Morning Parade are Steve Sparrow (vocals/guitar), Chad Thomas (guitar), Phil Titus (bass), Ben Giddings (synth) and Andy Hayes (drums).
Morning Parade hail from the Essex satellite town on Harlow, and they know the pleasures and frustrations of towns like that better than most. As Steve explains of the town, which is still struggling to adjust to the decline of its manufacturing base: "Harlow's like a weird bubble where no-one really enters and no-one really leaves".
Solace of sorts came in the town's one live music venue, The Square where Steve and Phil, gradually joined by the three friends who would become their bandmates in a nascent band scene. But even there they felt like outsiders. Like any youth movement through the ages, the kids of Harlow fell into two camps, the mainstream "townies" and the skate-punk "grebos", with little room for anyone inbetween. And of course, inbetween was exactly where they found themselves. "I used to dress like a chav but I used to try and go to The Square… I didn’t really like the metal stuff but I wasn’t into UK Garage or 2 Step or anything like that either. I was in a bit of a weird place because I didn't know which I wanted to be. There was a little group of us that kind of did that because we didn't know which one we were".
The first song where they really cracked it was with the urgent "A&E", so it stands to reason that this will be the song that launches them onto the national stage. Yet while it’s powered energetically along by 4/4 dynamics, this is no "new rave" fantasia. Like all their songs it’s rooted in the world they know. "It was about one of my friends who was seeing this girl, and basically she was having another relationship with somebody else at the same time as him but convincing him that it wasn’t happening so he couldn’t tell the difference between the paranoid and the reality and it really wound him up. It’s about these scenarios unfolding in your head really fast".
Even their title was inspired by their surroundings. On returning bleary-eyed from the forest raves of their teens, they would be struck hard, possibly giggling, by the contrast between those party hordes returning by tube in the opposite direction of those on the commuter belt. Chad remembers: "Whether it's the people on the way to work or the social aftermath, you’re always in this morning parade".
It wasn’t long before the band were noticed. After being picked up by Wildlife Management (Arctic Monkeys) they signed with Parlophone and were quietly left to grow into the band they could be. They recorded their debut album with producer Jason Cox at Studio 13, and in September the world will be able to hear the fruits of their labours in the form of the trance-inducing "Under The Stars", the tearjerking "Headlights" and the grand, expansive "Speechless". And now they're ready to take their message out to the world.
…Morning Parade managed not only to seemingly borrow the strobe-lighting from Muse, but also their presence. With every track came a crescendo of rock rioting, shaking the foundations with their perfect mega-bucket combo of dance, alternative, and electro. In fact, I think someone needs to put Mulder and Scully on the phone, Morning Parade are not from this world. They’ve evolved into a new species of reverberbrates.