Gilkicker make their comeback at Victorious Festival

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Back in 2007 Gilkicker were the local band ‘most likely to’ – they’d attracted serious record label attention and they’d been early – and highly successful – adopters of online crowdfunding through the website Sliceofthepie.

They had even won Best Band at the first ever Guide Awards in 2006.

But things went wrong and the band went their separate ways,

Now they’ve reformed and their first show will be at Victorious tomorrow.

Frontman Sam McCarthy explains what happened: ‘It was a bit weird, We told everyone we didn’t want to do Sliceofthepie and we gave their money back because we wanted to do that TV show, Orange Unsigned.

‘So we went on that, but then they found out about the Sliceofthepie thing, so they booted us off, even though we’d given the money back. It was a big nightmare.

‘We quit one to be on the other, and then they kicked us off anyway. We were the unluckiest band ever.’

Sam pursued a successful career as a songwriter in London, working with the likes of One Direction’s Harry Styles, The Kooks, Asha, Pepper and singer-songwriter Amy Wadge.

But a couple of years ago he moved back to Portsmouth.

Sam explains: ‘We had been asked to do something for the Cellars a while back, but the night got pulled. So then we thought about Victorious and we asked Nick Courtney (who’s hosting the Seaside Stage) and he said: “If anyone pulls out, you can do it.”

Doing Victorious, it’s fitting that we get back together with this

Sam McCarthy, Gilkicker frontman

‘A few weeks later I got a call saying a band had split up and did we want to do it? We got lucky really.

‘Doing Victorious, it’s fitting that we get back together with this.’

Sam’s also been keeping an eye on some of the other local acts: ‘I’m loving Kassassin Street – (former Gilkicker drummer) Tristan’s producing them. Blackfoot Circle are a great band too.

‘Portsmouth has got some good talent and I’m playing this new Dials festival in October – that’s run by some good people, and they’ve got some great acts in.’

Gilkicker are on the Seaside stage at 3.30pm.

n See tomorrow’s The Weekend magazine for a look at what goes into putting on a festival like Victorious. The News will also include an invaluable free eight-page guide to the event. Check for comprehensive coverage over the weekend and then there’ll be a full report and pictures in Monday’s News.