Bombay Bicycle Club

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This article is about the band. For the restaurant chain this band is named after, see Bombay Bicycle Club (restaurant chain). For the Adelaide hotel, see Ovingham, South Australia.
Bombay Bicycle Club
Bombay Bicycle Club playing at the University of Nottingham
Background information
Origin Crouch End, London, England
Genres Indie rock,[1] indie folk[2]
Years active 2005–2016 (Hiatus)
Labels Island Records
A&M/Octone Records
Members Jack Steadman
Jamie MacColl
Suren de Saram
Ed Nash

Bombay Bicycle Club are an English indie rock band from Crouch End, London, consisting of Jack Steadman (lead vocals, guitar, piano), Jamie MacColl (guitar), Suren de Saram (drums) and Ed Nash (bass). They are guitar-fronted and have experimented with different genres, including folk, electronica, world music and indie rock.

The band were given the opening slot on 2006's V Festival after winning a competition. They subsequently released two EPs and their debut single "Evening/Morning". Since then, the band has released four albums including So Long, See You Tomorrow which topped the album charts in February 2014.[3] The band has toured worldwide as a headlining act, playing North America, Australia, Europe and the Far East.

Their 2014 tour finished on 13 December at Earls Court Arena, their concert being the final event ever to take place there before its demolition. Pink Floyd member David Gilmour played with the band on their song "Rinse Me Down" before a performance of Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here.



Steadman, MacColl and de Saram met at age 15, and began playing under the name The Canals after performing together in a school assembly, with an additional keyboardist. They switched between various aliases until they picked Bombay Bicycle Club, named after a (now defunct) chain of Indian restaurants in Britain. The line-up changed regularly until summer 2006, when Ed Nash joined the band after they met him at a funeral. Initially they played gigs at small London venues such as The Old Blue Last, Lark in the Park and Jacksons Lane (as well as winning Exeter's Got Talent 2009).

The band was entered into Virgin Mobile's "Road to V" competition on Channel 4 in 2006.[4] They were announced as one of two winners of the competition on 16 August 2006, beating competition from fellow London band - and favourites to win the competition - The Holloways in the final round of fourteen bands.[5] Previous participants include The Young Knives, who were winners of the inaugural competition one year before. They were given the opening slot of the 2006 V Festival, playing on the Channel 4 Stage in Chelmsford on 19 August, before opening the Staffordshire site the following day.

The Boy I Used to Be and How We Are (2007-08)[edit]

On 16 May 2007, NME published an article naming Bombay Bicycle Club "...the hottest band to come from North London for quite some time".[6] Bombay Bicycle Club released their debut EP, The Boy I Used to Be, on 12 February 2007. The band released it on their own independent record label, Mmm... Records.[7][8] The EP was produced by Jim Abbiss at his own personal request, and was recorded and mixed by Ewan Davies at Lincolnshire's Chapel Studios. To support the release of the EP they played a headline show at the Dingwalls in Camden as well as supporting fellow "Road to V" winners The Young Knives across some of their UK Tour.[9] The band also played the Carling Stage at Reading and Leeds Festivals in 2007.

The band's second EP, How We Are, was released on 22 October 2007, again through Mmm... Records.[7][8] It was produced by Jim Abbiss, and recorded and mixed by Richard Wilkinson at Konk Studios. The band headlined their first UK tour[8] in support of this release and the EP debuted at number 2 on the UK Indie Singles Chart of 5 November 2007.[10]

At the beginning of 2008, Bombay Bicycle Club appeared at the third annual Artrocker Festival,[11] the Camden Crawl,[12] and The Great Escape Festival in Brighton.[13] The band also played the Shockwaves NME Awards Show at London's KOKO where they were main support for The Hold Steady.[14]

I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose (2008-09)[edit]

In June 2008, all current members of the band officially finished higher secondary school education, which meant that they could commit full-time to music – and enjoy freedom from the conflicting responsibilities of being in a band versus the pursuit of higher education. The band also headlined the first Club NME in Paris at La Fleche D'or venue, they were supported by Bitchee Bitchee Ya Ya Ya, with DJ sets coming from South Central, Shitdisco and Vicarious Bliss.

The band's first single, "Evening/Morning", was released on 4 August 2008 through Young and Lost Club.[15] The single was produced by Jim Abbiss and was recorded and mixed by Richard Wilkinson at The Garden, London. The band embarked on a 23 date UK tour throughout July and August; this included festival appearances at the 2008 Reading and Leeds Festivals, the 2008 T in the Park Festival, The Edge Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland and the second Underage Festival.[15]

In September 2008, Bombay Bicycle Club took part in the Levi's Ones to Watch 5 Night Revue at The Macbeth in London.[16] The band headlined the first night with support from Sky Larkin and an interview and highlights from the show were broadcast on Channel 4 on 9 October 2008.[16]

Bombay Bicycle Club's debut album was recorded between late October and late November 2008 at Konk Studios in London. The album was produced by Jim Abbiss. The band also played the Levi's Ones To Watch tour at the end of October, which included dates in Brighton, London, Birmingham, Liverpool, and Glasgow.

At the end of 2008 Bombay Bicycle Club signed a deal with Island Records to release future singles and albums with the record label. All releases were to be published through the Mmm...Records/Island Records offprint, the first release being the single "Always Like This". The single was released in April 2009 and reached #97 on the UK Singles Chart.[17] The band toured throughout April in support of the release.[18]

Flaws (2010-11)[edit]

On 9 May 2010, Bombay Bicycle Club released the track "Ivy & Gold" in the United Kingdom as a digital download. The single, which was released as a double A-part with the track "Flaws" served as the lead single from the upcoming second studio album; which was later confirmed to be entitled Flaws. Having been added to BBC Radio 1's A Playlist, the single debuted on the singles chart at number 97, climbing to number 56 the following week; marking the band's most successful single to date.

The band released their second studio album Flaws in the United Kingdom on 12 July 2010; where it debuted on the UK Albums Chart at number 8;[17] beating the debut's peak of number 46. The album included 11 acoustically recorded tracks, including "Swansea"; a cover of the Joanna Newsom song that appears on her album The Milk-Eyed Mender and "Fairytale Lullaby"; a cover of the John Martyn song that appears on the album London Conversation. On 10 December, the album was certified Silver by the British Phonographic Industry for selling over 60,000 copies.[19]

On 20 September, the band released the second single "Rinse Me Down" as a music download and 7" vinyl alongside a track entitled "Dorcas", which served as the second A-side.[20] The single managed to reach Radio 1's B Playlist, although failed to chart in the UK.

On 19 April 2011, it was announced that Flaws has been nominated for the 2011 Ivor Novello Award for best album.[21]

A Different Kind of Fix (2011-12)[edit]

In September 2010, the band announced that they had begun working on their third studio album,[22] once again returning to electric guitars following acoustic recordings for Flaws. On 7 June 2011, Zane Lowe revealed on BBC Radio 1 that their new album would be called A Different Kind of Fix. He also said that he would be playing a new song from the album, entitled "Shuffle", on 22 June before its release as a single the following day. The single reached #69 in the charts. The album was released on 29 August 2011 and includes 12 tracks.[23] The band have announced that "Beg" will round off the album as its final release on 9 July 2012. The track failed to make the original physical version of the album but was available as a bonus track on the digital version.[24] Lucy Rose sang on A Different Kind of Fix, but the band recruited Amber Wilson instead for their 2012 tour due to Lucy's solo project. Louis Bhose, a keyboardist also is a part of the group.[25]

Bombay Bicycle Club won the Best New Band award at the 2010 NME Awards on 24 February, up against nominees such as The xx, The Big Pink, La Roux, The Olivers and Mumford & Sons. In June 2010, their song "How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep" was included as a bonus track on The Twilight Saga: Eclipse soundtrack.

In 2011, a portrait of lead singer Jack Steadman was painted by British artist Joe Simpson and exhibited around the UK including a solo exhibition at The Royal Albert Hall.[26]

Bombay Bicycle Club were among the bands chosen to perform at the BT London Live concert in Hyde Park, which marked the end of the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games.

So Long, See You Tomorrow and hiatus (2013-16)[edit]

On 4 November 2013, the band aired "Carry Me", the first single from their up and coming album that was yet to be named, on BBC Radio 1. On the same night, an interactive video was released, which allowed viewers to manipulate the band members' actions. The album was released on 3 February 2014 and is being followed by a headline tour. The new sounds of the album are influenced from lead singer, Jack Steadman's recent travels to the Netherlands, Turkey, and India.[27] On 4 December 2013, the band announced that the new album would be called So Long, See you Tomorrow, with the track listing being: "Overdone"; "It's Alright Now"; "Carry Me"; "Home By Now"; "Whenever, Wherever"; "Luna"; "Eyes Off You"; "Feel"; "Come To" and "So Long, See You Tomorrow". On the same night, the album artwork, designed by La Boca, was released.

On 10 December, just after midnight, "It's Alright Now" was aired on BBC Radio 1.

On 6 January 2014, the band aired the album's third single, "Luna", on the Zane Lowe show, on BBC Radio 1. The single features solo artist Rae Morris and was accompanied by a music video.

On 14 December 2014, following the release of their fourth album and an extensive tour, the band announced via Facebook that they were taking a break during 2015 following a busy five years, but assured fans that they 'will be back'.[28]

On 29 January 2016, the band again announced via Facebook that they are taking a break for the foreseeable future, but it is not necessarily the end of Bombay Bicycle Club.[29]



Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
US Heat.
2009 I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose 46
2010 Flaws 8 95
2011 A Different Kind of Fix 6 18 84 65 97 22
2014 So Long, See You Tomorrow 1 8 36 78 95 74 101 1


Single Year Peak chart positions Album

"Evening/Morning"[A] 2008 I Had the
Blues But I
Shook Them Loose
"Always Like This"[A] 2009 97
"Dust on the Ground" 166
"Ivy & Gold / Flaws"[B] 2010 56 Flaws
"Rinse Me Down / Dorcas"
"Shuffle" 2011 64 38 A Different Kind of Fix
"Lights Out, Words Gone" 89
"Leave It" 2012
"How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep"
"Carry Me" 2013 81 So Long, See You Tomorrow
"Luna" 2014 78
"Feel" 75
"Come To"
"Home by Now"
"—" denotes a release that did not chart or has not been released
  1. ^ a b The track "Always Like This" was reissued for release during 2009, whilst the track "Evening/Morning" was reissued for release during 2010.
  2. ^ Only the track "Ivy & Gold" received a certified chart placement in the United Kingdom.


Year Name
2007 The Boy I Used to Be
  • Released: 12 February 2007
  • Label: Mmm...Records
  • Format: Digital Download, Limited Edition 10", CD
2007 How We Are
  • Released: 29 October 2007
  • Label: Mmm...Records
  • Format: Digital Download, Limited Edition 7", CD
  • Chart: #2 UK Indie Chart
2010 iTunes Festival: London 2010
  • Released: 28 July 2010
  • Label: Island Records
  • Format: Digital Download


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  8. ^ a b c Bombay Bicycle Club
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  11. ^ Artrocker 3rd annual festival 15-19 Jan | Artrocker
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External links[edit]