Paul Cook 22/12/2007
First of all, how did The Wombats form?
Me and Dan kind of weren't friends in school, I knew of him through other friends and stuff. We first met each other in Art College in Liverpool and just used to get shit-faced with each other and wake up with really bad hangovers and write silly songs like 'Charles the Goat!' We became friends and then the year after we toured in the same college and he asked me if I wanted to join the band.
What have been your influences and how have they affected your music?
We find it really hard to pin-down our influences, we never think 'we've been influenced by this and that' but obviously we have been kind of sun-consciously affected by certain things. It's hard to nail them down, Dan's a massive Rufus Wainwright fan, I'm a big Elliot Smith fan and Tord listens to lots of obscure, strange music.
What's your favourite album of 2007?
I really like The Twang's album, I think they're really good, the Pigeon Detectives' is a really amazing album. The Enemy's album is really good. We haven't had a chance to listen to much music this year, I lost my iPod and when we do listen to other music we often listen to much older stuff.
How is the current tour going?
It's amazing. It's like a step up for us into bigger venues and because the albums out and everyone knows the songs and it's really refreshing. We've been around Europe and we packed out most of the venues. Before the album people over there only really knew 'Kill The Director' and 'Let's Dance to Joy Division' -well only really 'Let's Dance to Joy Division' to be honest - now over here, the audience are loving everything.
What would you say has been your favourite venue on the tour so far?
Koko in London definitely. It used to be the Camden Palace, it's got four balconies and it's just a beautiful venue but we also really like the grottier, smaller venues. We're really looking forward to Liverpool on this tour.
Some have compared you to the Beatles? What do you think about this comparison?
Who the hell said that!? (-fans-) Oh right. That's silly. Let's
see if we get 7 albums out first before any kind of comparison.
I think it's just because you're from Liverpool?
Yeah that's sounds about right!
The NME are quoted as saying your album is full of 'GCSE notebook' lyrics - do you think this is true?
No, I don't really think they're 'GCSE Notebook' lyrics at all. They're kind of self-deprecating and can be quite childish at times, not childish, no, naïve at times. I think that's what happens, when you write honest songs or whatever then obviously your insecurities are going to come across as naïve, especially when you're young people like us.
Are you excited about Christmas and what do you plan to do over the festive season?
We will have done 273 gigs this year by the time it's Christmas so when it's finished I'm probably just going to pass out. No, I'm really looking forward to seeing family, girlfriend, friends but I guess it'll probably involve even more drinking. I'm just going to do absolutely fuck all and then next year I'll start writing again.
What was it like when you first heard one of your songs on Radio 1?
I think it was two years ago when we were in Dover and it was ridiculous. You kind of think nothing of it then you realise you just want more and more and more. It's a great feeling but for some reason I didn't hear anything on the radio for ages.
'Let's Dance to Joy Division' was song of the week on nearly every Radio 1 show upon its release - how did that feel?
It was great, especially when it was Jo Whiley's track of the week; it definitely made me think 'Wow things are different now, we're moving up in the world!'
And it was Zane Lowe's hottest record in the world…
Yeah he's a legend; I think every track we've released has been his hottest record in the world!
What's been the highlight of 2007 for you?
We went to Japan, which was pretty amazing. I think the highlight was when we went to America and did 5 dates. When we came back from that 'Kill the Director' had been hammered all over the radio and we played V festival it was crazy - 4000 people were there and they all knew the words, it was amazing.
What does 2008 have in store for The Wombats?
I really want to do Glastonbury again, on a bigger stage, and just absolutely 'rince it!' Just tour the album continuously and hopefully start writing for the second album at the end of next year. At the moment I just really want to go and write some new music but we've just been so busy.