Some of you may have been lucky enough to catch the new series of music shorts on Channel 4 over recent weeks. The programme, which airs on Wednesday nights, is called ‘Intros’ and features some of the country’s up-and-coming rock bands and breakthrough music acts. The one thing they all have in common is that they are predicted to make a big name for themselves in the coming years. Last week’s programme featured a 4 piece rock band called Tribes. Signed by one of the most iconic record labels around, Island Records, the Camden-based guitar band look set to take the music world by storm following the release of their debut album, Baby. Island Records believes Tribes may turn out to be even more successful than its other album chart-topping act, Florence and the Machine.
In the interview lead singer, Johnny Lloyd, and guitarist, Dan White, spoke of their musical influences and explained why they chose to go down the road of guitar-driven music in preference to the electronic/ digital route favoured by many their peers. The rationale behind this was that they view guitar music as ‘real’ and authentic, and believe that old-fashioned rock values are best represented through the traditional format of drum, lead and bass guitar. It’s no surprise then that they cited their ‘traditional’ musical influences as The Rolling Stones, The Clash, Led Zeppelin and the Pixies. It was also no co-incidence that they filmed the interview in a pub in Camden sitting on what is perhaps the most iconic piece of traditional English furniture available, a leather chesterfield sofa.
Yet there’s more to this affinity than mere tradition or an appreciation of quality and value. Chesterfield sofas seem to hold some special significance for Tribes, and have featured in some of the band’s videos. For Johnny Lloyd the resonance is even more significant. Put yourself in the place of a rock star: when you get that first royalty’s cheque, what would you blow your money on- wine, women and song? We guess many would, not to mention a Rolex or two and a Bentley. Yet that can’t be said of Tribes’ vocalist, Johnny Lloyd. The first thing he did with his money was to go and buy two leather chesterfield sofas. Now, you might argue that’s hardly rock and roll sort of behaviour, but if you ask us that’s right on the mark. That’s the sign of a man who appreciates not only tradition but also value and workmanship. You can say what you will about the youth of today, but some of them just have impeccable taste and know how to spot quality from a mile away. When Tribes top the album charts in the years to come, just remember many of their hit songs will have been penned on a chesterfield sofa.