|The Music Biography - 2002|
In just over a year, The Music have been declared the "best unsigned band in Britain" by Radio 1's Steve Lamacq, (prior to The Musics signing to Hut Recordings, the label responsible for The Verve and Smashing Pumpkins) and "potentially the most important group since Oasis" by the NME. The band have also somehow found time in their unrelenting tour schedule (they've been on the road since leaving school in June 2001) to support New Order, The Charlatans and the aforementioned Gallaghers.
All this on the back of just three records in the UK the limited edition indie single Take The Long Road And Walk It, an EP entitled You Might As Well Try to Fuck Me and the recent People EP. Listen to any of these and its obvious - not since the mid-Nineties has a young British band set an agenda, threatened to mean anything to the nation's under-18's, or even hung around with the intent of these Leeds teenagers, The Music. Having spent their teens surrounded by 'safe' British bands that have failed to inspire them (The Music were barely in double digits when Britpop was at its height), they've had to look elsewhere for inspiration.
Ask them what inspires them and they all start talking at the same time, firing off a huge list. "Art", shout Robert and Adam in scary unison. The other suggestions come from all over: films including Shawshank Redemption, books like One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Catcher in the Rye. "And spiritual shit" says Robert. "Every man today is a result of his thoughts of yesterday". He pauses, with a mischievious look in his eye. "Bruce Lee said that!"
Ask The Music about their craft and they talk passionately about their love for making music, how they buzz off entertaining and helping people escape the mundanities of everyday life. But ask them why they formed a band and their answers are a totally damning indictment of what it is to be a teenager in 2002. "There were nowt else to do apart from hang-out on street corners. We formed out of boredom really." The only alternatives were to "play football or rugby" (Adam) or, more realistically, becoming a "printer or sparkie" (Stuart). As Adam puts it, the choices amounted to "fuck all".
So out of a lack of stuff to do, they started a band. Robert, Adam and Stuart were rehearsing as an embryonic version of The Music most dinner times during their last years at Brigshaw High School in Kippax, Leeds. Drummer Phil, from nearby Garforth, left another band to complete The Music in early 1999.
With the chemistry instant, they began playing out live at least twice a week, often more. "We were never bothered about other people hearing our music, it was just a buzz" Robert says.
Within months though, they had management, glowing features in the British music press and a gaggle of A&R men chasing their signature. Take The Long Road And Walk It came from a demo session in Leeds, and Fierce Panda Records offered to release it. A deal with Hut Recordings followed and after finishing their studies, the band set off on tour in June last year.
Undoubtedly the best place to catch The Music is where they always seem to be - on the road. It's where the songs are truly born, where they take on a life of their own. There you can appreciate their raucous and freewheeling psychedelia, be
struck dumb by their power and vibes and see how they really do make guitar music that you can dance to. "When we play we try and make people feel better and they go up a gear, y'know what I mean? Then it puts us up a gear, y'know?" Robert (excited) "Its beauty when crowd are on song, it just makes you feel. It's
fuckin' beautiful. Fuckin' beautiful".
The Musics first release on Hut Recordings was the four-track You Might As Well Try to Fuck Me EP in November 2001 followed this spring by The People EP; a tantalising hint at the album they have recently completed with Jim Abbiss (production credits include DJ Shadow & Bjork) at Jacobs studio in Surrey.
The ten-track self titled album recorded over the past six months perfectly encapsulates the bands youthful rush of energy. Including both recent single The People as well as a re-recorded version of Take The Long Road And Walk It (to be re-released as a single in August 2002) as well as live favourites Disco and The Dance, the album will be released on September 2nd 2002.
April saw the band play their first sold out headline tour of the UK culminating in a euphoric show at Londons Astoria with the Doves. This summer sees the band perform at Glastonbury (June 29th), T In The Park (July 13th), Leeds Festival (August 23rd), Reading Festival (August 25th) and a number of prestige events around the world including the Fuji Festival in Japan, the Quart Festival in Norway and Pukkelpop in Belgium.
As the sample that heralds their arrival on-stage says, when youre 18 years-old, its a world where anything is possible.
The Music are:
Robert Harvey (Vocals/Guitars)
Adam Nutter (Guitar)
Stuart Coleman (Bass Guitar)
Phil Jordan (Drums)