THEY go for a Village People look on stage and their lead singer, appositely named Tad Loony, likes to run a few laps - provided there's room.

Count your blessings they don't wield wooden stakes, which you might if your band provides the music to the one of the hippest television shows around.

Four Star Mary are the group whose songs are constantly aired on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the ass-kicking, streetwise American schoolgirl who has dedicated her life to dusting the bloodsuckers.

Now they're coming to Worcester tonight on their first-ever British tour, amid a frenzy of excitement from fans of the BBC2 show, and they're hoping for an underwear onslaught "of Tom Jonesian proportions".

The band's rise to fame is the stuff of legend and a classic case of seizing the moment.

"Our song ended up on BTVS after I stuck a tape in at a party where I was doing 'craft-service', ie being a waiter," explains the band's very affable bass player Steve Carter.

The move prompted the show's music supervisor to make further enquiries and the group have now chalked up nearly 10 songs on the programme over the past three seasons.

Initially told they would feature playing on the programme, the band ended up watching Seth Green play air guitar before fans began clamouring for the real thing.

Now, for the current series finale in the United States, the group have been written into the show.

"All things considered, it's much more fun to mock someone else pretending to play your songs than to have to hang out on set all day to pretend playing them yourself," said Steve.

And fans who expect a dark descent into the underworld during their live performance will be surprised.

"We're actually into more of a Village People look," said Steve.

"Tad likes to dress up as an Indian chief. Zu can often be found prancing about in construction worker garb. The only drawback was that Chris nearly asphyxiated when someone unplugged the air pump to his deep-sea diver outfit during a show."

Four Star Mary play the Marr's Bar, Pierpoint Street, Worcester.