Entertainment

“Excited and relieved”: Rock band regained their stolen kit after spotting it online

Noisy L-R: Connor Cheetham, Cody Matthews and Spencer Tobias-Williams

Noisy L-R: Connor Cheetham, Cody Matthews and Spencer Tobias-Williams

A young rock band Noisy have stated that they are

“excited and relieved”

to have been reunited with their stolen equipment after spotting it for sale online.

Noisy, a trio from Worthing who have supported Yungblud and You Me At Six, had £25,000 of kit stolen from a van in Walthamstow in early September this year.

Yet after spotting some items on an online auction site, they were able to track down and regained all of it.

The band have joked to their fans that the narrative could be made into a film.

Noisy group includes singer Cody Matthews, guitarist and keyboardist Connor Cheetham and producer and guitarist Spencer Tobias-Williams.

The trio have is yet to released an album but have notched up a number of million streams and built up a fan following on the live music circuit, with a sound evocative of groups like The Prodigy which fuses rock, dance and hip-hop.

‘Our van’s been nicked’
This stealing happened in the first week of September, soon after Noisy played at the All Points East festival in London. The band were due to have a day off sequel to their performance before going on tour as the support act for rock band You Me At Six.

“We left the van parked outside our tour manager’s house in Walthamstow,”

explains Connor.

“We got a call from our manager at about 7am saying, ‘You’re not going to believe this but our van’s been nicked.'”

The rented van, had been taken at some point at midnight and 07:00.

“We were all speechless,” Spencer continues.

“We just couldn’t believe it, it’s the worst news to hear. I think we’ve realised over the past few months how important playing live is for us as a band. So it was double the amount of gutted.”

Almost instantaneously, the band posted photos of their stolen kit on Instagram in the hope that the public might be able to help them regain it.

They also reported the theft to the Metropolitan Police, who have independently affirmed to BBC News that they received the report.

Amplifiers and loop pedals belonging to the band were taken along with the instruments (stock image)

The band remember how, while waiting for updates, there were

“so many people out there who were willing to help”

– including fellow musicians who lend them equipment so Noisy could fulfill their support slots later in the You Me At Six tour.

Nonetheless, after that tour ended, a friend of the band messaged Spencer to say he thought he’d spotted their equipment on an online auction site. Spencer says he clicked on the link and identified his guitar and one of the band’s amplifiers. The BBC has inspected the original listing on the auction website.

“With this kind of thing, time is of the essence and we needed to try and get it back asap,” Spencer explains. “So I just decided to make an account with a fake name, nothing that can be tied back to us.

“I messaged the guy being like, ‘Hey mate, would you take this amount of money for it?’ – because at this point I was willing to just pay for it myself because it meant a lot to me, this particular guitar.”

The seller sent over another picture of the guitar, and in this one, the band could see and identify even more of their equipment in the background.

couple of days after, Spencer and some friends met with the seller in a public outdoor setting, and bought the guitar back without disclosing themselves as the bona fide owners.

What do the police advise?

The seller had posted several pictures of the band’s equipment on an online auction website (stock image)

At this point in this narrative we should pause to say that, while the band’s meeting with the seller went off without a problem, it’s vital to note the police advise against members of the public taking this method.

Meeting with someone you know to be in ownership of stolen goods could present a risky and unforeseeable situation.

“Information provided by people who find stolen property advertised for sale online is extremely useful in supporting police investigations. However, victims of crime are advised to speak with police officers rather than meeting with those who have listed property for sale.”

A spokesman for the Met Police told BBC News.

“In relation to stolen vehicles, especially those with keyless entry systems, the use of a steering wheel lock is recommended.” They added

After being reunited with his guitar and getting the measure of the seller, Spencer messaged him once again to ask if he had any other musical equipment for sale. The seller sent back photos of other guitars and amplifiers which the group recognised as their own.

“We were like, ‘He’s got it all’,” Spencer recollects.

Connor and Spencer arranged to buy the rest of the kit, and go to the seller’s house to collect it. A drummer who played with the band also joined for this meeting, bringing a friend of his who worked as a security guard.

Spencer says

“We thought, ‘We’re just going to go in, we’re not going to pay the money or anything, we’re just going to try and get it back’,”

After at first making small talk with the seller, the band came clean.

“The drummer and the security guy said, ‘Look mate, all of this stuff is stolen, it doesn’t belong to you, we have receipts for everything, we know you have it in your house so we’re coming in right now to get it, or we’re going to involve the police, so what do you want to do?'” Spencer recalls.

 

“The guy was very apologetic, he said he didn’t realise it was stolen and said he wanted to help us get it back because he realised this is our livelihood. He said he’d bought it off someone else for like £3,000 as a bulk buy.”

The band, pictured in London’s Piccadilly Circus, say their dream is to headline Glastonbury in 10 years

https://www.instagram.com/theworldnoisy/?utm_source=ig_embed&ig_rid=1152a26d-f1a6-468a-9b8c-b46286d12887

The band disclosed to having felt apprehensive about meeting the seller.

“I was probably slightly worried a couple of days before,” says Spencer.

“The fear of the unknown was quite scary, but we knew in our heads that we were just going there to get the equipment, if anything was sketchy we would’ve been straight out,” Connor adds.

Noisy are now counselling other bands to think of practical actions which might prevent the same thing happening to them, like always parking a van with its back to a wall, and taking kit with them into hotels if they’re in any doubt.

A throwback on what transpired, Spencer says:

“It’s a mixture of emotions, it’s definitely a big relief, it’s kind of like a bad dream you’ve woken up from. We’re just so excited to be playing our own songs again back on tour.”

There is one member of the group, nonetheless, who missed all the drama.

“I wasn’t even there for the sting, I was absolutely gutted,”

laments Cody.

“Funnily enough, I was at Alton Towers on holiday, texting the boys, worried out of my mind. But they smashed it, man, couldn’t have asked for it to have gone better really. I was just so worried, none of us knew who this guy was really, and I just wanted everyone to be safe.”

Noisy’s new single Rock ‘n’ Roll Raver will be first shown on BBC Radio 1’s Future Sounds with Jack Saunders on Wednesday from 20:00 BST.

Leave a Reply