Rob Paul Chapman and Stu Hudson met at university in the late 1990s. The first time they met saw Rob hospitalise Stu with a bizarre fish pizza concoction from one of Hull's more dubious takeaways, which somehow set the tone for Vertigo Green, a deranged, cultish and almost-legendary outfit that was one of the great nearly-bands of the time. Relocating to Leeds after five years of spectacular drunkenness, false starts, broken promises and vast yet unfulfilled potential, Loqui was conceived with the aim of refining and building on the unique sound and live show of Vertigo Green but doing things a little... well, differently
The embryonic Loqui first took the stage at Leeds' tiny Primrose venue in late 2002 and quickly gathered a devoted local following. These were dull times; the underwhelming indie-rock plodders that these days largely represent Leeds' spot on the musical landscape were in the ascendant, and Loqui's multi-layered, melodramatic rock'n'roll racket stood out a mile. After a few years of near-constant hiring and firing which seldom saw the same line-up play more than a couple of consecutive gigs, by 2007 the line-up had settled around a core of Rob (vocals/trombone), Stu (guitars), Lee Boyes (bass/guitar), Dan McGlade (guitar/bass), Sarah Niven (backing vocals), Tash Kozcy (sax/backing vocals) and Rich Laws (drums).
With all the pieces finally in place, the band self-released the double-A sided single 'The Average White Boy'/ 'Round and Round' in early 2008. A fantastic blast of literate, brassy and mildly unhinged superpop, it was lauded by the local media and webzines and sold out almost instantly. That summer saw the band headlining (and, it has to be said, blowing the roof off) the BBC Introducing Stage at the Leeds and Reading Festivals before temporarily slipping off the radar to begin work on their debut single proper.
Hermes Pan is set for release on 7" and iTunes through Sturdy Records on 13 July 2009. A gorgeous slice of pumped-up pop that rolls, swoons and eventually rocks, it encapsulates everything great about this singularly extraordinary band. There's plenty more where that came from. Watch this space...