Lightspeed Champion

Lightspeed Champion

Infobox Musical artist
Name = Lightspeed Champion

Img_capt = Dev Hynes, St. George's Church, Brighton
Img_size = 150
Background = solo_singer
Origin = United Kingdom
Genre = Indie rock, folk
Years_active = 2005–present
Members = Devonte Hynes
Label = Domino Records
Associated_acts = Whirlwind Heat
Lightspeed Heat
Test Icicles
URL = []

Lightspeed Champion is the name of the new musical venture by ex-Test Icicle Devonte Hynes. He is currently signed to Domino Records. Containing musical elements from a variety of genres, Lightspeed Champion has a radically different sound to Hynes' previous band. The name 'Lightspeed Champion' comes from a series of comic strips Hynes did as a teenager in his school maths books. Hynes was born in Houston, Texas and raised in Essex, England.

"Falling Off the Lavender Bridge"

In early 2007, Hynes went to Omaha, Nebraska to record Lightspeed Champion's debut album with Saddle Creek producer Mike Mogis, also a member of the band Bright Eyes. A number of Omaha-based musicians appear on the record including Mogis himself, trumpet player and pianist Nate Walcott (also of Bright Eyes), The Faint's drummer Clark Baechle and guest vocalist Emmy The Great - along with moonlighting members of Cursive and Tilly And The Wall. [cite web |url=|title=Domino Records page|publisher =Domino Records|accessdate=2007-12-17]

The result of those recording sessions is the album "Falling Off the Lavender Bridge" which was released on January 21, 2008. The first single from the album is "Galaxy of the Lost", which was released on July 30, 2007. [cite web |url=|title=Domino Records listing|publisher =Domino Records|accessdate=2007-12-17]

Hynes has also recorded a number of bootlegs and unofficial releases, made available to the public through his blog and MySpace, these include an album written and recorded entirely in a day and an EP consisting only of covers originally by the band Green Day.

Lightspeed Champion have also received airtime on Radio 1 during Hadouken!'s late-night one-off show 'In for Zane Lowe'.

Lightspeed Champion appeared on the NME cool list of 2007, at number 49, just a few places below Noel Gallagher at number 16.

The band

Members of the touring band so far consist of Hynes' friends in other bands, including Florence of Florence and the Machine, Martin, aka The Train Chronicles and UK singer-songwriter Emmy the Great. Mike Siddell, formerly of Hope of the States, plays violin with the band. He is a prolific musician and a core member of the Brighton based Willkommen Collective, playing with Willkommen bands such as Sons of Noel and Adrian, Shoreline, The Leisure Society and The Miserable Rich. He also plays with Troubles and made a guest appearance on the debut EP by * [ A Genuine Freakshow] , [cite web |url=|title=A Genuine Freakshow |publisher =A genuine Freakshow|accessdate=2008-06-20] .

Anna Prior, former drummer of Leeds band Dead Disco and The Ivories, plays drums in the current line up. [cite web |url=|title=NME |publisher|accessdate=2008-01-04] Other guest members have contributed in live shows, such as Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys, Faris Badwan of The Horrors, Frederick Blood-Royale of Ox.Eagle.Lion.Man [cite web |url=|title=Watch: Lightspeed Champion, Arctic Monkey, Ipso Facto, 'Fred Les' play one-off covers show|publisher =Drowned in Sound|accessdate=2008-02-22] , Jack Penate and Eugene McGuinness as well as We Are Scientists' Keith Murray on the June 6th episode of "Late Night with Conan O'Brien". Dev was voted 49 in music magazine NME's 2007 Cool List. [cite web |url=|title=NME Cool List|publisher|accessdate=2008-01-04]


In summer 2007 the band supported both Bright Eyes and Final Fantasy on tour, before launching a headline tour of their own in September/October. In fall 2007, Hynes performed solo in support of Patrick Wolf and Good Shoes on their UK tour. The full band played a headline tour of the U.K in early 2008.

The band appeared at the NME 2008 Awards which was broadcast on Channel 4 on February 29, 2008. The whole band appeared dressed as characters from Star Wars, including Princess Leia on the drums. The band's affinity with Star Wars was continued when they played the main theme to the trilogy at O2 Wireless Festival 2008. [cite web |url=|title=Channel 4 music|publisher =CHannel 4|accessdate=2008-03-02] Hynes (and a violin player) will began a short U.S. tour in March 2008, ending with an appearance at SXSW 2008. At SXSW they talked with The Wombats, and supported them at a concert at the Royal Albert Hall. They are also headlining at this year's T4 on the Beach.

He also played with We Are Scientists at Glastonbury 2008, with their front man Keith Murray joking to presenter Zane Lowe in an interview afterwards that "he owed us a sandwich!".

He appeared at Belgian music festival Pukkelpop in August 2008.



* "Galaxy of the Lost" (July 16, 2007)
* "Midnight Surprise" (October 15, 2007)
* "Tell Me What It's Worth" (January 14, 2008) #72
* "Galaxy of the Lost" (May 12, 2008) (Re-Release)


* "Falling Off the Lavender Bridge", January 21, 2008 (Domino Records) [cite web |url=| listing|publisher|accessdate=2008-01-13] UK #45

Official bootlegs

* "Bad Covers EP" July 8, 2007 [cite web |url=| Blog Entry|publisher|accessdate=2008-02-05]
* "" July 16, 2007 [cite web |url=| Blog Entry|publisher =|accessdate=2008-02-05]
* "I Wrote And Recorded This In Less Than Five Hours" August 2007 [cite web |url=||publisher = Vice Magazine|accessdate=2008-02-05]
* "Garbageband Xmas EP" December 8, 2007 [cite web |url=| Blog Entry|publisher|accessdate=2008-02-05]
* "Album In A Day 2" October 4, 2008 [cite web |url=| Blog Entry|publisher|accessdate=2008-04-10]


External links

* [ Official Site]
* [ MySpace page]
* [ Hynes' YouTube page]
* [ Lightspeed Champion Live Session at CNETTV]
* [ Lightspeed Champion Interview on Platforms Magazine]
* [ Lightspeed Champion live set at Spanking New Sessions]
* [ Lightspeed Champion covers Michael Jackson]
* [ Live review from 12th February 2008] on The Music Magazine
* [ Review of Galaxy Of The Lost] on The Music Magazine
* [ Live Photos @ The Troubadour] (July 2008)

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