About The Spitfires
The Spitfires are a four-piece pop/rock band hailing from Watford, England. Made up of vocalist and guitarist Billy Sullivan, bass guitarist Sam Long, drummer Matt Johnson, and keyboardist Chris Chanell, the Spitfires are known for their dynamic and powerful songwriting, resolute social commentary in their lyrics, and widely admired work ethic. The four friends came together in late 2012 over a mutual love of artists such as the Who, the Jam, and the Small Faces. Naming themselves the Spitfires due to an obsession with modernism and Sullivan's affinity for the aircraft since an early age, the group members got to work writing their own songs inspired by the mod movement of the '60s and the punk scene from the mid- to late '70s, combined with the aural stylings of acts such as the Arctic Monkeys. The band eventually put out its first independent release, the single "Spark to Start," a response to the attitudes and trends of the music industry in the 21st century.
The band demoed more tracks and put out a number of other singles, while also performing nationwide, landing gigs at venues such as Liverpool's Cavern Club and London's 100 Club as well as a slot in the lineup for the Brighton-based punk festival Undercover in 2013. The following year, the band got to work writing and recording its debut-full length effort, Response, released through Catch-22 Records in the summer of 2015. The record was a success, landing a high spot on the U.K. album chart and number six in both the independent and vinyl charts. The album received widespread acclaim, particularly from numerous radio stations across the U.K., citing singles "Stand Down" and "4AM" as highlights and pristine examples of the ensemble's songwriting skills and passion for mod and punk cultures. The Spitfires toured extensively in support of the album and returned in 2016 with their sophomore effort, A Thousand Times. The release was praised for its progressive and cinematic style of songwriting as well as its dub, reggae, ska, and 2-tone influences. The group's third set, Year Zero, arrived in 2018, taking a greater ska influence for its flashier sonics. A fourth album, Life Worth Living, arrived two years later: with jumpy singles "(Just Won't) Keep Me Down" and "Tear This Place Right Down!," the project saw release in June 2020. ~ Rob Wacey