Justin Vernon's nom de plume has been a feature of earnest music publications, serious radio-stations and, most recently, casual listeners for the best part of five years now. After the well-documented tale surrounding the recording processes for the debut-album, where Vernon holed himself up in a Wisconsin woodland-hut during the height of winter, possibly armed with an endless diet of freshly shot bear (Maccy D's were shut) and a candle and enough songs to record the bare bones of the album, "For Emma, Forever Ago", his European label (4AD) were perhaps unexpectedly facing-up to the fact that a follow-up might have to be created.
They needn't have worried - in true time-honoured tradition, Vernon joined a few others and Bon Iver swelled its ranks to produce a group album in 2011 simply entitled "Bon Iver". It's bloody excellent - atmospheric beautiful and fragile grown-up music for people who might not have grown-up at all.
In fact Vernon and crew have been busy releasing quite a few extra-curricular singles, EPs and iTunes exclusives since that inaugural 2008 release, including the singles "For Emma" and "Skinny Love" (later covered by young singer Birdy for a Top 20 hit), the EP "Blood Bank", and a brand new iTunes session comprised of various straight-to-tape recordings and a cover of Bjork's "Who Is It". That's all in addition to the various compilation tracks made available and winning a Grammy for Best New Artist (eh? Four years after forming?) and Best Alternative Album - busy and happy times.
2012 hasn't seen a great deal more from the band, aside from festival slots including a headliner at this year's Latitude in July, designing footwear for an L.A.-based animal-welfare foundation and, just announced, a proper UK headline tour in November! The first stop will be at Wembley Arena on the 8th, followed by Manchester, Glasgow (tickets already on sale), Belfast and Dublin. We will have tickets on sale from Friday 22nd June at 9am, priced from £25 upwards. Their popularity suggests a total ticket sell-out.