Today news reached us at PHOP HQ that By By frontman and The Bambinos lyricist Liam Pease-Smith had sadly taken his own life this week aged only 24. Everyone at Philophobia sends their condolences to his family and close friends.
I first met Liam in 2007 at a The Bambinos gig. He told me he was in the band. I asked why he wasn't on stage and he told me he just wrote the lyrics. He said he'd tried fronting them but it didn't work as he couldn't sing. He used this to his advantage writing things he knew he wouldn't have to sing, most notably on Jessica (a tirade against a reviewer who'd given By By a bad review).
He did try joining the band on keyboard in 2011 just before they split but he was perhaps best as a performer in By By. Sometimes performing with a band but more often than not it was just Liam (sat crossed legged on the floor) and keyboard. Not to everyones tastes, it was abrasive and messy. A definite marmite band you'd say. Liam always in his element.
Liam had an enthusiasm filled with youthful abandon. To hell with the consequences. My favourite example of this was him berated the bar manager at Escobar whilst on stage in the said venue. Naturally it led to them being banned. Liam thought this was brilliant. This is the Liam I'll remember, yes sometimes a little intense but always full of ideas and enthusiasm that were difficult not to get swept up in.
The last couple of years haven't been the best for Liam and in the last conversation we had he talked of wanting to get back to 2010 'when I was an artist, not a reprobate.' If only he could have found a way. RIP Liam, you'll be sadly missed.