Sometimes you can have all the ingredients, its just the recipe isn’t quite right. Michael Hopkins, Ronan Kilduff and Andrew Lloyd had played music together since childhood. But for three lads to break out of a crowded Kildare scene would require radical changes, and some tough decisions. For a start, they swapped instruments. Andrew Lloyd picked up the drumsticks while Ronan Kilduff strapped on the bass. The lads bonded like glue and created a dynamic backbone for a pulsating new-wave sound. The biggest transformation, however, came up front.Michael Hopkins stepped out from behind the drum kit to emerge as a frontman whose stirring vocals and resourceful guitar lines would become the swirling centrepiece of this brave new direction. After hitting on the right formula, Planet Parade was born.
They cut their live teeth at the Hard Working Class Heroes festival in Dublin in October 2009. For a debut band, it seemed like a lot of people sat up and took notice.
Planet Parades debut EP, Ghosts To People, was self-released at the end of that year. The standout tracks, Play Fair and Cut The Chord, muscled their way onto the daytime airwaves as the band found fans at Phantom 105.2 and 2fm.The promise and unbridled enthusiasm of the early live shows did not go unnoticed either. Planet Parade opened for Passion Pit, Ellie Goudling, Hockey, Wild Beasts, Bell X1 and Delorentos in a whirlwind first year. They also played the Oxegen festival in Naas, Co Kildare. Now the band is ready to take it to a higher level with their follow-up EP, Zulu Sound. The confidence gleaned from one year of gigging in such exalted company has yielded rich dividends. The first bars of the reggae-tinged opening track Soon Theyll Come and its classic Oi, Oi, Oi, refrain lay a marker for the sonic gems offered up by this remarkable three piece. The lead track, Zulu Sound, further blurs the boundaries of musical genres as anguished verses subside for a chorus with ethereal beauty. Electrical, meanwhile, is made for sweaty, Saturday night dancefloors while Blue Turns Grey showcases the vision and confidence of a band that wont be nailed down. Rock, soul and reggae influences are all there in the mix. But, quite simply, Planet Parade create unapologetic grade-A guitar pop, the kind that cant wait and will not be left behind.
Our ambition for the next year is to record our debut album. We want to continue to grow as a band and be heard by as many people as possible. We hope people can relate to our songs and the passion that goes into writing them, said Michael Hopkins.