Bio

'A rock and roll journey of discovery and enlightenment'

The Killermeters are proud to introduce their self titled album, 'The Killermeters.'

Born out of a labour of love, this 11-track album is the first in their 40-odd year history and honours the past, musical accomplishments, friendships, relationships and offers an exciting insight into their current musical direction.

The band brings together band founder Vic 'Vespa' Szczesnowicz (vocals, bass), Mick Moore (guitars), drummer, percussionist and tech whizz Steve Dutton and Aussie Martin (guitars, vocals, harmonica and dulcimer).

The Killermeters' album also boasts a superb cast of additional musicians - Claire Helm (backing vocals), Roger Kinder and Paul Tully (guitars), Steven Beever (Hammond organ) and Jenny O'Sullivan (cello).

Embraced by Mod fans - parents and now their siblings - the band hope this album will appeal to new faces and old.

Drummer and sound engineer Steve, who was instrumental in making the album become a reality, picks up the story of the album's genesis.

"I had been working with sound engineer Simon Shaw recording bits and bobs for other people and then started recording the Meters during rehearsals,"
he said.

"We thought we might have enough for a decent EP, but it turned out we'd a lot more material than that and so we focused on an album."

With songs predominantly written by Vic working closely with Steve to capture the essence, vision and sound, the duo formed a formidable partnership to get this album show on the road. As the project developed Mick and Aussie got more involved in the creative process. By the time the recordings were completed it had become a true band effort.

The band utilised their rehearsal space - Steve's photographic studio in Dewsbury - to create a recording studio which allowed the band to experiment and create... almost at their leisure.

Steve said:

"The album's been about four years in the making. The Meters have always been about creating a great live experience and so to focus on different aspects of the recording process, we've had to learn a different discipline.

It started off almost like a cottage industry - I'd record individual parts laid down by the band - and me and Vic would see where we wanted to take the tunes from there.
It's been a dream to work with Claire (backing singer).
We initially asked her to join Vic on a couple of tracks - but you can hear her on most of the album now. I thinks it's really lifted the sound.”

He added:

"We've definitely moved the Meters' sound forward. We've added backing vocals, dulcimer, Hammond organ and even a cello on some tracks.
"But while this album has a fuller sound, I think we've still been faithful to what The Killermeters have always been about.

"For me the album is a natural evolution. It has evolved over four years - some tracks didn't make the final cut. For example, we've had to form our own quality control. 'Hey that's a great song, but it's not The Killermeters - and that can be quite a challenge to let something go. Other songs, however, we've beefed up and they made the final mix.

"For me, during the course of four years, it has been about evolving the band's sound while remaining true to fans of The Killermeters. I'm really pleased with it."

Vic was more pragmatic and said:

"We use Steve's studio space, so it doesn't cost us a penny and we became the laziest band in the world.

"We didn't have to hire recording space which made us drag it out a bit. We had the desk, monitors, mics and a fairly basic recording studio all set up - and off we went.

"It began in fits and starts really. We'd record a couple of tracks then lose momentum with holidays and gigs getting in the way.

"I guess we took the DIY ethic from the punk scene."

Vic added:

"It's been a great learning curve with the key to recording being 'when do we stop?'
"Our sound engineer Simon was a great help and we adopted his rule of thumb. He'd say to us 'Is it an 8 out of 10 lads?' If we all agreed then we knew to stop tinkering and let it go. I guess it's like being a painter ... when do you know when to stop?"

"Working with Claire has been a revelation. I wanted some extra vocals on some, tracks - boo wops or sha la las - but Claire came in, did her own thing harmonising over my vocals and contributed in ways which we hadn't thought of. It's developed our sound, making it richer, fuller and warmer and really enhances the experience."

"It's quite an eclectic record. We decided early on to let's play what we really like playing ... take Candy Apple Red - I wanted to create an American West Coast sound while on another track there's a 70's rock band going on there.

"To keep The Meters' sound we recorded using our original gear - Marshalls, Voxs, Rickenbackers, Fenders, Dunlop Cry Babys and Fuzzboxes and kept away from samples.
"All instruments were played live and recorded live.

"We also had this collective idea going on in the background where if we needed extra musicians we'll call on them. We weren't precious about sticking as a four-piece. If it sounds good we're using it no matter where it comes from and Roger, Paul (guitars) and Steve on the Hammond organ have been magnificent.

"Ultimately we just wanted to make the best record we could with the resources we had and without spending too much money."

Vic added:

"The album has really been a personal journey for me - a real rock and roll journey of discovery and enlightenment.

"From sitting on my sofa, strumming my guitar and creating songs - to them appearing on vinyl. Wow!

"Now I'm sending the baby out into the big wide world and I hope everyone enjoys it."

The Killermeters have breathed new life into their musical traditions, mixed it up, while remaining true to their core and the universal language of rock and roll.