Born and bred in San Diego but currently based in LA, the quartet, which features Matt Lamkin on vocals, co-founder Matty McLoughlin on guitar, David Lantzman on bass and Brian Hill on drums, create a fresh, razor-sharp, no-frills sound that draws in influences from acts as varied as the Stooges, Jonathan Richman, Wire and The Velvet Underground, resulting in fiercely infectious, stripped-down songs which have eagle-eyed A&R types and critics alike falling over themselves with praise. Proof that the band have well and truly arrived was their frenzied reception at this year’s CMJ, as they played 11 packed out shows at a range of venues, from intimate places like Pianos and Don Pedro’s to larger venues like Williamsburg Music Hall and the Bowery Ballroom. Adulatory pieces in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Rolling Stone, Fader and Billboard quickly followed suit, as did hotly coveted support slots with the likes of the Last Shadow Puppets and the Breeders last Autumn.
In addition, their eponymous 12-inch debut EP (which came in one of a kind jacket with bullet holes shot through by the father of a friend, a former NYC cop) sold out almost immediately and has since been re-pressed, complete with brand new tracks, hand typed inserts and silk screened sleeves. The UK got their first blast of the Soft Pack’s potent rock and roll when their double A-side, “Nightlife/ Bright Side” was released through Caspian Records in February 2009, which was followed by their debut UK shows.
PRAISE FOR THE SOFT PACK
“A bright, brittle, insectoid, pan-rattling, speed-skiffle undercut with the pulsating throb of a hundred teenage hard-ons plus wittily oblique lyrics” NME
“Rough and ready revivalists, worth the fuss? Yes” – Sunday Times Culture
“Irresistibly infectious this lot will be poster boys and A-list material by this time next year” – Dazed and Confused
‘The Soft Pack are already twice as good as your current rubbish favourite band and are shortly going to be even better’ — NME
“Blazing, red-hot rock” — Clash
‘(The Soft Pack’s) blurry, disaffected rock reminds us of New York rock when the The Strokes were the biggest band ever, and also Spacemen 3 minus the reverb and plus a bunch of dirt.’ – The Fader