Pontypridd, Wales. 2009 - Dane Campell and Tom Jenkins (drums and vocals respectively) have a dream. A dream not dissimilar for many young men… form a band, record an album, hit the road. More often than not, this dream is only ever that. For the newly formed Straight Lines though, with the addition of Todd Campbell (formerly of Dopamine) on bass and James Pugh on guitar duty, it was not long before reality really struck home.
As much through adopting punk-rock DIY ethics as it was juggling the financial implications of a new young group recording an album, the band holed themselves up in Todds’ home-made recording studio in his garage. Bucking the trend of many bands of similar ilk, they wrote, produced, mixed and mastered their debut 12 track offering Persistence In This Game before they even played one live show. An intense month of hard studio work paid off. Having taken their recording duties seriously, it didn’t take long for a serious label to show interest. Xtra Mile Recordings (home to Frank Turner, The Xcerts, Reuben) released the album in early 2010 launching with the ferocious lead single vs. The Allegiance. Expertly blending pop/punk melodies with big riffs and sweetly apt concisely delivered lyricism, the press weren’t too far behind.
No band of course survives without their live pedigree and evidence of the bands exhilarating live performance is in abundance. Before 2010 was out Straight Lines had supported bands such as Kids In Glass Houses, The Automatic and InME as well as providing lead support for Motorhead at Hammersmith Apollo. The band even found time to fit in a BBC Radio 1 Introducing live session at the seminal Maida Vale Studios. As if the year could not get any better, the legendary SXSW Festival played host to no less than 3 performances by Straight lines, Austin Music Hall, Latitude’s Welsh Music Day and The Opal Devine opening for The Fall of Troy.
As if the year could not be any busier, the band brought their hectic summer to a close, by once again hitting the road, sharing stages with The Get Up Kids, Frank Turner and The Xcerts, also appearing at Download Festival, Sonisphere Festival, Camden Crawl and Slam Dunk Festival before hitting the road with Failsafe. With a short gap in between they also had short runs with fellow Welshman Attack!Attack! and American ska heroes Less Than Jake. They finished 2010 with the completion of their now second headline tour.
Having spent a large chunk of 2011 in the studio demoing and recording their second album ‘Freaks Like Us’ (once again with Todd Campbell at the helm) between support slots with The Subways, and Funeral For A Friend , Straight Lines are on an upward spiral that doesn’t look set to finish anytime soon. With a new video/single ‘Half Gone’ (out Feb 13th through Xtra Mile Recordings) now online at www.straightlinesband.com and the album to follow on April 23rd, 2012 might just be the year for Straight Lines.
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