EMERGING Mackem musicians MoonRunners have a shot at rocking the House of Commons.
The four-piece, who hone their sound at practice rooms in Arts Centre Washington, have made it to the next round of the national Rock The House contest which gives young acts the chance to perform at Whitehall and scoop thousands of pounds worth of recording equipment.
On March 27 they will be among those judged by music business luminaries to decide who will compete at the live music competition at Westminster in June.
Sunderland West MP Sharon Hodgson was asked to select the best up-and-coming band in the area by the competition founder, Tory MP Mike Weatherley.
She said: “For me they stood out from the rest because of the well-crafted songs. I will be wishing them all the best and hoping they follow in the long line of Sunderland’s musical success stories.”
Duncan Allan, performance and exhibitions technician at the Arts Centre Washington, has been working closely with MoonRunners and the three other bands he put forward for Sharon to judge – rap combo Star Siblingz, funk rock outfit Dissident and indie band Bleachbird.
He said: “They are ready to take the band further. I think they stand a good chance, they are brimming with confidence, are hard workers and spend as much time playing. They have a very open, accessible and radio-friendly sound.”
Featuring in Rock The House is the latest coup for the band which features Jordan Deehan on lead vocals, Nathan Hughes on guitar and backing vocals, Owen Morgan on bass and John Timney on drums.
As well as being named as Student Band of the Year last year by website Student Beans, the band, who met at Sunderland University, have had their music featured in movies across the pond. Their tracks Turn It Around and Mirrors, featured in a movie called Never which starred actor Robin William’s daughter Zelda.
Track The Fallen features in a British supernatural thriller called Amy’s Ghost while CSK features in an indie movie shot in Austin, Texas called What’s The Use? Last year, they also supported a number of high-profile artists such as McFly, Bow Wow Wow, Shaun Ryder, No Lights At Lockdown, Tom Hingley, Bleech, Martin Stephenson & The Daintees, and are hoping to support many more this year.
On March 23 they will be supporting X Factor “bad boy” Frankie Cocozza at the O2 Academy in Newcastle. Jordan said: “It should be a great night of music in a sold-out venue.
“We hope the publicity surrounding Frankie Cocozza will rub off on MoonRunners and help promote us to the masses and those in the music industry that matters.”
l A limited number of discounted tickets for the Frankie Cocozza gig are available direct from the band on email firstname.lastname@example.org.