The Press Article
It's 9am London time and Supergrass drummer Danny Goffey is struggling to stay awake. When he finally answers my phone call I'm greeted by man-sized yawns and a sheepish "Sorry, I've just woken up." Its tough being Supergrass. Just like the band's recently released self-titled album, today Goffey is all unpretentious restraint and subtlety. Have Supergrass finally matured? And what ever happened to the lovable brats of first album I Should Coco? Its follow up In It For The Money certainly reeked of enough mellowness and nonchalance to convince most that they had been put to bed. For good. The drummer however, insists that they are still the same band.
"You get a lot more relaxed about stuff as you get older. When we first started we were pretty naive. There was lots of young energy. We didn't know how to be in a band or what to do. But not a a huge deal has changed."
Who can forget the raucous youthfulness of their debut single Caught By The Fuzz. Or the anthemic Alright or Going Out. A lot has changed since the rampant cheekiness of their early days. These days Supergrass are more likely to resemble a well-oiled machine. They've already turned down an invitation to collaborate with Steven Speilberg on a television series, but a recent invitation to lend their voices to computer game Silver proved hard to resist.
"There are just more people involved in the band. And there are more people to get in the way," he laughs. "When we did the first album we didn't even have a manager. We just had a friend of ours helping us out with the albums, but now there's so many people involved. You get asked to do loads of stuff. We have a huge crew now and loads of musical gear we cart around."
And since the release of their third album late last year obligatory band duties have necessitated the trio travel down that well-worn road that is otherwise known as endless touring.
"We've just toured all around Europe, England and stuff like that. We're just about to go to Japan and then over to you guys before doing a bit more of America. We've had all of Christmas off but we're about to start again."
"I don't know what the worst thing about touring is. Proabably leaving me kids behind (Goffey has two sons). There's lots of guilt. There's no chance of taking the kids along if it's a huge tour but they do come to meet us at festivals and things like that. But being on a bus probably wouldn't be that enjoyable for them, imagine travelling around with ten blokes....who all fart."
"But I don't really think there's too many terrible things about touring. Maybe just getting a bit lonely. There's loads of guys on the tour but you just miss friends and stuff." He pauses, and then adds as an afterthought, "it's better than working in a factory though."
The current world-tour includes a long-awaited return to these very shores as well as a visit to Japan, the home of extravagant fan presents and mob-scenes that would give the Beatles in their heyday a recent run for their money.
"We go to Japan a couple of times every album so this will be our sixth time. As for the fans, we'll hve to wait and see what happens. It's proabably calmed down a bit. I does get quite mad. I remmeber being in Osaka, it was just after a sound check and we were trying to have a look at the shops and there was a bunch of kids following us around. It was like a big mob following us from shop to shop. It was quite funny but it depends on what mood you're in. If you're in a stupid mood then you can just have a laugh. If you don't want it to happen, though, i can be a bit annoying."
Which brings us to the glorious underatated beauty of the latest album. What's so good about it, Danny?
"It's hard to say. We produced it ourselves again. We spent a lot of time getting the songs together so when we finally went into the studio it was a bit more organised. It's got good songs on it which is probably the best thing about it."
"It was easier than the last album, definitely. Just one thing, it took a while to finish off all the lyrics. We ended up with a lot of singing, so it took a lot longer to make sense of the songs. But we've still got it in us."
The album features the single Pumping On Your Stereo, complete with ace film clip put together in conjunction with the Jim Henson creature shop.
"I live in Camden and their office is just down the road. They were up for it. They liked the idea of old school puppet-making like Sesame Street in the '70s. So they just thought it would be a funny idea. They didn't have to twist our arms about it."
And something that may surprise people is that songs have alredy been writen for the next album. Goffey explains this rampant display of workaholism as nothing more than the stuff that makes you a musician.
"We've just had a month or so at home, and part of the nature of being musicians is that after a few days you need to play on the piano or the guitar. There's always songs being written. Even when we were doing this album there were always songs we could have used. We're not at the stage we're recording new music, but writing is an ongoing thing. When we do sound checks we test out new songs and stuff like that. So yeah..."
"It must be all very boring for you to listen to me waffling on," he says suddenly, with a laugh.
Thank God for the music then.
Anastasia Safioleas, INPRESS - 16 February 2000