This week’s Band of the Week is the New York based — via Madison, Wisconsin — foursome Locksley. Their sound is best described as The Beatles on garage rock. Now let me preface this by telling you that I dislike The Beatles. I do not now nor have I ever understood what all the fuss was about. Their early stuff was good, certainly better than their later stuff which was just pretentious. There are some fabulous songs in The Beatles catalogue – I do like “Twist & Shout”, “Please, please me”, “Can’t Buy Me Love” and “Help!”. Preferring those earlier Beatles tracks probably help explain why I have fallen in love with Locksley – well that and co-frontman Jesse Laz could have charmed my panties off, but that’s another story.
Locksley’s sound is similar to The Beatles pre-Rubber Soul. Those energetic, fun, and slightly innocent lyrics with the harmonies and melodies of the early 60’s but mixed with garage rock guitars and modern spiky production, creating a sound even a Beatles hater can love. However it’s not just The Beatles sound that Locksley has modelled but the whole package from similar hair cuts — not similar to The Beatles but similar to each other (o.k. they are also similar to The Beatles) — and matching button-down suits with the skinny black tie and even the little bow at the end of their performances.
Not that they need all that. Locksley are good, very good, and I’m not the only one feels that way. MTV thinks so, in fact MTV are so sure that Locksley are that good that they paid for Locksley to make a video. After commissioning Locksley to write the theme tune for their new reality show “Why Can’t I Be You?” they stumped-up for the “Why Can’t I Be You?” video which went on to win MTVU’s The Freshman, beating four major-label acts, and is now on regular rotation on MTV.
So how and why are Locksley still unsigned? The long and short of it is they want to be. Although they have had several major labels approach them they are keeping their options open; frontman Jesse recently told SPIN.com “It seems if you're unsigned almost anything you do is credible”.
So who are the John, Paul, George and Ringo of Locksley? Jess Laz (co-lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Kai Kennedy (lead guitar, co-lead vocals), Aaron Collins (bass, vocals) and Sam Bair (drums) – with Jesse and Kai doing the John & Paul singing, song-writing thing. And this fab four are going from strength to strength with their full-length debut album Don’t Make Me Wait about to be launched (January 16th 2007). Locksley are poised – and possibly destined — for super-stardom.