Taking a cue from earnest, pastoral folk-rockers like Mumford & Sons, the Avett Brothers, and Stornoway, London alt-country/indie folk trio Bear's Den formed around the talents of Joey Haynes and ex-Cherbourg members Andrew Davie and Kev Jones. Bear's Den honed their chops on tours with contemporaries like Of Monsters and Men, the Smoke Fairies, and Matt Corby before securing the opening slot for the Mumford's 2012 performance at London's massive O2 Arena. The group issued a pair of debut EPs, Without/Within and Agape, through the Communion label the following year. In 2014, the trio entered the studio with Ian Grimble to record their debut album, Islands. Released toward the end of the year, the album hit the U.K. albums chart in the Top 50 and album track "Above the Clouds of Pompeii" was nominated for an Ivor Novello award in early 2015. That year also saw the band head out in support of the release with tours across the U.S., Europe, and the U.K. At the beginning of 2016, Haynes announced he was leaving the band to spend more time with family; Jones and Davie continued on. In April, the band released a teaser trailer for their sophomore album, Red Earth & Pouring Rain. The album, produced once again by Grimble, was released in July.