When the support acts for Rivals Schools’ comeback tour were announced, Thrash Hits. com was intrigued to see Exeter punk-upstarts, The Computers, on the bill. Hugh Platt caught up with the band to talk about life so far.
“We saw so many car crashes that whenever you got to a venue you thanked God you were still alive,” says frontman, Alex Kershaw, of the band’s recent tour in Poland. “Just getting from venue to venue was insane. They don’t have motorways!”
When you see The Computers live, with their punk rock riffs as big as anything by The Bronx and an ear for doo-wop, rockabilly melody delivered with the speed and intensity of an illegal cluster bombing, it’ll be you thanking God that you made it to the venue.
Interestingly, the four-piece, completed by drummer Will Wright, guitarist Sonny Crawford and bassist Nic Heron, have a killer unique selling point. “I wanted to form a hardcore band that wasn’t strictly a hardcore band,” explains Alex.
“We all love Sick Of It All and Black Flag, but there are already brilliant hardcore bands out there and I wanted to do this other thing.” This other thing? “We’re also fully into rock ‘n’ roll music like Elvis Costello, so we tried to blend those two elements together. It was completely pre-meditated.”
Despite their digital namesake, the band remains somewhat sceptical of embracing the internet as their prime method for world domination. “The internet means everyone can be into everything and get all the clothes and gear that goes with it. There’s no need to work at anything,” bemoans Alex.
The Computers by Owen Richards
Alex Kershaw lets rip
Alex Kershaw gets intimate with the fans
Will has put his faith in tried-and-tested methods. “We don’t really think about stuff like that; we really think about playing shows. Most people find out about us being seeing us, rather than hearing us on the internet.”
At least until Alex cheekily butts in: “Or maybe on Radio 1”. That’s because the band caught the ear of the Radio 1 Punk Show’s Mike Davies. Considering how quickly they grabbed attention, they’ve every right to be smug. “We did it before we had ten songs,” Alex continues.
“Mike Davies got hold of our two-track single that we recorded when we had four songs, and just started playing it. Not only did he keep on playing it but he kept going on about how much he loved it! We got an email asking us to do a session for the Radio 1 Punk Show? We wanted to do that more than anything else in the world.”
Despite British punk music enjoying the effects of the Gallows-led renaissance, neither Alex nor Will have any delusions to sweeping rock megastardom – Alex’s declaration that “I’d love to release on something like Swami [Records], John Reis from Rocket From The Crypt’s record label” is as close to fantasising about the future as they get.
While they might not be on Swami just yet, the band are putting out a mini-album later this year on legendary UK label Fierce Panda – and it looks set to be incendiary.
Visit The Computers on MySpace. All photos by Owen Richards.