We’ve reached a point now where we feel as if we’ve prostituted ourselves so fucking much, just given and given, that we’ve given everything away, and we’ve got absolutely fucking nothing left of our own. And we played up to that, you know - ‘culture sluts’. But these things catch up with you.
I’m glad of the fact that at least it represents our youth, it doesn’t sound like we’re tired and cynical already. It does sound… revolutionary is a strong word, but it sounds inspired, it sounds like here’s a band with so many ideas and so much energy. It’s the one chance you get, to do it at that age, to just feel fearless. I just felt so brave back then, no matter how much shit we talked and no matter how badly sometimes me and Richey would play, to still think we could conquer the world… it’s a mixture of delusion and bravery, but I’d love to be able to feel like that again.
For about a year, from leaving university through the first year of the band, that’s what I was, really. But my body was so shit it just gave up, my liver packed in! I was only fucking drinking Babycham; it’s so un-rock & roll! We were driving over the Yorkshire Dales or the Lancashire Moors, and I just turned into a blubbing heap, I just wanted to go home and see my mum. I still feel like that a lot now, really. I was still living at home, and it was always a relief to get home.
People just love being loved. I think the digital age has allowed that, because you can measure your love on the internet. Your friends or whatever, and I think that’s had a big impact; people desperately want to be accepted. And that becomes… I call it ‘massification.’
I have a lot of traditional male traits, most obviously my love of sport. But as a kid, I was very close to my mother so I think I acquired a real fascination and kinship with the female side. I would always rather stay in and piss around with make-up in front of the mirror than go down to the pub. I still try Rachel’s dresses on and stuff like that even though they’re miles too small for me. All that is part of who I am. My nickname was Shirley at school.