The Strypes – Upbeat Youngsters hit 6 Music Live
You should enjoy this video clip featuring four improbably young, traditional musicians, playing ‘Mysterty Man’ on the Cerys Matthews show this morning. As the diminutive lads, aged between 14 and 16, took to the stage in the Maida Vale studios they looked as if they really ought to be in school. But according to bass guitarist Pete O’Hanlon (16) ‘School wasn’t cool, so I stopped going’.
But they are still very much boys from Cavan, their home-town in Ireland. ‘We’ve had lots of e-mails from your friends back in Cavan’ said Cerys Matthews ‘they’re all listening to the show today’. Their rock star exteriors melted and they were laughing away like proper children, albeit ones dressed in very smart woollen mod suits.
They couldn’t be more retro if they tried, but the music is tight and their performances are bursting with energy, and this is what seems to strike a chord with the audience. If we’re going to watch a replay of the Beatles in the Cavern Club, or the Rolling Stones at Crawdaddy in Richmond, then why not have youngsters up there doing it well and making a living.
Whilst not pushed by ambitious Mums and Dads, the boys do reveal that they come from a very musical background. Josh McClorey and Pete O’Hanlon’s Dads used to play in a band together. They’ve been playing instruments ‘since we were seven or eight’ and they were brought up to the sounds of the Yardbirds and the Animals. Their shared love of the Beatles led them to the Stones, The Who, Chuck Berry, Bo Diddly, Muddy Waters and so on.
They are proud of their covers, but they are now signed to Mercury records and a new single which comes out in the spring will be one of their own songs, Blue Collar Jane. If the recording is as good as the live performance, it’s going to do very well indeed. Back-to-Basics Rock delivered with panache.