BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese Welsh

 You are in:  Entertainment: Music
Front Page 
UK Politics 
TV and Radio 
New Media 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Commonwealth Games 2002

BBC Sport

BBC Weather

Tuesday, 12 March, 2002, 12:38 GMT
Brothers plug in for stardom
test hello test
By BBC News Online's
Ian Youngs

Amid the burgeoning UK guitar scene, two young brothers have been picked out by many as the most likely to become full-blown heroes.

Brothers Alex (left) and Tom White (right) with keyboardist Steve Large
Brothers Alex (left) and Tom White (right) with keyboardist Steve Large
The NME awarded The Electric Soft Parade's latest album, Holes in the Wall, nine out of 10, announcing that the band "may just have saved British pop music".

A single, Silent to the Dark, has just become their first UK top 25 hit, and their ability to mould rock sounds has made them stand out from other up-and-coming bands.

Hailing from Brighton, Sussex, Alex and Tom White are aged just 20 and 17, and this is their fourth album.

But their music and attitudes display a maturity that would not be out of place on rock veterans.

The pair recently supported The Who at the Royal Albert Hall - but, rather than enthusing about being on such a prestigious bill, Alex says the experience was just "all right".

Alex has a desire to create and innovate
Alex has a desire to create and innovate
"Legends etc, great, they were OK," he told BBC News Online. "It was a little bit cabaret."

The fans did not know who they were and did not really care - and Alex thinks they should be past the stage where they have to prove themselves.

"When you first start out, you need to go around the country convincing people. We've done that. We've done it a lot and worked for it," he said.

Young start

Despite the glowing reviews and comparisons to Teenage Fanclub, The Verve and The Pixies, the work is far from over.

But Alex and Tom know little else apart from making music together.

They started banging on pots and pans as children, and became serious about music after putting on weekly gigs at their local cricket pavilion in their early teens.

I was scared people would think it's a bit too sophisticated for a couple of little kids

Alex White
With their band - then called Feltro Media - they made three albums before even winning a record deal, and were central players in a Brighton underground arts scene called Totally Bored that is now bearing fruit.

"We've always been into trying to create a vibe, trying to get a scene on the go," Alex said.

From there, they became The Soft Parade, but soon had to change their name again after complaints from a Doors tribute band who were already using that moniker.

Now that they are on the springboard to the big time, they are on a mission to do something original and lasting - not just sticking to one style or copying the latest fad.

The band hold the world record the fastest-made music video
The band hold the world record the fastest-made music video
And Alex does not want people to think that the variation and quality of the album was down to anybody else, insisting that he and Tom were listed on the sleeve as the main producers.

"I was scared people would think it's a bit too sophisticated for a couple of little kids and assume someone else had done it," he said. "But people seem to be well into it."

He is still not satisfied with the five singles they have released since signing to DB Records, though, because "they're not changing music or anything like that".

High aspirations indeed, but parts of the album are more "forward-looking", he says.

Before long, many more fans will be looking forward to what they do.

The Electric Soft Parade
Silent to the Dark
The Electric Soft Parade
There's A Silence
See also:

25 Oct 01 | New Media
Windows XP breaks world record
02 Jan 02 | Music
Sound stars of 2002
Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Music stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Music stories