IN THREE short years Basingstoke alternative rock band Flashfires have been making waves on both sides of the Atlantic.

With the core of the band meeting in primary school, the quintet made up of Alex Gonzato (vocals and guitar) and Fraser Roskilly (lead guitar), both from Hatch Warren; Jon Cullis (guitar), from Old Basing; Liam Kinslow (bass), from Brighton Hill; and Toby Bartlett (drums), from Kempshott have really begun to stretch their wings since they formed in 2013.

But things weren’t all plain sailing as it took a lot of hard work for the band to get recognised in their home town.

“Finding gigs in our home town was difficult in the early days,” said lead guitarist Fraser Roskilly.

“There weren’t many venues for bands starting out which prompted us to work hard and get good quickly to land bookings in neighbouring towns.

“But since Basingstoke Live has taken off and Stage has opened, we have built up a huge following in Basingstoke.”

Basingstoke Gazette:

Taking influence from bands such as Queen’s of The Stone Age, the Strokes and the Arctic Monkeys.

Flashfires have gained critical acclaim up and down the country.

And among their fans the band can count rock legend and Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy page.

“Having him watch us in a small pub in London is definitely one of our most treasured memories,” Fraser tells The Gazette.

“Chatting to him afterwards was surprisingly informal and chilled out; he’s such a nice guy despite his legendary status in the rock guitar world.”

With singles Shy and Manshark both getting air time on BBC Radio One and Two, it seems the growing hype surrounding the band isn’t going away anytime soon.

Fraser adds: “We’re constantly together to amass the largest possible catalogue to take to major labels.

“Our live show have also steeped up a gear and we’ve booked our longest tour to date, starting with some awesome festival slots in September.”

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