To those looking in on Razorlight today, their seemingly swift journey from London bar-band scene to huge cultural phenomenon has been a miraculous ascendance. For the band themselves it was exactly what should have happened according to the dream script they wrote as they formed their ideas four years ago in a run down rehearsal room in East London.
From the start Razorlight set out to prove that the lineage of classic bands had not come to an end. They knew their history. They knew the moment. They wanted to set the bar higher. They would not suffer from the UK malaise of indifferent performers with mistaken attitude. In Bjorn, Carl and Andy they had three amazing musicians and, in Johnny, a unique front man and true rockstar who combined the ability to mesmerise on stage with timeless songwriter craftsmanship.
Through early 2004 Razorlight had paid dues, gigging at bars and on support tours. By late 2004 they were playing roof tops and causing London traffic jams. Swiftly they overtook the bands who were being championed as London music scene leaders and, when Razorlight's debut album came out in June 2004 first day sales took it to number 1 and stopped every UK guitar band in its tracks.
‘Up All Night' detailed the lifestyle and defined what was possible. You could know the big city from subculture to subway, and still have hits. ‘Golden Touch' was a huge hit. It took them onto prime time TV for a momentous Parkinson performance with a choir of gospel singers. The awards that came in 2005 - Best New Band from Q Magazine, Best New Band from NME - played catch up to the million people who'd bought the album for songs like ‘Stumble And Fall' or ‘Vice' and superlative live performances like the band's two night stand at the cavernous Alexandra Palace.
In late 2005 Razorlight went to ground in London, stockpiling songs for their second album with producer Chris Thomas, the legendary figure behind some of the best records ever made - The Beatles, The Sex Pistols, The Pretenders, Pink Floyd, Roxy Music. This time the songwriting was sweeter and sadder but with no loss of energy, ranging from the dance floor oblivion of ‘In The Morning' to the storytelling drama of ‘Los Angeles Waltz' (inspired by a lost night in LA after pulling a show at the El Rey when Johnny lost his voice).
With Johnny and Chris Thomas pushing each other in the studio and Andy Burrows coming in as a co-writer on ‘America' and ‘Fall To Pieces', the sessions took the band to the next level, creating one of the great international pop records of the new decade. The editor of Q Magazine announced in his five star review that the band's new record was "the best guitar album since Oasis's ‘Definitely Maybe'".
Titled simply ‘Razorlight' the album shot to number 1 in the chart, opening up a new phase for the band. First single ‘In The Morning' went to number 2. The follow up ‘America' proved to be a monster hit, taking on all comers at radio, holding the number 1 UK airplay slot for weeks, and topping the single charts. A heart-stopping song of love and confusion set in the USA, ‘America' attained the summit of airplay and singles charts around the world. The release of further singles "Before I Fall To Pieces" and the "Hold On" have served to see Razorlight dominate the airwaves and last summer's festival headline slots have further established the band as one of the UK's most important and successful of recent years. Now all they want is the world.