A lot of bands practice in old, cold buildings or garages. This is a temporary solution. Eventually, the owner wants to tear down the building and construct something profitable and parents eventually act on the desire to use their garage for its intended purpose, to keep their cars out of the weather. So securing a long-term rehearsal space is no small feat.
When Futureheads began, they were a trio consisting of Hyde, Jaff and drummer Pete Brewis. They used the Sunderland (England) City Detached Youth Project building for rehearsals. Both Hyde and Brewis worked at the Youth Project, which was designed to keep young people off the streets.
Millard, who had been in a band with Jaff, soon joined and the group made its debut in '00. Hyde's kid brother, David, replace Brewis.
Futureheads self-titled debut appeared in '04 with Gang Of Four's Andy Gill producing five tracks. While "Decent Days And Nights" got used on a video game soundtrack (Burnout 3: Takedown On PlayStation 2 and Xbox), it was a cover of Kate Bush's "Hounds Of Love," the following year, that drew the most attention. The song cracked the U.K. Top 10 in its first week and later was named the best single of the year by NME, the trend-hopping British music magazine. That success led to an opening slot on the Foo Fighters' U.K. tour.
Later in '05, Futureheads issued the EP "Arena." The group's full-length sophomore album "News And Tributes" featuring "Skip To The End" hit a year later.
On occasion, the Futureheads come off like the Clash from their "Should I Stay Or Should I Go" period. It's a fun, irresistible sound. Hyde's full-throat vocals can not be taken entirely seriously and that's probably the intent. And unlike most bands with Punk leanings, the Futureheads rely heavily on backing vocals to fill out the songs.
"News And Tributes" opens with the catchy, "Yes/No," a clever shot of indecision. The pop-oriented "Skip To The End," "Fallout" and "Burnt" make a strong impression. The vocals on "Return Of The Bererker" are mixed way down. While that was obviously intended, it doesn't work.
"Decent Days And Nights" is the standout track of the Futureheads' self-titled debut but there are several other noteworthy tracks including "Carnival Kids," "A To B," "Robot" "The City Is here For You To Use," and "Trying Not To Think About Time."
The Futureheads take on "Hounds Of Love" is available as a CD single.