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Forward Russia

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Tom Woodhead (vocals/synth), Rob Canning (bass), Katie Nicholls (drums), and Whiskas (guitar) create the angst-ridden post-punk-inspired sound of ¡Forward, Russia! Formerly of Black Helicopters, Canning and Woodhead joined siblings Nicholls and Whiskas in their native Leeds, England, in 2004 to form the indie rock quartet and their own label, Dance to the Radio. ¡Forward, Russia! toured the U.K. incessantly during their first year together while also issuing their debut, a split single with This Et Al, in spring 2005. "Nine" sold out in just one week and BBC Radio 1 DJ Steve Lamacq immediately hyped ¡Forward, Russia!'s frantic energy on his 6 Music station. "Thirteen/Fourteen" followed in August and did equally well, but ¡Forward, Russia! landed in the U.K. Top 40 with "Twelve" and the "Nine" reissue in early 2006. That spring, ¡Forward, Russia! joined the Automatic, the Long Blondes, Howling Bells, and Boy Kill Boy for the NME New Music Tour. Give Me a Wall marked their LP debut in May; its stateside release for Mute followed in September. For their second album, Life Processes, the band moved to Cooking Vinyl and teamed up with producer Matt Bayles — who also worked with Mastodon and Pearl Jam. The album, which boasted a heavier, more expansive sound than Give Me a Wall, was released in spring 2008 in Japan and the U.K., and in the U.S. that summer via Mute.

Top Songs


2004 in Leeds, England

Years Active: