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Published on August 13th, 2014 | by The Town Crier


Ugly Love

In these days of X-Factor ballad wannabes and endless computer generated dance tracks, one local band are getting on with having fun, and trying to add some excitement to the indie music scene. Behind all the fun is a lot of hard work, and the appreciation of the loyalty of their fans.

I spoke to ‘Ugly Love’ lead singer Tom Adolph about how the last few years had been for himself, Kit, Sam and Josh. Tom was in another band when he was 16, and then spent the following few years putting on shows at The Forum and working closely with local bands. It was meeting Kit that lead to the start of Ugly Love, who played their first show on January 5th 2012, in The Forum, mainly in front of their friends. In 2013 they released an EP, they sell their merchandise online, have a strong social media presence, and this year have been touring nationally and played at several day-festivals.

I asked if the intention when starting was to have fun, or achieve fame, as now-a-days so many musical acts expect fame to land at their feet. Tom said, “Having fun always comes first, but it mostly comes down to us wanting to do something interesting with our lives. We want to be successful but we’ve always understood the work it takes to get there. Besides, the work bit is really fun. Exciting too.”

Songs with a strong narrative, sometimes about their home town of Tunbridge Wells, punk rock music, and an individual look, has lead to a strong fan following, or as Tom says: “  We have a solid group of people we know that come to almost every gig and passionately follow what we do. To the point that it almost feels insulting to call them ‘fans’ because…without wanting to sound too cheesy…they’re just as important as any of the band members. We’d be utterly stuck without them. We’ve really got to know them over the past year or so, and they’re all really great people. The coolest thing is knowing that we are important to their teenage years, because that probably means that Ugly Love will stick with them in some capacity for the rest of their lives. I love that.” So much so that a loyal group were in Tunbridge Wells ahead of Ugly Love’s appearance at unfest, handing out flyers and attracting attention. When the band had a gig in Brighton cancelled due to a venue closure, they arranged to meet anyone who wanted to, and had a party on the beach instead. Unlike some bands who turn up, play a gig, say Goodnight and disappear, Ugly Love realise positive interact with people enhances everything for everyone. I asked on twitter why people liked the band so much, and most replies contained the words: silly, uplifting, and friendly.

The band will be headling Tunbridge Wells Forum on Friday 8th August, having played Leopallooza Festival in Cornwall on 2nd August, but what’s next after that? “We’re just busting to make a record of some sort now. So we’ll hopefully do that. We’re also starting to try and set the band up to a more professional level too; We’re ready for the next step now. It’ll probably take some time, but we’ll see!”

While their music may not be your ‘sort of thing’, here’s a ‘hats off’ to a group who are positively trying to do something good for themselves, and for others. Follow what’s next: facebook.com/uglyloveband and @UglyLoveBand

Photo by Lauren Harris photography, for Takedown Festival 2014.


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