About The Speed Of Sound

The natural beauty and order of the alphabet places The Speed Of Sound between Sonic Youth and Dusty Springfield, that is an appropriate fit. Having been described in a way normally considered to be impossible simultaneously as “like The Stranglers” and “like Jefferson Airplane” by different people watching the same gig, the truth of course is The Speed Of Sound don’t sound like either. The Speed Of Sound have an original and distinctively identifiable sound, something that is largely lacking in the 21st century cookie-cutter corporate music industry. The Speed Of Sound exist in spite of the music industry rather than because of it, firmly outside the grasping and toxic tentacles of major labels they create real music for real people, with a wealth of tune-heavy songs that grow in stature with repeat listening, mesmeric and addictive with a depth and quality that immerses the listener and transcends traditional genre limitations. There is an alternative and this is it.

The Speed Of Sound create atmospheric music; taking influences from across the last fifty years and moulding it into something new. They have been colliding the 1960’s with The Now since their first release in 1989, producing hard edged music with optimism and lyrical bite. And the lyrics are important, they are the starting point to every song, rather than being made to fit an existing structure it is the words themselves that shape the music.

With a DIY ethos derived from punk and a lust for experimentation taken from psychedelia. Inspiration comes from inside, from rage and exasperation and also external themes of dissatisfaction and the inherent inequality and instability of the  21st Century. These themes sit alongside songs inspired by nonmusical art forms, paintings, cinematography and literary works as well as deeply personal subjects. And, there are a lot of songs. The Speed Of Sound have never played the same set twice live and the songs themselves change and evolve with every performance, taking on a life of their own. Therefore, recordings are more ‘that is how we did it today’ than a final definitive version to be continually replicated. Live is where music lives and thrives. To capture this The Speed Of Sound record with an unusually traditional approach, setting up as for a live performance and playing together in the same room; the combination of live drums and live lead guitar allows the spontaneity of performance to be encapsulated in the studio in a way impossible when playing layer by layer to a click track. The Speed Of Sound make music from far outside the music industry.

John Armstrong – Songwriting/Guitars/Vocals: John has developed a vivid style of guitar playing borne of combining rhythm and lead techniques in a flow that pulls the music like a tide. The songs are steeped in unresolved chords and entrancing vocals.

The Speed Of Sound - John Armstrong, vocals & guitar

Ann-Marie Crowley – Vocals/Guitars: Ann-Marie brings a return of the 1989 era format of dual lead vocals and male/female harmonies. She hadn’t performed rock based music before joining The Speed Of Sound and has vast experience of irish, folk and also classical singing.

The Speed Of Sound - Ann-Marie Crowley, vocals & guitar

Kevin Roache – Bass guitar: Kevin has performed with John since 1990, he brings a love of Northern Soul and a six-string guitar based approach to the four string bass. With wide experience of playing differing genre’s including music of Indian origin he has an individual outlook on the bass.


John Broadhurst – Drums: John joined The Speed Of Sound in August 2018 following a period of temporary ‘borrowed’ drummers. He has a wealth of experience including jazz, pop, rock and blues and an ability to play with the spaces, the freedom of playing originals was liberating while the fluid and improvisational sections are something he embraces.



Paul Worthington – Drums: Paul played in The Speed Of Sound from May 2015 to May 2017 and can be heard on the highly acclaimed Everything Changes album. Paul had always played in covers bands before joining The Speed Of Sound and greatly appreciated the chance to create his own rhythmic sculptures. His understated style compliments rather than fills the natural space in the sound.

The Speed Of Sound - Paul

Full list of previous and current band members:

The Speed Of Sound frequently play live in Manchester and beyond. Their latest album ‘Everything Changes’ was released on 06 December 2016, making two ‘best of the year lists’. October 2018 sees the release of a double-A-side single in support of The Pankhurst Trust/Manchester Women’s Aid.


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