Band of the Week (Week 4) – Rachel Stamp

Tuesday, 28 January 2014 | By | Add a Comment

Rachel Stamp

 

Choosing a band of the week is never easy but I’ve opted to go for one that probably influenced me more in the last fifteen years than most others.

 

In 1999 my favourite band was still the Black Crowes and I’d booked to see a mini all day fest in Wembley in the summer of that year. It was called the Twin Toxic Towers Ball and on the bill were Aerosmith, Lenny Kravitz, The Black Crowes, Stereophonics and Three Colours Red. I still have the ticket; it cost me £30. Those were the days! Anyway, it was on a Saturday and I was looking for something to do on the Sunday as I had the weekend in London, being from Peterborough where not much happens. So looking through Kerrang! I saw Rachel Stamp were playing in a suburb of London. Intrigued by their colourful glam punk look, I impulsively bought a ticket and went along not sure what to expect.

 

The gig was quite unlike any I had been to at that point: Lot’s of people in dress up, glitter, fairy wings (and that was some of the boys) but there were lots of girls too, a lot more than most other concerts I’d been to at that point. Anyway, it seemed a bit of a collective among many fans and I was welcomed in by a small, glittery group of fans who told me of their love for the band. When Stamp came on all I can say is I was impressed. A really colourful and energetic performance, and the fans loved the songs and jumped along and sang. I joined in even through I had no idea what most were about: “I got the worm”; “I wanna be your doll”. It was a lot of fun.

 

I found out later Rachel Stamp were an unsigned band at the time but had a massive underground following with fans who liked Placebo and Manics also, as well as other bands I liked at the time like Mansun and Suede. I was most impressed with Will (Crewdson), their guitarist. Not only could he really play but he really was entertaining to watch. Lots of big arm movements and rocking all over the place, there was so much energy. For several years after I followed the band around the UK until they split in 2003. They became my favourite band and took the crown from the Crowes who were getting a bit experimental at that point (although I still love the first three Crowes albums). The first album Rachel Stamp album released ‘Hymns for Strange Children’ is still one of my favourite albums.

 

In 2008 when I was looking for a new band in Leeds I noticed Polly liked Rachel Stamp. That for me was a good enough reason as any in my opinion to start a band with him (apart from seeing him in Phluid and really liking them of course). I didn’t know anyone else at that point who had even heard of them. In our first practice we even covered a few stamp songs (badly). Years later I even went one further and bought an identical Rickenbacker electric guitar to the one that Will used. It was pretty unusual and expensive and doesn’t sound as good when I play it but I like looking at it for nostalgic purposes. Will Crewdson is still one of my favourite guitarists. I remember in Kerrang! they once described him as the “glam rock Slash”. That’s pretty accurate and I continue to try and steal his stage moves although I prefer a Les Paul.

– Tim: Idol

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