Jim : I’m Jimmy. I play bass guitar
Gavan : Hello, I’m Gavan. I’m the drummer
Larry : Hello, I’m Larry and I play the guitar
Tim : Tim, I sing and write the lyrics
Gavan : The recording went fantastic, really well and I think we’ve probably made the best LP for four years that I’ve ever heard. It’s called Strip Mine. We recorded it about a year ago with Hugh Jones down in Wales.
Tim : We usually jam together as a band and try and work out basic tunes and a kind of general structure for the song. I’ll take a cassette home and then late at night into early morning, I’ll write the lyrics starting with whatever comes into my head. A lot of them I don’t have a clue what I’m going to write about, I just let the song be written the way it wants to be.
Everyone in the band has completely different influences, often contrasting.
Larry : I used to when I was 13 or 14 or something like that, I used to listen to Jimi Hendrix a lot. Before that I listened to a lot of Motown when I was younger around about 12. Then I really got into heavy rock music like that English group called The Groundhogs and other blues rock guitar players. And like everybody, I think as I grew older, my tastes widened and my spectrum of musical influence just got bigger and bigger and bigger.
Tim : We don’t like each other’s taste in music some of the time.
Gavan : Quite often
Tim : Quite often. What do you call an influence because we never try and emulate anyone. Full stop. And if we hear certain influences which we feel are too overt we just drop the song or we change it.
Gavan : There’s a lot of music in America that I like, especially ethnic’s the wrong word but each different area has it’s own music, it has it’s own idiom and we’re quite open to that, travelling round, we get inspired by that.
Jim : I suppose it’s just the music we listen to, isn’t it?
Tim : There aren’t any fillers on the LP. We made sure everything that went on we really worked on. We really got the most out of.
What For is about somebody trying to uplift themselves. In Manchester, there’s this big town centre and every evening before the sun goes down these birds, these starlings, start circling overhead, flying in almost hieroglyphic formations, a really spectacular site, really beautiful, especially in the middle of a dirty smelly city to see these beautiful formations and it’s really uplifting. And the song is kind of about this guy who’s really down, he’s trying not to think about his worries and newspapers and everything he reads, he looks up and sees this beautiful sight and thinks “What For, tell me, tell me what for”