Peter Robinson Vs
Gaz Coombes, Supergrass
If you're thinking of happy slapping him, you'd best bring some big friends
Hello, Gaz. Do you enter 2006 with a new optimism, or is it going to be a bit s**t like 2005? What's the vibe so far?
"Well 2005 was a bit crappy, wasn't it? I don't know why... No specific reasons, it just wasn't eventful. But the year before - a great year! We're definitely due a decent year in 2006. And as a band we've got a lot of writing to get on with so we can make another great record."
You've only just had a bloody record out! Is it not a bit depressing just doing record/tour/record/tour until you die?
. Things will not always remain the same. I think as long as you're happy it's alright, and we always come out of a record with more drive and excitement. We're always thinking about the next one. There's always new ways to blow an audience away."
Like with a wind machine?
"Apart from with wind machines."
2006: Year Of The Dog. Where do you stand on dogs?
"Well, I found my dad's dog eating s**t out of my daughter's nappy earlier today, which I found rather troubling. All those times I've walked in and the dog's licked my face seem rather less magical now. The s**t-eating really hasn't gone down too well. Although, on the other hand, we've all got to eat something, haven't we? They've got a good life, dogs. They don't know about consequence or fate or even question the world. It would be nice to be a dog. I'd like not to have to think analytically about everything, or anything.
Or you could join a boyband. Do you employ a window cleaner?
"No, but we haven't been in our house for very long, so we might do."
What's in your pockets, Gaz?
"A Packet of ciggies, 40 quid, and a small bag of grass."
Well, 40 pounds is a lot to carry around in cash.
"I just found it on the floor!"
"...honest, Officer." Are the floors of you house lined with cash?
"Well, you know, there are these little areas where you might just find money. I've just been around the house working on the video we're going to put out with our next single."
But it's the middle of December! You're cutting it a bit fine, Gaz. The single's out in January.
"Well, it's not a proper video. It's homemade."
The single's only out on seven-inch and download, and now you're doing your video at home. Are you releasing it on Poundstretcher Records?
"We weren't going to do a full release with a massive video - it's sort of a half-single to keep things ticking over. It should be good."
What is your New Year's resolution?
"I should probably knock the smoking on the head, actually. I'm doing that when I'm 30, which is this year, and I'm sure I'll be having a knees up of some description."
You weren't on G4's recent 'G4 And Friends' album, although a lot of other famous people were. Why not?
"I don't think I would really class myself as a friend of G4. Having said that, I did once walk past them in Covent Garden, before they were famous."
That's nice. If you were to die in 2006, which date would you choose to die on?
"I don't know. When did Elvis die - August? I would die then. But in an ideal world I wouldn't choose to die."
How would you react if "the kids" happy slapped you, perhaps by throwing chips at your head?
"If they happy slapped me I'd get a gang of much bigger boys to happy slap them even harder. It will be a slap of the very unhappy variety."
Imagine deafness strikes Gaz from Supergrass! What else could you do for a living?
"Well, I would like to think I could somehow do some sort of music without hearing. What else... Painting? I mean, it is a bit like saying you'd can't do anything if you're deaf, isn't it?"
Not really, I think there's a specific link between making sounds and being able to hear sounds.
"Well, I'm sure I could deal with it. But I mean, anything could happen to you - you could lose a leg, for example. The problem I have is that I know that if I somehow did die, we would probably sell a lot more records. But I wouldn't get to see any of it."
The ultimate sacrifice!
"It's a dilemma, isn't it? But we'll see, eh?"
NME - 31 December 2005
- On the day we spoke, Gaz's daughter had been going a bit beserk. This was one of her "moments of being a complete nutcase".
- Gaz believes that re-introducing compulsory national service would be a bad idea.
- He wasn't sure about Arctiv Monkeys on the basis of that single, but thinks they're quite a good band.