The Press Article
Supergrass: 'Pump Action'
Supergrass are reporting mixed reactions to the news that "Alright" has been rewritten for the terraces at Manchester United's ground.
"He's Called Dwight" - the new version of the band's 1995 summer smash - has been penned by Old Trafford songster and indie DJ Pete Boyle.
Offering "sincere apologies to Supergrass", Boyle pays tribute to United striker Dwight Yorke.
Supergrass drummer Danny Goffey told The Maker this week: "Gaz [Coombes] is quite happy about it. It's good for Gaz-boy cos he's a Manchester United supporter. I'm not too bothered. I support Tottenham - Spurs...from my armchair."
The new lyrics run: "He is young/He runs free/Keeps his teeth/Nice and clean/He wears number 19/He's called Dwight.
"The matchday/He goes out/He will score/There's no doubt/Tries with all/Of his might/He's called Dwight."
Chorus: "And we like him/Oh, that's for sure/Obviously/He's a red/Scoring goals/With his head.
"Cos he is young/Full of guile/Celebrating in style/Sing his name/If you like/He's called Dwight.
"Snapped him up/For 12 mill/Score for us?/Course he will/Beat the Charlton one-nil/He's called Dwight."
Danny was talking in the week that Supergrass unveiled their new single, "Pumping On Your Stereo", which is released by Parlophone on May 24.
Recorded in Cornwall last summer and co-produced by John Cornfield and the band, it features four remarkable B-sides, with Danny and Micky Quinn included as lead vocalists.
"Pumping On Your Stereo" is an up-tempo, good-time, rock'n'roll song with a repetitious, sing-along hookline which will be a gift to radio. The cheery atmosphere is consolidated by good-humoured backing vocals and an outburst of clapping at the end.
"Supergrass Go Glam!" joked Danny.
"It came about when we were just in our rehearsal studio and we all started singing it over three chords. It's quite easy to play. The easier the song is to play, the better we play it. It just happened really quickly. It was one of those songs that just comes together in 10 minutes.
"The clapping was a mistake, really. We had 20 people doing handclaps along to the songs. They were a bit happy and they just kept on clapping."
Melody Maker was pleased to hear that the handclaps are those of real people.
"There's not too many synthetics on the album," said Danny. "We were trying to keep it raw. We didn't really have any plans of what to do, just play it by ear as we go along. We wanted to record the songs quite quickly down in a room, and then fiddle around with them for about a year! It's quite an honest album.
"The last one was pretty spontaneous. We only had half the songs written. This one we rehearsed quite a lot and got the songs so we could play them well before it started. It was a lot easier to do this album."
Of the B-sides, which were recorded in different locations over three days, Danny conceded: "They're quite a mad collection."
"You'll Never Walk Again" is a soft, sweet-sounding track with acoustic guitar and the band crooning three-part harmonies as they offer: Come and have a go if you think you're hard enough/Cos you're gonna get your f***in' heads kicked in/Come and have a go if you think you're hard enough/Cos you're going home in a foreign ambulance".
"That was just a demo we did on our eight-track," says Danny. "It's just the three of us around the mic. It's about the riots at France '98, the World Cup. It's just a really stupid song. It just happened. Probably either Gaz or Micky started singing it and we all joined in. Then we overdubbed some stupid cowbells on it."
"Sick" is a heavy-sounding Supergrass ode to, yes, being sick.
"I wrote the music on the piano," said Danny. "Then we all chipped in with the lyrics. It was just a funny kind of thing, with double meanings - 'I've been sick' either literally or sick in the head. It's just a dirty song. We did that at our manager's studio in Oxford. I had a really old drumkit, and it was just in a room playing everything loud. We overdubbed a couple of guitars on top."
"What A Shame" returns to upbeat, rocky mode with Danny contributing lead vocals.
"It's my Ringo Starr number," he quipped. "Gaz couldn't be arsed to sing it. It's pretty rock'n'roll. It's up there. We had a fair bit of time off after the last album and we were just up for doing some more mental songs, a bit more exciting. There's no theories behind it."
"Lucky (No Fear)" features Micky singing an ingeniously melodic tale about the things that can happen when you're pissed, like waking up after a party with the cat instead of the girl.
"The lyrics came from the back of Micky's head, the girls of his adolescence," said Danny. "That's what Supergrass' life was. We just made it up, sitting around with an acoustic guitar, pretty quickly before we recorded it."
Supergrass are still putting the final touches to the album, which will be released in September. Before that comes another single in the summer.
In the meantime, they're gearing up for some live shows. Next month they appear at Leeds Town & Country (May 11), Glasgow Barrowlands (12) and London Shepherd's Bush Empire (13, as part of the MTV concert series, Five Night Stand).
The band are also on this year's V99 bill at Chelmsford Hylands Park (August 21) and Stafforshire Weston Park (22).
Support at the rapidly selling-out gig at Shepherd's Bush is from Medal, and tickets for all the above dates are on sale from all the usual outlets and the Melody Maker ticketline.
The band are also tipped to play Glastonbury, and will play a full UK tour to coincide with the album release.
Melody Maker - 17 April 1999