Say Hello To… Dexters

March 18, 2012

Its hard to be impressed by an indie band in London these days — not to say they’re all watered down, unoriginal units who give off the air that they work in Starbucks and spend all their money at All Saints and American Apparel… — but its a fish bowl with too many fish! No matter how much of a stunner a band is, if they are surrounded by a crowd of ‘similar’ bands, its all too easy to be generic. Too often you can get the impression that ‘you’ve heard it all before’ in this scene. I’m not going to try and tell you that East London’s Dexters are massively different from other bands out there in their genre group. I’m also not going to tell you that you’re going to hear something that will blow your mind and make you think about the world in a different way like never before. No, but I am going to tell you to catch a show, because chances are you’ll have an epic night, you’ll love the music, and you’ll like the lads if you get a chance to speak with them. They’re not life-changing but they are BLOODY good!

The London five piece have been making quite a name for themselves of late, especially in North and East London. They are consistently packing out hipster venues; Koko, Queen of Hoxton, and Purple Turtle; as well as wracking up some pretty impressive support slots along the way. Dexters perform like seasoned pros – but without the airs and graces. If you are looking for a band who care more about their music than whether their t-shirts match; a band that has drive and a ‘no bullsh*t’ attitude [not to say they’re obnoxious because they’re not at all]; then look no further. Their ‘football chant’ style choruses appease the louts in the crowd, while their onstage energy gets the hot girls dancing. Spill your beer on your shirt now to save the hassle later, and say hello to… DEXTERS.

Ngawara Madison caught up with Dexters frontman, Tom Rowlett for a chat, before he headed off with the band on the ‘This Feeling’ National Tour. The full band is comprised of Tom Rowlett (vocals), Matthew Finnegan (bass), Jamie Finnegan  (rhythm guitar/backing vocals), Ben Daboo (lead guitar/backing vocals) and Chris Mardon (drums).

What are your aims as a band?

Tom: Our immediate aim is to get some more songs recorded to a high level. We have a very talented producer on board for that called Jamie Ellis and we will be in the studio early April. The main aim for us is to be a band that people love and a band that lasts.

You guys have been wracking up the notches as far as gigs lately. Ive been to a few of your shows now and the crowds don’t seem to deflate as they often do [go up and down] for other bands. Where do you think the consistent crowd draw is coming from?

Tom: We have been lucky enough to play some really great shows like headlining Koko, club NME, and selling out the Lexington so I suppose the hype would have come from that.

Who would be your ultimate touring companion?

Tom: We would Love to play with the Black Lips – those guys are the nuts live! They put on a proper rock n roll show.

 Does the band have a niche, do you think?

Tom: No not a specific niche. We are a real rock n roll band with big choruses and brash guitars

There is intense competition between UK bands. Its a busy scene! What separates Dexters from the hoards of bands out there all racing for the prize?

Tom: Well we are trying to write songs that speak to people, we ain’t trying to ram our views down peoples throats. We’d rather write songs that people can connect with. We leave everything on the stage! It takes it out of us but we treat every gig as if it’s the most important gig of our lives, and that makes for some amazing nights! Too many bands are just going through the motions in their live shows these days, but the bands that we love proper ‘have it’ on stage. You get the feel that it is the fans and the band in it together

Whats your recording situation like? Any videos?

Tom: As I said we are going in the studio early next month, can’t wait; we’re very confident the tunes will sound mega. We have a video on YouTube of us playing ‘This Feeling’ club night* that is well worth a look. Also, our song “Start to Run” is on our Facebook page as a free download. It’s gotten us some really great feedback.

* Video below.

Is this a group who share the same musical taste or do you ‘meet in the middle’ with your musical influences?

Tom: We are all into guitar music – different aspects and eras of it. As far as bands go, there are too many bands to mention, but the ones that we all absolutely love would be The La’s, The Clash and The Black Lips.

© Ngawara Madison, Music Vice

Dexters – “Start to Run”:

Dexters are supporting The Rifles at the Troxy on 31st of March; supporting Modern Faces at PJ Malloy’s in Dunfermline on 7/8 April and headlining Club Night, ‘This Feeling’, on May 4th at Concrete in Shoreditch, London.

Internet links: Dexters

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