have been around for longer than you think. And how many people out
there recently realised that they have actually been their favourite
band for the last few years without having actually realised it before?
Anyway, after several previous interviews with Atomicduster, we finally
managed to track down frontman Tim Wheeler who spoke frankly about porn
videos, slasher flicks and S Club. Hmmm.
AD: Right, first things first. Being the sad, anorak Ash fan that I
am, I have read through every one of the thank yous on my
promotional copy of Intergalactic Sonic 7s and couldnt
help but notice the names Darius Danesh and S Club! Have I missed something
TW: Well, Darius appeared on stage with us in Leeds. Hed been
voted the biggest knob on the planet previously by our fans,
and then we met him at a Virgin Megastore where we were doing a signing
session. He told us that he used to sing Girl From Mars
in a band he used to be in so we got him up on stage to do that song
AD: How did that go down with your fans? Really well?
TW: No, they were mortified!
AD: Understandably so! And whats your excuse for S Club?
TW: We met on a few TV programmes, hung out and shared some spliffs
AD: Hang on a minute
you cant say that about S Club!
TW: Oh no
we just hung out together. Ahem.
AD: You didnt hang out with S Club Juniors too did you?
TW: God no! Thats just sick. Its child labour.
AD: So, anyway, moving on
Having exceeded a pinnacle point in
your career three successful albums behind you (as well as the
debut mini album Trailer), and a summation of your history
in the forthcoming greatest hits collection, have you considered exploring
other forms of media?
TW: I prefer to call it a singles collection than a
greatest hits album. But yeah, were actually making
our own slasher flick as we speak. Its gonna be really cool because
its got people like Moby, Dave Grohl and James Nesbitt in it.
We all get killed in the end. In fact, Charlottes really unlucky
and she ends up being killed twice!
AD: Of course that was nearly a reality recently wasnt it?
TW: Yeah, the bus crash. Ricks the worst hes
still in pain, but he still managed to play Reading and Leeds even though
the doctor told him here was no way he should perform. That was a really
frightening experience. We were on the way from San Francisco to Seattle
and our bus driver swerved to avoid a shredded up tyre in the middle
of the road. Anyway it took out the fan belt and the radiator so you
can imagine how scary that was at seven oclock in the morning.
It certainly woke us up I can tell you.
AD: Ill bet. Now then, last time I interviewed Charlotte, I
mentioned that I had read somewhere that youd made your own porn
video. She just went Er..no
that wasnt Tim, but there
WAS an incident with a very bendy rubber man! I didnt press
further at the time can you shed any more light on the matter?
TW: My own porn video? God, where did you get THAT from? Ive
never made on yet but, hey, you never know! I think what they may have
been referring to was the video for Numbskull. The idea
for that was to make a video that pushed the envelope of what you can
show on music television in the day. Regarding what Charlotte says,
I really have no idea what shes going on about
she just goes off on one!
AD: So, going back to Intergalactic Sonic 7s, why
have you chosen now to release a singles collection? Theres
not a split on the horizon is there?
TW: No. Definitely not. We decided to do it now because weve
been together for ten years and most people dont realise how many
singles weve released. Most people will play the album and think
Oh God yeah I remember this one so many times, so we just
thought wed remind people. We thought it was a good way for people
to start taking us more seriously too. Plus we had Envy
and releasing the album gives us more time to get songs ready for the
next one. Weve been spending so much time in America lately that
we havent had much time for anything else. Its really exciting
as weve been invited to tour with the Foo Fighters in the States.
I met Dave Grohl at the awards on Tuesday night and it was weird as
Ive been such a fan of his work over the years, so its such
an honour to be touring with them.
AD: And maybe its because you are still a fan that Ash are
so fan friendly. For example you ran a competition recently for unsigned
bands to cover one of your singles and win the chance to feature on
one of your B-sides and play several tour dates with Ash. How has that
TW: That was amazing. We had such a huge response for it. We did
it this morning actually for XFM we had to get up and soundcheck
at 6am, and we played between 8 and 9am. The band that won did this
incredible death metal version of Candy, but there were
so many brilliant tracks that were thinking of making a mini album
of all the best tracks and putting it out in its own right. The winners
were called Ten Masked Men, but there were only six of them, so they
.which is great.
AD: Whos the stupidest person in rock n roll youve
TW: Well the STRANGEST was a girl at a signing we did who wanted
us to sign her burn scar tissue. That was really strange, but pretty
cool too we thought. The stupidest? Probably any number of these American
bands who are so inroad looking and only have one song that they play
over and over again
AD: This sounds like were leading on to a band that you made
some hilarious comments about in the NME last Christmas Linkin
TW: Oh God. I dont mean to slag bands off because its
just music after all. But Linkin Park are just so ANGRY. Some of these
American bands just have absolutely no sense of humour. I blame the
parents myself. I just find bands who cant laugh at themselves
AD: On the other hand, I was delighted when you played the NME Carling
gig at the London Astoria earlier this year with some friends of Atomicduster,
also one of our favourite bands Jetplane Landing
TW: They were absolutely brilliant and the albums fucking
superb. We really bigged them up to the audience. Id kill to get
them on tour with us. Actually thats a point
I think one
of thems still got one of our amps
Oops. Better end it there I guess. Hopefully the two bands will get
together for several dates as that really would be my idea of musical
utopia. Anyway, you remember the old Bill and Ted films, where their
music ends up being essential to world peace? Well I reckon Ash are
so good that they might end up doing so as well. Or maybe, knowing Mr.Wheeler
and co, well just end up very, very drunk. Me, Im not fussed
Interview and transcript by Tone E