Party time with The Heartbreaks

The Heartbreaks play live at Smokey O'Connor's this Friday.
The Heartbreaks play live at Smokey O'Connor's this Friday.
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Morecambe’s globetrotting band will round off 2012 in some style this weekend.

Fighting off jet lag from their second triumphant trip to Japan, The Heartbreaks will play live at Smokey O’Connor’s pub on Morecambe Street this Friday night (December 21).

And before that, Christmas shoppers in Marketgate, Lancaster will be treated to a semi-acoustic set from the cheeky foursome on Thursday night (December 20) from 6.15pm to 7pm.

The Heartbreaks - Matthew Whitehouse, Ryan Wallace, Joe Kondras and Chris ‘Deaks’ Deakin - will spread festive cheer to close a year when they released their debut album Funtimes, conquered the Far East, appeared on their own Channel 4 TV show and earned plaudits wherever they went.

Last week the lads played gigs in Osaka and Tokyo, where their appeal is at its height.

“It’s taken off for us in Japan like we hoped it would take off for us everywhere,” said front man Matthew.

“Funtimes has sold very well there. It’s amazing that these songs we practiced in Joe’s bedroom and in Bernie Kelly’s lock-up near The Carleton are now known thousands of miles away, and there are people who know all the words and sing along.

“It’s galvanising. I’m still getting my head around it.”

Whilst in Japan, the boys found time to relax at a classic Japanese karaoke bar.

“I don’t normally like karaoke because I sing all the time anyway,” said Matt.

“But this was fun. We did all the cheesy stuff like Toto by Africa, Heaven is a Place on Earth and Bon Jovi. It wasn’t pretty!”

Plans are now afoot for the lads to play in Singapore in January and Germany in February, then release their second album some time in 2013.

Despite rave reviews and a radio airplay number one in Japan for ‘Delay, Delay’, Funtimes didn’t sell as well in Britain as the band hoped, so now Matthew is looking to the future.

“The Smokey’s gig on Friday will draw a line under Funtimes,” he said.

“Sometimes I wonder if we didn’t go far enough with it. The songs are all brilliant but maybe it didn’t sound as exciting as it should have done.

“On the second album, there will be no room for subtleties. It will be darker...like Echo and the Bunnymen playing Bruce Springsteen songs. We’re really going to go for it.”

The Heartbreaks will play some of their new material on Friday night at Smokey O’Connor’s where a Christmas party atmosphere is promised.

You can buy tickets for the Smokey’s gig from the pub itself or from Dirty Entertainment records in the Arndale Centre. You can also reserve tickets for payment on the night by calling 0773 0567945.

Support comes from The Art Club, Orphan Boy and Greenheart.

THE boys have recorded a Christmas track for their fans as a free download. You can hear their cover of Darlene Love’s ‘Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)’ HERE