Walking into The Water Rats, a small pub, just a step away from King’s Cross, at first you may be surprised by regular diners and drinkers, but an astonishing venue awaits just behind the bar. The unexpected friendly and intimate atmosphere may just as well be a description of William the Conqueror, the Cornwall trio consisting of Ruarri Joseph, Harry Harding and Naomi Holmes. William the Conqueror are not a traditional band. They are breaking boundaries with their multi-genre approach to Americana. Whilst the trio takes inspiration from folk rock, there is so much more to their sound than just that; grunge, blues, rock and roll to mention just a few.
The gig began with a supporting act that could not have been any more suitable for William The Conqueror listeners: Jack Carty. He is an Australian folk songwriter currently residing in London and a true enthusiast for the world around him. His explorative and alternative sound combined perfectly with the headlining band’s personality.The predominant theme throughout Jack Carty’s songs was travel - Jack took the audience on a unique journey of catching a flight to Australia straight from a night out. Another one of his songs, “Travelling Shoes”, depicted the attachment one can make to objects through memories. Safe to say he captured my heart, my playlist and my travel bucket-list.
Even though Jack Carty set the bar high, William the Conqueror was incomparable. The band was passionate, engaging with audience and genuinely happy to be there. The band’s enthusiasm made the audience hope the show was never going to end. The band’s performance of ‘Pedestals’ was one of the best of the whole evening. Ruarri smiled as he recited the heart-warming chorus: “Don’t build me up/ You can’t knock me down” which truly uplifted the crowd and felt extremely necessary as the days get darker. Throughout the whole show, the audience cheered, laughed and danced, hopefully forecasting the band’s growing success. William the Conqueror released their debut album, ‘The Proud Disturber Of The Peace’ in 2017, but have since kept themselves busy. Two tracks from their upcoming album ‘Bleeding On The Soundtrack’ are already available with the rest of the album to be released in February 2019.