North London’s ‘Sound of the Suburb’ makes for a great Boxing Day gift
The Beach Boys. Aerosmith. The Dave Clark Five. Following in the footsteps of some of rock and roll’s great five-member bands is the London-bred Sound of the Suburb. A self-proclaimed “high-energy band” from Hampstead Garden Suburb, the Sound has been spreading their love of rock and roll for nearly a decade.
But these aren’t just the strumming of a fistful of middle-aged dads. Born not long after the birth of rock and roll, all five members of Sound of the Suburb – lead guitarist Chris Berlingieri, lead vocalist and front man Rafael Landicho, bassist Steve Phillips, rhythm guitar and backing vocalist Martin Ross, and drummer Mike Solomon – have experience playing rock music on both sides of the Atlantic. They cite such legends as The Beatles, Eddie Cochran, The Police, Elvis Presley and Neil Young as influences.
Initially formed as a cover band, with a repertoire that runs from oldies like “A Hard Day’s Night” and “Johnnie B. Goode” to modern fare like “Dani California,” the Sound began writing and recording original music as well (original material is a requirement for the East Finchley Festival). The group has proven to be a local smash, playing numerous pub events and other special occasions like bar mitzvahs.
The results have culminated in a new CD release, “Sound of the Suburb.” The album’s ten tracks honor the very music that inspired them, melding pop, rock, rockabilly and folk sensibilities, and reminding listeners of a time when the music, not hype or packaging, really was the thing. That said, the album cover photo, featuring the very “Waterloo Sunset” made famous by The Kinks and performed as recently as this summer’s London Olympic Games closing ceremony, is pretty brilliant. Favorite tracks from the album include “’70s Girl,” “The Ballad of East Finchley,” and “Looking For a Sign.” These are friendly guys who know how to rock the house, and “Suburb” not only makes you long for the days of raw rock, but grateful for a band that knows just how to revive it.
It seems the hills aren’t the only spot in Europe alive with the sound of music.
For more information, please visit www.soundofthesuburb.com.
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