As the Smiths ushered in a new era of indie gunslingers, Manchester band James were billed by many as the pick of the early-1980s hopefuls. Yet despite a keen live following, they flitted between record companies, enduring years of struggle. It wasn't until Madchester started swaggering under the baggy grooves of the Happy Mondays and Stone Roses that the band really took off, signing with Fontana Records and releasing acclaimed third album Gold Mother (1990). When live favourite “Sit Down” was re-released as a single, it suddenly became a huge hit, reaching Number 2 in the charts and causing mass sit-downs at gigs and in clubs. Beginning a long relationship with legendary producer Brian Eno on fifth album Laid in 1993, James were caught up in the Britpop era when 1997's Whiplash produced the hits “She's a Star” and “Destiny Calling”. The band split in 2001, with frontman Tim Booth pursuing a solo career, but they reformed in 2007 to release Hey Ma. They followed up with The Night Before and The Morning After in 2010, La Petite Mort in 2014 and Girl at the End of the World in 2016. With guitarist Larry Gott taking a break, the band toured without him, with former guitarist Adrian Oxaal returning to his spot. In 2018 they released EP Better Than That which reached Number 1 on the Vinyl Singles Chart. They followed the EP up later that year with the album Living in Extraordinary Times. Even before the release of that album, the band members had already started writing songs for their next album. When the COVID-19 pandemic forced most of the world into lockdown, the band members were scattered in different countries. The band hired producer Jacknife Lee, who lived within two miles of Tim Booth in Los Angeles, California. Using the demos the band had already laid down before lockdown and adding layers of further instrumentation, Tim Booth and Jacknife Lee helped to bang their next album into shape. Released in June 2021, All the Colours of You was greeted with positive reviews. The band toasted their 40th anniversary in 2023 with a new orchestral album, Be Opened By The Wonderful, featuring some of their best tracks and fan favourites transformed by a 22-piece orchestra and eight-piece choir.