STORY WRITTEN BY MICHAEL CHRISTOPHER
For Digital First Media
Breakout U.K. band The Struts have been hanging out in Los Angeles for a few days following their recent late night television debut on Jimmy Kimmel Live! which hosted an explosive performance of their hit single “Could Have Been Me.” The band is one of the latest to be pegged “the next big thing,” but in their case might actually live up to the hype.
“Have You Heard,” the four song EP released in mid-August, has been America’s introduction The Struts’ blend of raucous and bouncy rock and roll reminiscent of early Rolling Stones with a modern sheen. On the heels of the sampler’s popularity, the outfit has found many on their inaugural U.S. dates upgraded to larger venues because of such a high demand.
“It’s almost a little bit overwhelming,” said Struts frontman Luke Spiller, checking in via phone from the City of Angels. “We haven’t really had that much time to think about it since we got to L.A. [because] we’ve been writing nonstop and have been in the studio.”
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The Struts’ profile is sure to be raised come Labor Day weekend, when the indie-rockers will be playing Philadelphia’s Made in America Festival, one day after kicking off their first ever Stateside tour at The Chameleon in Lancaster.
“It’s just great — I can’t really describe it,” Spiller said of the upcoming gigs. “It’s really exciting, a bit overwhelming and a generally making us very excited.”
Now heading into its fourth year, Made in America is a bit of a different beast; The Struts are one of the only rock bands on a bill that boasts acts like headliner Beyonce, former boy band star Nick Jonas, soulful jazz songstress Lili K and legendary hip-hop trio De La Soul.
“I like being the only rock band on the bill — give me more of them, I don’t care,” Spiller said defiantly. “It’s so much better to stand out.”
Being faced with such a unique slot on what has become one of the premier destination festivals in recent years would be intimidating for most bands out there, but Spiller not only welcomes it, he wants The Struts to be the only one from their homeland representing.
“Because people just start to talk about you, good and bad, which are both good. I love those kinds of things, being in the States, I don’t like hearing other British acts, it’s like, ‘We’re the only Brits here; this is our takeover.’”
Editor’s note: Made In America Festival in Philadelphia takes place Sept. 5 and 6 at the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Budweiser Made In America Festival is sold out, organizers reported.