The Futureheads

Emma Murphy 19/01/2009

Sunderland's favourite four piece band played Cardiff's brand new venue Sub 29 last December, and Emma Murphy had the pleasure of catching up with Ross Mullard (guitar/ vocals) a few hours before they stunned an eager waiting crowd in the Welsh Capitol.

Your latest album 'This Is Not the World' has been described by many as a punk rock album, when you first started out was that the kind of music you were playing?

We set the band up with a blueprint that it would be quite primitive; there would be no effects pedals, sound as fast as we could, no talking between songs which I suppose is quite obtuse really but looking back I think it's quite cute that we started out with those kinds of principals.
Obviously the bigger you get, the more shows you do then the performance element comes in to it then those rules change. With the latest album we have gone back to that original blueprint a little bit and made the record faster and more true to how we started out.

You supported the Foo Fighters at Wembley back in May 2008, how was that and did you ever expect to be that successful?

It was an odd experience, a great honour but 80,000 people are there to see one band and we were just part of their day so it was a bit like pissing against the wind. It was indulgence on our behalf to say we played at Wembley but we didn't pick up any more fans doing it.

Back in 2005 of course you covered Kate Bush's song 'Hounds of Love' which became a huge success, are you actually big Kate Bush fans and did she ever comment on the cover?

Kate rang us when we were making our second album, she phoned the studio but we were doing a live take so she left a voice mail, she rang to say thanks and just mummies stuff like wishing us a great Christmas. I'm a massive fan, I don't think we had any idea how audacious it was going to be, to do a cover version like that, we did feel a bit cheeky doing a cover but feel we made it our own.

If you could erase everyone's memory of a certain song and then bring that song out as your own, what song what that be?

Oh it would be Motorhead's "Ace of Spades" by a long way, if there was any song I wish I had written it would be that one. It's not as if it's lyrically astounding but I don't know it's just something about that song and plus it's allowed Motorhead to tour off the back of that song for 30 years.

With regards 'This Is Not the World' what influenced you to write the songs?

The only thing we had in mind was that we would be able to play every song live, that it would be a raw, aggressive and straight forward, fast experience and to get back to the principals of Punk Rock. We had a feeling when recording the third album that if the chemistry and the recording process wasn't there then that would be it for us, you can't just keep trying over and over again and I was quite elated when all four of us where in the same head space when making this album and the album is the most important one to us that we made.

What's the favourite place you have visited since being in the Futureheads?

Australia is my favourite place to tour; you don't need buses as the place is so big that you have to fly between Cities. The climate, the people and the general way of life there and the shows that we did where dead good and it was just a happy and exotic place for us to be.

Your back in the recording studio shortly any hints on what fans can expect next?

We are definitely calling it a day on the touring for a while, our drummer and his girlfriend are having a baby, and it will be the first Futurehead junior which will be great. We are just going to start rehearsing in January and see what happens, now that we do our own label we don't know if we want to release an album so soon, we may think about doing some EPs, things can come to fast so we are going to take our time. Also not in a cynical way people aren't really buying albums at the moment, people just download the odd song and don't really digest albums like they used to so we want to be sensitive to changes we don't want to be luddites sitting there saying you should sit there and listen to a whole album, the World is changing and you can't change the way another generation is listening to music. I think as long as we are producing some quality stuff and I'd like to think we are only doing two festivals in 2009 and then coming back full force in the autumn.