I’m about forty five minutes into a thirteen hour flight from Singapore to London. I’m hoping this interview will bring us up to a clear hour by the time I’m done but you never can be too sure. I might get distracted. It’s a pretty empty flight and the stewardesses in flowered Asian dresses have been coming around interrupting people reading or listening to music go tell them that they’re free to move seats to somewhere else if they want. That a dangerous thing to say to people on a plane because it’s a dog eat dog world up here a million miles in the air and everyone wants to be comfier than the next person. I have enough trouble choosing a seat online from those diagrams, but seeing it all in real life and up for grabs is pretty turbulent for everyone’s sanity id say. Either way I stayed where I was originally as I thought that was pretty British of me and I’m as comfortable as I can be having only flown out here yesterday. Jack and I had a dj set in another half empty club owned by some millionaire or something and now were coming home very slightly richer but with slightly less soul and hair than I had when I arrived.
2. What can fans expect to experience at one of your shows?
Depends really on what you get up to during the show really. Some venues have a pretty lax policy on restroom gender policing so perhaps you could use that to your advantage. Generally speaking the most common thing people experience though at our shows is the songs they may or may not have heard on a cd by us played about 50 times louder than their personal boom box could. We all like to splash a bit of cologne on before a show just at the off-chance that the venue will be so small that we might be able to offer that evening guests the gift of pleasant scent.
3. What is your favourite song to perform live?
The shortest ones a pretty fun. Just kidding. Right now I’m excited to start playing ‘come down’ off our newest record and ‘from the stars’ from our first record which we haven’t played in over a year. It’s a pretty good song if you ask me.
4. When you’re not performing what do you do to keep yourself busy when you’re on tour / on the road?
I’ve been told that I have a fidgeting problem so to be truthful I expect I spend s lot of time playing with things like keys or cutlery, whatever is lying around on the table in the bus or dressing room. I once did nothing on a 12 hour flight. That might not sound dramatic first but I really do mean nothing. I didn’t sleep, eat, read, listen to music, watch movies or ANYHING. I was in a foul mood the whole flight because id been given an aisle seat next to a ma. Of the larger size but when I got off the plane in South America id never felt more refreshed. So perhaps I should do more ‘nothing’ when I’m touring but in reality apart from fidgeting I like to watch movies, sightsee and eat well.
5. What’s the best gig you’ve ever played?
You’d really have to ask an impartial judge who has seen every show we’ve done as my take on a good show is very different to anyone watching. I like shows were everything feel easy and I can really lie into the music like a sofa and not be aggravated by people playing bum notes or some sound or another not being exactly how I like it in my headset. I will say though the shows we play in countries with fairly cold climates are memorable. Poland and Russia for example always great us with nothing but enthusiasm.
6. What was the first gig you ever went to?
Penguin cafe orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall. Bourge-wha???
7. Which other artists are you listening to at the moment?
I’m pretty bloody fanatical about Camel right now. But also I am listening to big mouth USA by Jim Ford and the new skeleton witch record.
8. Which song do you wish you wrote?
Christ. I’d have to say ‘no more I love you’s’ by that Lennox girl because I do think it’s an incredible song but also so I could have vetoed the balls off that insanely naff spoken word middle section. Also whispers and moans by crowded house are up there. Then again…I’d probably be better off wishing I wrote a song which has made loads of money but is a bit rubbish. So I’d go for anything by simply red or Alanis Morrisette.
9. Who would you most like to collaborate with?
A decent cobbler right now! I’ve got a pair of boots which need fixing before we go to Japan and I have no idea where to find a cobbler. Musically, gosh I don’t know. Someone old…I like people who have been doing something a long time. Neil Finn from crowded house then maybe, or someone like Ethan johns.
10. Plans for the rest of the year?
Touring and touring. I’m going to take a few days holiday in Paris and hopefully celebrate the birth of my favourite superhero later on in December too.