Every once in a while a band crop up who are seemingly purpose built to be a big deal. These bands seem ill fitted in small venues playing to tiny crowds, their music bursting our of radios and amplifiers on a different level to every other new band. This year that band are Chapel Club.
“We started gigging properly last Autumn, and the thinking was that we would put on our own shows because otherwise, as an unknown band, you wind up wasting loads of time playing the same dull, empty venues as every other unknown band at 8PM on a rainy Tuesday night. ” says singer Lewis Bowman. This led to the band hosting their own impromptu gigs across London in various venues off the beaten track., “we played a few shows at this amazing acid rasta pub in East London, The Shacklewell Arms, one in some dude's warehouse conversion in Whitechapel... etc. We're doing another one in February at Stamford Works, this big warehouse space in Dalston.”
The band have grand ambitions too, just ask them who they’d like to emulate and a certain friend of Alex Turner and Natasha Khan crops up. “to make one record that could stand alongside Power, Corruption and Lies or Microcastle - even the Fluorescent Grey EP - would make me pretty happy. I guess Scott Walker's track record is pretty incomparable: pop legend, swoonsome space age poet-balladeer, forays into dark disco onNite Flights then an old age of extreme experimentation. ”
The first proper foray into topping the 30 Century Man is Chapel Club’s single ‘O Maybe I’ released on February 22. “I don't mind cryptic lyrics, ones that unfold and become more revealing the more you think about them but you have to be careful, because there's a fine line between artful/interesting and annoying/obscure.” says Lewis. “With O Maybe I, I was just trying to write a more straightforward lyric, a pop lyric I guess. I was doubting myself a bit - just wondering if anyone would have a clue what I was on about. I came back from buying booze at this one rehearsal and, in the two minutes I'd been gone, the guys had come up with the bones of O Maybe I. Pretty quickly, the phrase itself just kind of floated into view, and the melody too, and together they suggested a tone for the wider lyric: the whole frantic monologue/spurned lover thing. It didn't take long to write. I've been in that position, I know how it can mess with a normally restrained person's head”
Doom laden and bombastic they are not treading any new paths with their gloomy rock anthems. The influences may be clear but the magic lies in the delivery. Confident and self assured Chapel Club are a band who have their destiny in their sites and it’s just a matter of time before the world is holding them close to their chest.