Published: 22/06/2012 11:00 - Updated: 22/06/2012 11:27

Student in tune for Hyde Park gig

Written byBy GORDON CALDER

Asps will be appearing in London with famous names in the music world.
The Asps will be appearing in London with famous names in the music world.

A THURSO musician is to appear with an Edinburgh-based band at a gig in London with such famous names as Tom Jones, Stereophonics, Snow Patrol, Duran Duran and Paolo Nutini.

Michael Barry plays keyboards and synthesizer with six-piece band The Asps who will be appearing at the BT London Live concert in Hyde Park on August 4.

They will be playing three gigs over the course of the day, starting on the main stage in Victoria Park at 1pm before going on to Hyde Park where they will play at 5.20pm and 9.30pm.

"This will be the biggest live event we’ve played and it’s an honour to have been asked to be on the bill," said Michael, who is studying medicine at Edinburgh University.

"It will be a fantastic experience for us to be involved in such a high-calibre event that sees the likes of Duran Duran, Tom Jones, Stereophonics and Snow Patrol take the stage," "We are delighted and privileged to be involved in this event. It will give us the opportunity to play to a wider-range audience than we normally play to and, hopefully, gain new fans along the way. There will be an incredible atmosphere around London with the Olympic Games taking place at that time."

The Asps were formed in 2009 but have undergone a few changes in personnel since then. Their current line-up comprises Michael; Craig Renwick on bass; his brother, Graeme Renwick (saxophone); Paul Dourley on vocals; Chris Simpson on guitar and Lewis Hutchinson on drums.

The Renwick brothers are from Ellon, near Aberdeen, while Paul and Lewis are from Edinburgh. Chris is originally from Glasgow.

Michael has been in The Asps for about 18 months and, according to Craig, has "changed the sound of the band for the better".

"He has a real talent of knowing what fits in a song and helps create our electro-indie-pop sound which has been likened to The Killers," he added.

The Asps recently signed a three-year publishing deal with Sony/ATV after being crowned Scottish champions in the Hard Rock Calling competition.

"We got to the final and competed against 85 bands worldwide for the chance to open for Bruce Springsteen at this year’s Hard Rock Calling Festival in London. Since then we have gained substantial interest from music industry figures and media alike," said Craig.

The band’s single "Keep" has been released on iTunes along with the live tracks recorded at the O2 Academy, Islington.

Meanwhile, The Asps’ debut album is to be produced by legendary record producer Ron Nevison who has worked with such big names as The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, The Who, Bad Company and Kiss.

The band will fly to San Francisco in 2013 to start work on a 10-track album.

BT London Live Hyde Park will be staged over a two-week period and will feature daily performances by a host of big names, including Feeder, Cast and Blur. The shows get under way on July 28 and finish on August 12.

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