Back in November we introduced you to the United Kingdom of Rock—an upstart band in Leatherhead, England. Led by Matt Fielder, they are fed up with Britain’s poor showing in recent years. In 2013 Bonnie Tyler came 19th. In 2012 Englebert Humperdinck came 25th. It was only in the relatively unknown Jade Ewen that the UK managed to crack the Top 5 back in 2009.

Well, a month after UKR unveiled their song, sources close to the BBC selection process say that officials are actually considering the band for Eurovision 2014. The decision will be made in January, and the band members are on eggshells waiting to hear. We recently caught up with Matt to find out why he thinks the Beeb should give the group a chance.

http://youtu.be/bjF60S16tgk

Why should the BBC go with an undiscovered group as opposed to an estbalished act like Bonnie or Engelbert?

It’s a question only they can answer. But the rules of the competition state that it should be open to everybody. We are nobody and everybody at the same time! The song contest has changed over time. In fact every year since the competition started, boundaries have changed to allow more newly formed Eastern Bloc countries to compete. We haven’t really deviated from the same tried and tested route, never attempting a radical or different approach. So this year why the hell not? Anyway, we’re not totally undiscovered. We’ve all tread the boards and put in a shift or two! Our lead guitarist Laurence Archer has played with UFO, jammed with a few greats, and was indeed the first guitarist the late great Phil Lynott turned to after Thin Lizzy split up to form grand slam.

UKR Eurovision 2014 4What inpired you to write this song?

Frustration, really. Eurovision is a massively watched tradition in this country and every year we get ridiculed. People always try to make excuses that it’s political or that because the BBC sponsors it we get a bye straight through to the final missing the semis! But I think it’s much simpler than that. The songs just haven’t been good enough. We have a magnificent musical heritage that’s famous throughout the world. But this is never reflected in our songs and we come across like we don’t take it seriously enough. So I want to change that perception and remind Europe of this and to throw our hat back in the ring as serious contenders!

How long did it take you to write your song?

Not long. It kind of wrote itself. I had an old riff in my head! I was inspired by the London Olympics. And [during a recent medical procedure] I was lying under a CTU scan and the chorus and vocals came to me! The rest, particularly the tribute second and third verse and bridges, were written walking from London’s Waterloo station to Farringdon along the Thames every day to work. Tried to reference as many British icons as I could!

Did you bring this band together specifically for Eurovision, or have y’all performed gigs together before?

I’ve played with Pete the drummer before. He’s Danish and in a band. I’ve known Rob for years, along with Laurence from the circuit! Will, who produced it and is currently working with Katy B, is my nephew and a great guitarist in his own right. AJ on bass is a mate of his playing in local bands. They’re all up for this and ready for the call to arms if and when it should come. It’s worth mentioning there is also an album of equally triumphant fist pumping anthems ready and waiting to record if the demand is there.

UKR Eurovision 2014 6How long have you all known each other?

Well in truth we don’t really. We all just share the same ethos and love of great music. Although as I said me and Rob go way back, as I do with Pete and Laurence just separately. We are just United in the Kingdom of Rock!!

 

What message would the BBC be sending to Europe if it went with you?

“Ok, Ok, Europe you win! We get it. We are very sorry for whatever it is we have done to upset you all! Now please will you be our friends again? You will? Oh good. Right now pull back your lug holes and have some of this……..

What do you do when you’re not making music? 

We all have our own separate musical projects and bands that we are involved in. I personally work in media and also DJ and do kids and adults parties to let off steam. Laurence is involved in TV and film production. Pete is involved in property. Rob teaches music. Will is producing for Katy B at the moment. And I think AJ plays in a few local bands and does session work.

UKR Eurovision 2014 1Have any of you ever been to Denmark?

Yes. I think we all have certainly. Me and Pets have played in Copenhagen with Hurricane Jane a few times. Love the city and the people! We even helped launch the Tub org Christmas beer one year. What a rider that was! Tusen Takk!!

Anything else you want to emphasise?

Look we just wanna to give it one helluva shot and try and convince the BBC to give the song contest back to the people. Then go out to Denmark, make some friends, remind Europe of our great musical heritage, restore some pride and have some fun! We strongly believe we have a song that can win it and intend to leave our guts on that stage! Then to quote a very famous Danish prince, we’ll really see if it’s ‘to be or not to be!’ That’s really the question! In January the BBC will make their choice.

You can keep up-to-date on the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following the team on Twitter @wiwibloggs and by liking our Facebook page.

Photos courtesy of Matt Fielder / United Kingdom of Rock

29 Comments
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Leon
7 years ago

I really love the idea behind all of this and the band’s respectful attitude and knowledge of the contest. The UK NEEDS representatives like this with the same amount of passion. The execution is, unfortunately, shoddy and cheap. You can’t say all of those things, say the songs before weren’t good enough and then come back to this dated and over-patriotic song. The band-name needs to change, the production needs bringing to 2014 and the lyrics need to be rearranged to not sound so ridiculously UK-centred. The UK isn’t voting for this, Europe is! I do have to say, it… Read more »

karl
karl
7 years ago

i’ve got mixed opinions about this. on one hand it’s hurting my ears and won’t do well at all cos rock songs don’t do well at Eurovision. and if the BBC wanna go down this route they need to work on the lyrics. BUT we’ve not done a rock song for eons and hey what’s the harm in trying something new for one year. obviously well known singers singing ballads don’t work for us. they would need to work on the song tho cos ATM it sounds messy.

Arianna
7 years ago

Mixed on them. Really depends on the song they bring. I’m afraid if they go the rest of Europe will be like, “Oh, the UK is going old school again *disregards*”

Craig
Craig
7 years ago

Well i gets my vote !

Michael
Michael
7 years ago

Love it The United Kingdom of Rock what sn indpired idea!!

Mark Watson
Mark Watson
7 years ago

This is like diarrhea – It’s catchy, but it’s still s**t

Diane
Diane
7 years ago

I personally want to see the breakthrough act from established artist to represents the UK in 2014, just like Margaret Berger and Anouk did this year. And I like to see Alt-J, Little Boots, or maybe Delphic in Eurovision someday represents UK…

EurovisionFanss
EurovisionFanss
7 years ago

I really don’t think UKOR have a chance. If I’m honest… nul pointe.

My honest opinion is that the BBC will send someone who will not require too much staging (someone older, less mobile). I hear Tom Jones would do it if approached. *rolls eyes*

Gavin Brockwell
7 years ago

I can see it picking up a few more votes than usual. But it sounds a bit dated… 80s and Meat loaf. I don’t really like singing about ourselves either… Bit up ourselves? It’s got some appeal, but it’s kind of not my thing.

Hmmmmm…. Neither was Bonnie, or Humpledink, or josh to my taste. Actually Jade was a bit watery… I want the Sonia, Ruffel and Gina days back!

Alex
Alex
7 years ago

“Bet They’ve never heard of half the Great British bands mentioned in the lyrics as well.”

If this is the case, it may very well be true as well for most Europeans outside the country…

If only the UK could just get Adele to represent the country. Instant win.

Leon Ash
Leon Ash
7 years ago

Blimee! Just reading some of the comments on here no wonder we get our arses kicked every year! The ‘playstation generation’ Simon Cowell”s fodder or ignorant wannabe music Students trying to run down the first decent song we’ve put out in eons! I’m quite sure if this is chosen by the BBC they”ll make the band go back into the studio to rerecord it with one of their own producers and money. This is a great song and idea and probably goes over most of their heads anyway! Bet They’ve never heard of half the Great British bands mentioned in… Read more »

Ben Gray
Ben Gray
7 years ago

The intentions are good but the song is naff.

Alex
Alex
7 years ago

Somehow I’d imagine that this song would get a few more points than “Mala dama,” but only a few. The production is incredibly dated. This is the kind of stuff I always switch away from when I listen to the radio. It’s not bad, but it’s not too inspiring. The kind of rock I’d prefer to see in Eurovision is something more like Mor ve Otesi.

Anthony
Anthony
7 years ago

@Dar, The BBC turned Hurts down in 2012. Sadly, I doubt Auntie Beeb would give them a second chance.

Dar
Dar
7 years ago

HURTS …. Please …. Please …please….. Would be beyond amazing

Ben
Ben
7 years ago

Pretty sure the BBC can do better than them…send a young indie-rock artist if you want to go in this direction.

Dhani
Dhani
7 years ago

haha i love how most of the comments here is negative just because it is not another boring random female dance-singer, thats apparently the only thing that makes eurovision fans happy…. come on, this would be so cool if this band represented uk! that would be something different which is great!!! you have to be open for other genres than dull pop

Dar
Dar
7 years ago

Total disaster .. Just send little boots and be done with it and work on a decent song ASAP … How desperate is this ..

D
D
7 years ago

Please no. I’m not a fan with rock music and it’s been shown that most rock bands don’t make it far, it’d be a bad decision. Please just go with a more mainstream artist and you might do better, the United Kingdom isn’t successful enough to make risks like this.

Z24
Z24
7 years ago

I’m all in for these guys. But I need a guarantee of an explosive show.

hetalialover
hetalialover
7 years ago

Send Little Boots already!!!!

Padraig Muldoon
Admin
7 years ago

Just NO! NO, NO, NO, NO! Times a billion!!!! 😡

Anthony
Anthony
7 years ago

Don’t forget that maNga also did well at Eurovision Michael, despite missing out on the top spot in 2010.

Sorry, but I fear juries will cost them dearly if the UK were to send this rock group.

Zachary Thomas
7 years ago

How many times do I have to say it? JUST SEND PIXIE LOTT! She’s not too famous, but she’s not too unknown either! She’d do well!!

JulianaESC
JulianaESC
7 years ago

Send Katherine Jenkins to Eurovision.

beccaboo1212
7 years ago

The British Bon Jovi 😛

wolfboy
wolfboy
7 years ago

I like the idea of NEW talent. No more Bonnies. no more Engelberts. Please.

SQFan
SQFan
7 years ago

Because Albania’s ‘we are the only rock group left’ *totally* worked last year. For crying out loud, just send an X-Factor reject or something.

Mike
7 years ago

ESC rule number one: don’t send bands to Eurovision (only when they are monsters from Finland you’ll have a good chance)