I walk into Asylum in the middle of a soundcheck.
There are people all over the place, any number of whom look like they could be a
roadie, or the member of a band, or a vagrant.
Never before having met any of the people I am about to interview, figure a
bit of guess work's going to have to be involved as I try to pick them out.
It's lucky for me then that one of the first people whose eye I catch looks exactly like his photo.
This is Tommy, the front man of the band.
He's tall and wiry and is dressed rock 'n' roll.
With impeccable manners and an easy manner he welcomes us and suggests moving to
the dressing room for more of a chat.
We're accompanied by Rob, the perpetual sunglasses wearing guitarist, equally amicable.
We take our seats in a backstage dressing room and have a chat.
Both guys are relaxed and friendly.
Bassist Toshi and drummer J join us at different stages of the interview.
So, you're on a bit of a tour at the moment?
How's it going? Tommy: It's going great. It's our fifth show?
Rob: Uh, yeah. Fifth show in.
Tommy: We've been out and played a whole load of shows since the record came out, and we're
playing shows and people are singing our songs back at us.
It's really cool. Our album's been ready for about a year now but it's only just been released.
Have you done the whole toilet circuit thing? Tommy: We're still doing it. This is one of the nicest places we'll be playing on this tour.
We've all been in bands before and we realise that doing the toilet circuit is essential.
Being that close to the audience is like an audio mirror, and you can see how well the songs go down.
So what's been one of your best shows to date? Tommy: We've had our ups and downs.
Rob: When we played in Tokyo...
Tommy: Yeah, these are simultaneously among my worst shows and Rob's favourite.
Rob: Looking back, at the time we'd gone out to Japan and of course, we had to hire gear.
Because we were relatively unheard of, we got given tuppence ha'penny to do it with.
We bought stuff that was shit to play with and there were a few teething problems on the first night.
But it was just the whole buzz of being there.
Tommy: We've been lucky enough to do some great tours as well.
We toured with Skid Row and we're great fans of theirs.
They were great guys and really took us under their wing.
Rob: By the end of the tour they were trying to keep us there, trying to drive us on.
Tommy: Yeah, they were trying to drive us on. And Whitesnake was great as well.
How do you find playing such big shows? Tommy: Generally I find big shows easier.
We have room to be ourselves.
You're a bit restricted on a small stage.
Plus, being on a big stage you're generally further from the audience and there's less nerves.
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