When you find yourself in an age where the reality TV show is king something needs to change. When 'calls costing 10 pence per minute' give birth to careers, when there's a so-called academy where fame can be taught, learned and earned we know we're in trouble. We know we need something special, some kind of superhero.
Cue the latest and greatest musical saviour to come from Glasgow. Superhero are the band with it all: the roots-only plot, the flicknife tunes and the attitude to back it all up:
'We're doing the right thing' says front man Tim Cheshire 'and I'm utterly confident in the music. I've always known it was going to come good.'
With Superhero it's all about restoring faith. The Scottish four piece serve up a debut of 21st century rock that says an eternal 'yes' to the power of four blokes giving it all they've got and aiming for the best. But while they might be pushing infectious glass-half-full melodies, the bottle-half-empty attitude comes from the darker side of poprock.
'We're all about making the right sounds and melodies, especially the in yer face, violent ones.'
Superhero are made up of songwriter and guitarist/singer Pete Morrison, singer and front man Tim Cheshire, Rich Kennedy on drums and Gordon Blackler on bass. It kind of kicked off in 1998 when Morrison and the then guitarist Noel Wensley joined up to find a way out of bad jobs, the Glasgow School of Art and bland music. Drawn together by mutual acquaintances and a love of great music the band was conceived in Morrison's flat with gigs for friends following soon.
'At first when we performed we didn't even have a name, we just battered through' says Cheshire.
Anyone with any talent for reading rock tea-leaves knows that this is how the best stories start out. The friends lapped it up; the local scene took them under its wing as the eventually-named Superhero did the tour of pubs and clubs.
But if superhero landed in 1998 it wasn't until 2000 that they discovered Lois Lane. It was then that they decided to give up the day jobs - a ready mix of student living and social work. So, what, the gigs were coming in thick and fast and there were suits chucking money at them? Not quite.
'When we made the decision' says Cheshire, 'it wasn't based on any level we'd reached. It didn't make any sense financially, but it was right.'
And this is the heart of the band: playing it by their hunches and living on the feelings. They couldn't be any further from 'manufactured'. Instead it was years before anyone told them what to do.
2000 was the year they went full time. It was also the year they bullied an independent into giving them a deal and buying them some recording time. The result, according to Cheshire, was 'a bad experience' and the result of the label pushing them in directions they simply would not travel. The experience wasn't wasted as it taught them a vital lesson: that Superhero knew where superhero should be heading.
'After the album we scraped together our last £400 and went straight back into the studio to record a demo of some new material Pete had been writing. Once it was done we worked our butts off, gigging all over the UK and Europe, playing hundreds of shows and pushing the demo whenever we could.'
The band's drive is mighty. From the birth of the second demo the band were left with barely any money but a cast iron knowledge that things would work out right.
'We started with nothing, not even on the bottom rung of the ladder. We didn't even know where the ladder was. We just knew that we wanted to be in a band, to make it work for us. We did it all ourselves, it's 100% us.'
Cheshire bullied his way into the band getting management and did likewise with their deal with Fierce! Distribution. But the biggest blag of all had to be the involvement of producer Alan Branch (Bjork, Primal Scream, Sinead O'Connor, Blur). Having become used to finding a target and wearing them down over weeks and months, the reply from Branch was a little out of the ordinary.
'He called us back the day he received the demo. We told him we had no money and he still wanted in on it.' In Alan Branch the band clearly met a man with similar superpowers of determination to their own. Says Cheshire: 'He works exclusively with bands where there's only one acceptable outcome, which is a top ten album and two or three hit singles. He could obviously hear something in the demo and has brought the best out of us.'
The eponymous album was completed by the end of 2002 and it's coming on for time when you can judge for yourselves. Not so much a wall of sound, more like a roadblock: Superhero weave fine-line electronica with rock with post-grunge pulses, coming off like Travis on too much heroin, too little sleep and a bad dose of early mornings. It is, quite simply, the soundtrack to a million teen dreams and acts of punk, to break ups, make ups and all the stuff that goes on in between.
Of all the things Superhero have to offer, the fiercest is the power to breathe life into a tired and cynical record buying public. A big claim, perhaps, but at last here is a guitar band not bulk buying second hand nostalgia or downloading skater boy attitude. Superhero are playing it loud and proud, doing what every great guitar band ought to: offering talent, ambition and the wisdom that comes from genuine experience. It's time for the revolution.