Phil Korbel : It’s James and Phil
Jim : Phil and James
PK : The band have now crawled out of the studio. Torn themselves away from the John Peel session, their own John Peel session that they were listening to in the gramophone library and come to talk to me. And now they’re complaining they’re not being paid. OK, now recently you’ve been described as being a band in the wilderness. We’ve heard nothing from you on vinyl for ages. What’s wrong?
Jim : Ermmm
PK : The corporate voice of James
Tim : We’re still in the wilderness. We’ve got an LP and other stuff coming out in about February. It was meant to come out now, it’s not going to. It’s being remixed. Maybe. Just in case someone’s listening. It’s coming out in February and we’ve just had a year of business problems.
PK : Business problems?
Tim : They’re over now
PK : And a change of management I gather
Tim : Yeah, we didn’t have a manager for a long time.
Jim : So that was quite a change really because we’ve got one
Tim : Well, we got one and then we sacked him so now we’ve got another one
PK : A real one
Tim : A real one
Jim : We didn’t sack him
Tim : We took him back to the shop as he was still under guarantee.
PK : Are we at liberty to divulge your new manager’s identity?
Jim : Mr X, come on down
Tim : Eliot Rashman who also manages what they called
All : Simply blue, red head
PK : Are we now going to have the same Simply Red treatment on James
Tim : Oh yes
Jim : You haven’t heard the new album
Tim : You haven’t heard the backing female singers and the orchestra
PK : You’re not joking are you?
Jim : No, not at all
Tim : We had a Tibetan, a Tibetan orchestra for the backing tapes and stuff like that. We’re going to tour with them as well in February.
PK : The Tibetan backing orchestra?
Tim : Yeah, gongs and horns and all sorts of things
PK : Ah yeah, a real small scale tour
Tim : And skulls of dead llamas
PK : You spent ages in a Welsh cottage recording this album and you’re still not happy with it. One, why did you go away to record the album?
Gavan : I don’t think Wales is really going away. It’s only like half a day away isn’t it really?
PK : Come on, come on. Be serious now
Gavan : Where do you want us to record it? There’s nowhere in Manchester really.
Jim : Well, now we’re megastars we thought we’d move up and hire somewhere like the Bahamas or Wales. Guess which we picked.
PK : Yeah, well, quite.
Tim : Whatever
PK : Now you’ve got this reputation of being good, clean-living young men. You know, Buddhist, teetotal, the strongest drug you’ll take is a cup of tea. Is this still true or have you fallen away?
Tim : No, we don’t drink tea.
Jim : Very high in tannin, very high in tannin. Makes your teeth go brown
PK : I see, right, OK. So you’re still good clean-living boys
All : We never were. No, no.
Tim : It’s all a myth
Jim : We’re sponsored by Guinness now
PK : I see, so it’s going to be the Guinness tour now? I like the idea of that. Now, we’ve heard the rendition, the only kind of recorded output of James that we’ve had recently are the jingles that three of the band did that Tim hasn’t heard. Tim, the singist, for reasons best known to himself didn’t want to come in
Tim : You’ll find out why when you hear the bloody jingle.
PK : Well he hasn’t actually heard this one
Jim : He’s a lightweight
PK : Just listen to this
Jim : You’re sacked
(plays piano-heavy Meltdown jingle with Jim’s deep “scary” voice)
Gavan : That’s it lads, I’m leaving
Jim : Nothing to do with me
PK : As you can see, now the denials come out
Tim : They only agreed to do it because you said it would remain anonymous.
PK : Oh rubbish
Tim : Sounds like a mad vicar
Jim : Meltdown. That’ll do
PK : That’ll do
Jim : Nearest to a compliment we’re going to get this evening
Tim : We’re going into adverts because we reckon there’s some money in it and we haven’t seen any anywhere else so we’re going into adverts
PK : Adverts for Jameson Whiskey first?
Tim : Yes, Jameson Whiskey
Jim : You talked us into that one
PK : Right, let’s talk about the new album. You’re dissatisfied with it, but the little of it I’ve heard so far appears to indicate a new direction, a beefier sound maybe.
Tim : Beefier? Come on, we’re healthy
PK : Sorry sorry
Tim : More Marmite.
PK : More soya like
Jim : No, no, we want a new image
Tim : Yeah, beefier, that’s fine
Gavan : It’s not beefier enough, that’s the problem
Tim : More beefy
Gavan : I’ve been ordered to come closer to the mic. It is not beefier enough.
PK : Thank you. That’s very kind of you Gavan. Gavan the drummer acting like a drummer.
Jim : Ooh cutting
PK : Tim, the rest of you, Tim, Jim, Gavan. The new album, if people were going to take the last album as a starting point, in which ways is this album different?
Tim : It’s the second one. It’s the one after the last album. I think that’s the first thing that’s really important to get across.
Jim : The second one’s a lot better
Tim : It’s much different from the first one as well
PK : In what ways?
Tim : It’s got different songs on it
PK : Yeah, right, I see, fine
Jim : It is much better though
Tim : My Mum says she thought that second track was really good.
PK : The second track, now is your Mum.
Jim : There’s only you on it
Tim : That’s why she likes it
(Jim and Tim have pretend argument)
PK : Now you’ve got this image of being very very serious people. Excuse me
Jim : You won’t laugh when he hits you
Tim : Perv
PK : Now this lot did actually say that they were going to behave when they came in, but it seems as if the occasion has overcome them and we might not get anything more sensible out of them. Are we going to?
Tim : Yes, you will
PK : Are you sure?
Gavan : The album is a bit more thought out. That’s why it’s different
Jim : Well said, round of applause
PK : Now the other thing, we’ve got some sense out of them, thank you. Next
Tim : It’s going to be much wilder. The songs are more complete. It’s like on the first LP some of the songs sound like they weren’t quite sketched out fully and the new one, we’ve taken them more to extremes, so a potential rock song becomes a rock song and a potential classical song becomes totally classical with the London Philharmonic joining in. And we’ve just taken things more to the extremes
PK : More extreme, so does that account for the fact that last time you played Manchester you had two sets, you had an acoustic set and then, for want of a better word, a rock set? A full band set anyhow
Gavan : No. We just felt because it had been quite a long time since we last did a gig in Manchester that we just wanted to make it a bit special.
Tim : And Gavan our drummer is a frustrated pianist so it gave him the opportunity to let his fingers out for a walk.
PK : So it was just a bit of fun
Tim : Yeah
PK : Also, it has been suggested that you are now ruing the day you left Factory. You are regretting the day you left Factory.
Gavan : I think we left Factory a bit early
PK : Before you were ready.
Jim : Yeah, we should have gone after dinner
PK : There I was thinking we were having a serious conversation
Jim : It’s true, it’s true
PK : Too early, are you ready now?
Tim : Are we ready?
Gavan : There’s no choice
Jim : We’ve got to be. There’s no point in going backwards. But I think we did leave a bit early
Tim : What do you mean by ready? I mean, what happened was we went on a major record company and they couldn’t see any of our music being potentially commercial so they didn’t put anything behind it. It’s really when they decide that we’re commercially potential, whatever that means. And so God knows whether in their eyes we are or not yet. I doubt it.
PK : Shall we cross fingers. Well anyhow, now a track from that album, the pre-remix version of a track called Charlie Dance and after that we go back to James live. Thank you very much gentlemen.
(plays Charlie Dance)
PK : A track from their forthcoming album, Charlie Dance. And before we go back to Tim and Gavan who will be doing a live song for us in a second, Jim is going to give a little competition for a pair of tickets to their concert at the International 2 on Thursday. Question please, Jim
Jim : Thanks very much Philip. And the question is : Is Ed Bonicki innocent? Answer, yes or no
Tim : Who?
PK : Daley Thompson
Jim : Oh no
PK : Thompson Daley.
Jim : If Thompson’s Daley, is Ed Bonicki innocent?
PK : Answers not on postcard, ring us now on 061-xxx-xxxx to go and see James at the International 2. Now we go over with a flick of switch to Tim and Gavan.