This Is The Kit is your favourite band’s favourite band. Theirs isn’t a story of a label exec hearing their set at a festival and signing a ‘rich and famous’ contract, but rather another artist, The National’s Aaron Dessner. The result was 2015’s wistful Bashed Out, which came out on Dessner’s own Brassland Records. That same year, Sharon Van Etten called out This Is The Kit as her favourite new artist. That’s to say nothing of their definitive release, 2017’s slick and vibrant Moonshine Freeze.
This Is The Kit is Kate Stables, who hails from Winchester, but now oscillates between Bristol and Paris. Her mesmeric, rhythm centric folk aesthetic comes from the persuasiveness of the songwriting and the understated guitar and banjo moves driving the songs. It’s not exactly indie; there is no hint of unearned affectation, ham-handed heartstring tugging, or awkward experimentalism anywhere. Nods to traditional music the world across anchor it as a songwriting worthy to be called folk even by the most steadfast folkie.
There is an unflappable joy to the skittering songs of This Is The Kit, an omnipresent optimism. Maybe folk songs won’t change the world, but the clever compositions by Kate Stables seem as good a place as any to put our faith.
Biography by Liam Prost