Open Fire: Snow Patrol's Nathan Connolly teams up with Biffy Clyro man Simon Neil for solo single

Nathan Connolly
Nathan Connolly

SNOW PATROL guitarist Nathan Connolly has teamed up with Biffy Clyro frontman Simon Neil for a new solo single.

The Irvine, Scotland-born Biffy Clyro singer/guitarist provides vocals on Fires, a shoegaze-informed rock song which he also co-wrote. Released today, it's the first taste of Belfast-born musician Connolly's forthcoming debut solo album, The Strange Order of Things, which will be released on April 21 via Third Bar.

"I have known Simon since back in my early days with Snow Patrol," explains Connolly (42), who joined Snow Patrol in 2002 and has previously fronted the side project band Little Matador.

"The first show I remember playing together was a Zane Lowe MTV Gonzo show in Glasgow in 2003. Over the years, we occasionally mentioned doing something together at some point.

"Finally, the opportunity came in the form of Fires. He is extraordinary and came at the song from somewhere I don’t think I would or could have."

Simon Neil and Nathan Connolly
Simon Neil and Nathan Connolly

The Belfast musician's Little Matador bandmate, guitarist Dave Magee, also co-wrote the track, with what Connolly describes as "an effortless gift for the riff".

"I wrote and recorded the ideas for this at home thinking it was just another silly riff that would amount to nothing - but Nathan had other ideas," comments Magee, whose brother and fellow ex-LaFaro man Herb Magee plays bass on the tune.

Connolly began working on The Strange Order of Things with producer Rocky O'Reilly in 2017 at Start Together Studios in Belfast.

"Helping Nathan to make this fuzzy monster has truly been a special experience," O'Reilly comments.

"It’s had such a positive impact on the way I do everything, I genuinely can’t believe I got to be a part of it."