TWENTY years ago, a group from Eastbourne unleashed their debut album, and from that point on it has been “one hell of a ride.”

Toploader burst on to the music scene with the release of their critically acclaimed record Onka’s Big Moka, thrusting them into the mainstream limelight.

After a whirlwind first couple of years, the band decided they needed to take stock of where they were and decided to go on hiatus.

Fast-forward to 2011, and it seemed mature heads prevailed, as the band made up of: Joseph Washbourn, Dan Hipgrave, Matt Knight and Rob Green came back to the music world with a refreshed appreciation of their craft.

Speaking to the Gazette ahead of headlining BLove this weekend, vocalist Washbourn said: “When we realised that Onka’s was 20-years-old, I thought to myself ‘where the hell has that time gone?’

“Those early years everything just got a little bit crazy and when you’re in it, you don’t realise what a pressure cooker you are in.

“Don’t get me wrong, I loved every minute of it — we were just a group of normal blokes from Eastbourne who had managed to get a record deal, and next thing we know we were supporting Bon Jovi.

“Everything was so quick and there was so much pressure, of course it was really exciting but there was a sense of ‘hold on tight’.”

Washbourn said by the time the band came around to writing their second album, Magic Hotel, he and other members felt the need to step away.

He admits now the band works more as a cohesive unit with similar goals.

He added: “We have weirdly been together longer now than we were the first time around.

“I had just had enough of performing and being on that rollercoaster, and we didn’t know how long that break was going to be.

“Obviously, I was always writing, but now I wasn’t writing for the band, but I genuinely never thought us doing this again would happen.

“Now it’s at a point where we really enjoy it again. It feels like a different band and things are a bit more harmonious.”

Even though the band has had a recent resurgence, Washbourn admits there was still a bit of ‘guilt’ felt about the band’s hit single Dancing in the Moonlight.

“I think we have been forgiven for it now,” jokes the vocalist.

“It was everywhere and I think us as much as the general public had a bit of overkill with that song. But now people come to a Toploader show expecting to hear that, so it has come full circle.”

Toploader will be closing B Love on the main stage on Sunday.