Last year, British roots-rock outfit Alberta Cross released a seven-song EP, "The Thief and the Heartbreaker," via Geffen in the United States and Fiction in the United Kingdom to much critical succes

Last year, British roots-rock outfit Alberta Cross released a seven-song EP, "The Thief and the Heartbreaker," via Geffen in the United States and Fiction in the United Kingdom to much critical success. However, among reorganizational turmoil at Universal and shifting A&R priorities, the band cut strings with the major after losing the option for a full-length during its contractual period. Which isn't a bad thing, according to Alberta Cross principal Terry Wolfers.

"Everything's wide open now," says Wolfers, who co-writes the dusty and soulful tunes with singer Petter Ericson Stakee. "We've really started to build something [in the States]." Alberta Cross shared the stage with former members of Shudder to Think and OK Go at the Barack Rock concert/rally in February in New York and overtook the city's Living Room for a few dates, in addition to rocking the CMJ Music Marathon last fall.

The response, he says, has been good enough that the band plans to move to New York permanently this spring and is mulling a "darker" full-length with potential producers like Alan Bezozi (Regina Spektor) and Victor Van Vugt (Nick Cave, PJ Harvey).

"At an early stage we realized there was a huge opportunity for the band in America," co-manager Rene Symonds says. He and his partner Iain Watt at Machine Management also handle artists like Mika and post-Test Icicles project Lightspeed Champion. "We almost immediately appointed Sam Kirby, Marc Geiger and Seth Seigle at the William Morris Agency to help us on the U.S. strategy." The booking giant has secured a slot for Alberta Cross at the Roxy Festival March 29 in California and at the new All Points West fest in early August in New Jersey.

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