The Rumble Strips biography
The Rumble Strips were an English band from Tavistock, Devon. The band took their name from rumble strips, which are small, continuous lines of bumps along the edge of a road. Having known each other since childhood, a precise conception date for the band doesn't really exist. The current line-up has been together since 2004 and are now based in London. The band were signed to Fallout Records, a subsidiary of Universal Island Records.
Lead singer Charlie Waller was involved in music from an early age, initial inspirations included Lou Reed's Transformer and bands such as Adam and the Ants. He moved to London for art college and played with his band from Devon, the Action Heroes. After the Action Heroes realised they had been playing together for 9 years, they felt the need for change. With the former keyboardist - Harry Dwyer (who would later go on to direct most of the Rumble Strips' videos) spending too much time on his Morris Minor, Waller began writing and playing again with former Tavistock friend Tom Gorbutt, and also recruited Henry Clark, (coming as standard) the drummer from the Action Heroes Matthew Wheeler, The Rumble Strips were formed, the year was 2004. Also during this time, Charlie was one of two frontmen in Vincent Vincent and the Villains with flatmate and fellow singer/songwriter Vincent Vincent. The strain of playing in two bands eventually led to Waller quitting both groups before being coaxed back to the Rumble Strips. Vincent Vincent wrote the song "Johnny Two Bands" about Waller's departure. Old schoolfriend and former bandmate of all the Rumbles (from the Mother Eating Blackberries and Action Heroes) Sam Mansbridge was brought in to the lineup at the end of 2006 to beef up the live sound, playing bass and the big Rumble Drum that is such a feature of the band's live act.
2005-2007Fortunes for the band would take a turn for the better when out of the blue, independent record label Transgressive Records - who have produced singles for The Young Knives and Regina Spektor - would offer to produce the band's first single. This would reunite Waller with the band, and together they released "Motorcycle" on 12 December 2005. Waller said at this time "It was like, I have nothing to lose - I'm working for my uncle on a building site. What's to lose?". The band moved further into the public eye with a number of key support dates for Dirty Pretty Things and fellow Transgressive artists The Young Knives in early 2006, and then the release of their second single, "Hate Me (You Do)" on 5 June. A further tour supporting The Zutons, and the release of the band's first EP, Cardboard Coloured Dreams, followed this in November 2006.
The new year brought the Rumble Strips their first move into the charts, with their release of "Alarm Clock" on 19 March 2007 reaching #41 in the UK Singles Chart. The band were asked by NME to play their biggest headline tour to date, as headliners of the 2007 Topman NME New Music Tour throughout May 2007. The tour saw them play a number of venues around the country with other new bands Pull Tiger Tail, Blood Red Shoes and The Little Ones. The band released a live EP recorded whilst on the tour containing the tracks "Oh Creole", "Alarm Clock", "My Oh My" and previously unreleased track, "London". The band re-released "Motorcycle" on 4 June 2007. The single failed to reach the previous heights of "Alarm Clock", charting slightly lower at #46. Two 7-inch vinyls were also released of the track, containing b-side "My Oh My". A misprint was made on some of these vinyls where 1000 copies were distributed labelling the b-side on the opposite side to the one listed. These are already being considered collector's items, even by the band themselves.
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