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KASMs were a Dalston-based post-punk quartet. The band consisted of Rachel Mary Callaghan (vocals), Scott Walker (guitar/drums), Rory Brattwell - born Attwell - (drums/guitar) and Gemma Fleet (bass guitar). The group formed in late 2007 and signed to Trouble Records in early 2008. Brattwell left the band in April 2010.
KASMs have cited several origin stories for the band, the two most popular involving an argument between all four members by a Dalston cashpoint and meeting after being thrown off a dancefloor in a club for aggressive dancing. KASMs first show was played at Ryan's Bar in Stoke Newington with bands Pheremoans and The Crisps. Notably, the band were booked by a friend without having written any songs; in an interview with Leeds Music Scene, Rachel Callaghan said of the show: "We had to quickly make some songs up on the spot just so we would have something to show ... It's good to write things quickly."
Causing a stir
By February 2008 KASMs had been booked to play in New York, their wild live shows having caused a buzz across London's underground scene. Callaghan is usually the sole instigator of the mayhem, admitting to once pouring a cup of boiling coffee on one audience member's head, as well as participating in many other destructive onstage antics which often cause damage to the band members and their equipment. The band appeared on the BBC Introducing Stage at the Reading & Leeds festivals in August 2009.
KASMs signed to independent label Trouble Records in April 2008. Label mates include Crystal Castles and An Experiment On A Bird In The Air Pump; the latter were friends with KASMs before either band was signed. In July 2008, KASMs released their debut single, "Taxidermy", which charted in the UK at no. 12 in the independent music chart.
The band have featured in several major UK music magazines, including Artrocker and the NME.
KASMs debut LP, Spayed, was rated 8/10 by the NME, along with a generally positive review.
In April 2010, Rory Brattwell left KASMs, citing a changing dynamic in the group as the main reason for his departure. Via the band's blog and MySpace page, he released the following statement:
"Bands are complicated, dynamics and relationships change over the years you spend together in a band, sometimes for better, sometimes for worse. I've had a lot of good times in KASMs ... I may start making more music at some point but have no idea in what capacity at the moment. Lots of love to the rest of the band, I hope KASMs continue to make great music and play great shows. Also, without being too corny, thanks to anyone who came to see us play and bought our records; it was a nice surprise when it turned out people liked the music we were making!"
- KASMs - CD EP (March 2008)
- "Taxidermy" - 7" vinyl single (July 2008)
- "Bone You" - 7" vinyl single (February 2009)
- "Male Bonding" - 7" vinyl single (May 2009)
- Spayed - CD and 12" vinyl album (May 2009)
- Tape EP - cassette tape (July 2009)
- "Absent Without Leave" - single (August 2009)