turn – ‘Something’s got to give’ and ‘’I’ll leave it all behind unless it leads me back to you’ – ultimately ending up where we started in the hope of love’s return, but can we ever escape our own vicious cycles?

Despite the recent dystopian environment the human race has had to endure with the undoing of habits and the re-writing of thought patterns, there are some things that will never NOT be tangled up in the human experience. This exasperated love song serves us all: past, present and future.”

Cruel State Of Mind comes accompanied by a video dashed with horror but, in true Black Water County style, always with an irreverence and dark humour. Watch the video here:

The single and album were recorded with their close friend and long-term producer Lewis Johns at the Ranch in Southampton. “He’s once again worked his magic,” say the band with genuine gratitude, “to create a record that we couldn’t be more proud of.”

To coincide with the album release, the band will play a full headline UK tour later this year, which includes a hometown date at Bournemouth Old Fire Station, the only show where they will be performing their new album in its entirety, complete with special guests, live strings and brass.


Thu 09 NOTTINGHAM Rescue Rooms
Fri 10 LONDON Camden Assembly
Sat 11 BRISTOL Thekla
Sun 12 PLYMOUTH Junction
Thu 16 LEEDS Key Club
Fri 17 NEWCASTLE Anarchy Brew
Sat 18 GLASGOW Audio


Sat 16 BOURNEMOUTH Old Fire Station

Tickets available from:

A beautiful cacophony of distilled folk-punk bliss …” LONDON CELTIC PUNKS

2023 is a year of evolution for Black Water County, a new age of refined direction and purpose; a time to embrace the promise of the next decade to come.

Black Water County:

Shan Borovnicke Byrom vocals and tin whistle

Tim Harris vocals and bass

Bradley Hutchings Clarke guitar

Gavin Coles guitar, mandolin and banjo

Ollie Beaton drums






Photography by Georgia Penny.

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