A five-piece from Oxford, Spring Offensive are currently out on their first extensive national tour, promoting the release of free download single 'The First Of Many Dreams About Monsters'. Clocking in at over 14 minutes, you'll be able to get the single by attending one of those dates. Their mini-album 'Pull Us Apart' has won plaudits from all over and you'll be hearing a lot more from them over the next few months. Theo from the band told us about his current favourite things. Name Theo Whitworth, guitarist in Spring Offensive About us We’re a band from Oxford made up of five people, and we spend an unhealthy amount of time together, leading to us developing an exclusive secret language. Listening to Due to our short attention spans (fostered by the age of fast food and videogames I’m sure) we all listen to a different album every week, and at the moment it’s last year’s ‘I Had The Blues But I Shook Them Loose’ by Bombay Bicycle Club. What we like about it primarily is the singer’s vocal boldness, as he’s so obviously unafraid to try out a whole bunch of pitches and potential melodic routes. Some of our favourite debut albums are those that leave a listener confused and exhilarated, offering you the chance to try a variety of musical avenues in much the same way that an all-you-can-eat curry buffet gives stalwart Tikka Masala disciples the chance to sample a Rogan Josh for a change, and this record does just that. It’s not completely life-changing, and we probably won’t be listening to it in five years’ time, but it’s a breath of fresh air in an otherwise Vampire Weekend-dominated indie pop scene. Reading ‘Atomised’ by Michel Houellebecq. I’m about halfway through this book, and although it’s really French and pretentious, it’s pretty good. The writer is one of those people who make a living out of being obtusely controversial, but don’t let the fact that he’s been taken to court for inciting racial hatred put you off. It’s a novel about how the secular and sexual revolutions of the mid-twentieth century have created a generation of people who see everything too schematically and scientifically, and how that leads to breakdowns in human relationships. But as I say, I haven’t finished it, and it might become bad. Don’t take my word for it. Watching ‘Mary Queen Of Shops’. What with Blumenthal’s recent norovirus-gate at his restaurant, and Ramsay slipping out of the UK’s top hundred list, it looks like the cult of high-profile TV chefs might be on the way out, and if this reality show about failing stores and marketing strategies is replacing it, I’ll be happy. Actually, looking over that last sentence, I feel like I might have undersold MQOS a bit. This woman is unbelievably knowledgeable about how to make a business work, and although she acts like a despicable bitch she actually seems to care a lot about whether these stores sink or float. Great brain-dead viewing. Eating I’ve just had what must be something like my hundredth portion of baked beans this year. When we were recording our mini-album ‘Pull Us Apart’, a few of us were eating ‘straight beans’ in the living room, and the engineer came into the room and introduced us to the concept of ‘straight beans with a splash of vinegar’. Since then, I’ve never looked back. Anything Else As I’ve been writing this, we’ve just received a call telling us that Helsing, our van, is fixed. Safe. Promo Info We’re doing these shows in support of our new free-download track, ‘The First Of Many Dreams About Monsters’: 4 August: Birmingham - Sound Bar 5 August: Nottingham - Spanky Van Dykes 6 August: Manchester - Night & Day 7 August: Newcastle - Pumphrey's Cellar Bar 14 August: Brighton - The Hope We’re also doing a few shows with two awesome acts, Our Lost Infantry and Olympians, in Norwich, Aldershot, London and Oxford in October. Have a look at myspace.com/springoffensive for more information. http://www.myspace.com/springoffensive