An example of the rapid success of The Samurai Seven can be seen in the way they have climbed from being bottom of the bill at the Aldershot WEC last July to a headlining spot above My Drug Hell in March. Everyone, from the average punter to John Peel, has been captivated by their slick pop-punk tunes and animated live show. They're cool people too, I think their wry sense of humour is really funny at gigs, but maybe that's just me. Whatever, The Samurai Seven are definitely going to be the next Shifty Disco band to succeed. Simon, lead singer and guitarist, and Matt, guitarist and backing vocalist, told me a bit about what it's like being in one of the coolest bands around.
Is there ever any friction in the band between the two brothers?
SIMON: There is never any friction between anyone in the band because no-one ever says anything unless they totally believe it to be true, and if that's the case then it fucking cannot be argued with.
MATT: And you just can't argue with that.
What gave you the idea for the matching suits and synchronised jumping stage antics?
MATT: Before we formed the band we used to go to a lot of gigs and basically got bored of seeing people on stage looking like roadies or punters, standing still and doing lame Oasis impressions. You go and 'watch' a gig after all, so we always knew we wanted to do something visual, even before we started.
SIMON: The suit thing happened completely by accident and we decided to stick with it. Whenever we happen to jump together it is just a coincidence, for which we thank the baby Jesus.
Do you spend a long time perfecting your live performances?
SIMON: We love playing gigs so we do it a lot - that's as far as it goes - no mystery.
MATT: If poncing about with a hairbrush in front of a mirror counts, then I'd have to say about five minutes a day.
Have you had much positive feedback from being on a Fierce Panda compilation?
SIMON: Fuckloads - but the guys that run Fierce Panda are so sound that we would work with them even if it meant no feedback at all.
MATT: Yeah, the whole experience has been brilliant. John Peel played our track a lot and we've had letters from people all over the country as a result of that. The single sold out within a couple of weeks, so we can't complain.
What do you think of the other bands on the Joy Of Plecs EP?
SIMON: I like Fantasmagroover a lot.
MATT: We met The Monsoon Bassoon and Max Tractor at a gig in London recently and they were cool people.
How would you describe your sound?
SIMON: The Beach Boys fighting their way through the crowd at a Dead Kennedys gig.
You recently played your one hundredth gig at the Aldershot WEC. Which has been the best gig you've ever played?
SIMON: The Shifty Disco Poll Winners gig at New Year in Oxford, because I felt like a real pop star.
MATT: That was a great night. I also enjoyed Bedford and Norwich, for no particular reason.
Do you plan to release any more material in the near future?
MATT: We recently released a cover of 'Sound Of The Suburbs' which is the theme tune to the Channel Four programme with John Peel. You can get that from HMV stores for £2.99 at the moment.
SIMON: We'll also be releasing a single and an album before the end of the year, so watch this space.
Issue 3 Contents
Issue 3 Easter '99 © Tim Bragger