A SWERVEDRIVER, in American slang, is "a social deviant, who's always swerving his responsiblilities, never keeping to the straight and narrow, always running from thing".
SWERVEDRIVER the hand, however are four indie guys in dreadlocks who formed in Oxford at the end of 1988.
"We all sat dowmn at six in the morning after a rehearsal and said, "If we're going to do it, we might as well seriously go for it and become a great band."
Since then, of course, they've become the latest signings to the coolest record label
in the world, Creation. How did this extrodinary piece of luck come about?
Mark from Ride ( a great band, but their hair needs to be just a bit longer!) was in L.A. with House of Love, crusing around in back of a limo
, listening to our tape. He and Guy Chadwick were going, "Hey! This is amazing!" and they got in touch as soon as they came back.
As yet, the only product of this deal is the "Son Of A Mustang Ford" single, a chromium-plated piece of automobile romanticism. Imagine "Bat Out Of Hell" played by Dinosaur Jr, "Born To Run" played by Husker Du. Imagine the sound of James Dean's mangled chassis. But what's it all about? I shouldn't asked.
"Oh, what a lyric, man! It! It's about driving in the desert..."
"No, I always thought it's about one man's love for his machine. That's why there's a crash at the end. The only way he can make love to his machine is to crash it."
"So the guy who tells the story is actually dead..."
Ah, so it's a "Leader Of Th Pack or "Tell Laura I Love her" for the stagediving generation.
"A state of transition. You're driving away from something, but you're driving towards something too..."
Are you attracted to the whole American rock'n'roll mythology
"Yeah, definitely. The idea downing a few beers in a bar somewhere and crusing off down the highway with some really loud music - it's
the classsic rock'n'roll formula. Cars and girls. From day one, Chuck Berry, to yesterday. A rolling stone gathers no moss..."
Rock without brakes. Swervedriver: a great band, but not one to hitch a ride with.
Originally Appeared in Melody Maker, August 11, 1990
Copyright © Melody Maker.