A BOLTON drummer is looking forward to getting back on the road with his band after their UK tour was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Leeds-based rockers KOYO release their second album You Said It on June 26, but sadly it could be a while before the band can play their new songs live.

“We had a lot of shows booked, but they’ve all been postponed,” said Tom Higham. “We’re hoping for our gigs in September to go ahead but it is still up in the air.”

Formed in Leeds in 2015, KOYO have fast become a major force in the city’s thriving alternative scene playing to audiences at Reading, Leeds, Download, Ramblin’ Man, Live At Leeds and Camden Rocks Festivals.

“I started having drum lessons with Bolton Music Service and used to play in the jazz orchestra,” said Tom, 26, who is from Westhoughton. “I played in brass bands too and as I got older I knew I wanted to do it for a career. When I was 17 I joined the jazz course at Leeds College of Music which is where I started playing in lots of different bands.

“After I graduated the lead singer of KOYO got in touch with me saying they needed a drummer.

“At the time I was doing lots of jazz drumming, but I had played with a Bolton rock band called STB and now I mainly play rock and pop music.”

KOYO released their eponymous debut album in September 2017 to critical acclaim, receiving outstanding press in the likes of Q magazine and Classic Rock, while they also picked up support from DJ Steve Lamacq at BBC 6Music.

“We’ve spent a lot of time touring the UK and we’ve been seeing the crowds grow,” said Tom. “Our first album won over a lot of ‘prog’ fans but we wanted to drift away from that a bit and I guess this one is a bit more poppy.

“We worked with a producer called Mike Horner who has worked with Franz Ferdinand and Hot Chip and he was really good to work with and made us think about the recording process in a different way.

“You can definitely hear the difference in the production values and he made a lot of the tracks come alive.”

The band have released five singles from the album winning acclaim on social media.

“I go back to Bolton pretty much every weekend,” added Tom. “I have some students who I teach drums there and I have an uncle who still plays pubs there with a band - he is a drummer too and was one of my biggest influences when I started out.”

For more information go to koyoband.com