Echo and the Bunnymen speak to iomtoday

Echo and The Bunnymen

Echo and The Bunnymen

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Legendary cult band Echo and the Bunnymen come to the Villa Marina on Saturday.

The band had mainstream success in the 1980s with 10 top 40 hits including classics such as The Killing Moon, The Cutter, Never Stop, Seven Seas and Bring on the Dancing Horses.

Albums ‘Heaven up Here’, ‘Porcupine’, ‘Ocean Rain’ and ‘Echo and the Bunnymen’ all made the top 10 before the band split in 1988 when singer Ian McCulloch went solo.

After an unsuccessful stint with a new singer the band split in 1993 before reforming with McCulloch in 1997 and they have been together again ever since.

We spoke to guitarist Will Sergeant about recording, touring, the current music scene and the future.

‘I’ve been before in the early 90s I rode around the island on a tandem bike with my wife and enjoyed it,’ said Will.

Asked what fans can expect on Saturday and if there are more albums to come, he said: ‘We’ll be playing two or three off the last album (Meteorites), a couple of new ones and all the older stuff like The Killing Moon.’

The band are about to embark on tour which will include several dates in America but have not been fans of going there in the past.

Will said: ‘It’s a bit better now, the buses are a bit nicer, the places we’re playing are very close to each other so we’re only going short distances.

‘I didn’t like America at all, it’s taken a while, it’s sort of not their The band are about to embark on tour which will include several dates in America but have not been fans of going there in the past.

Will said: ‘It’s a bit better now, the buses are a bit nicer, the places we’re playing are very close to each other so we’re only going short distances.

‘I didn’t like America at all, it’s taken a while, it’s sort of not there fault, all that “Have a nice day”, to us it was dead phoney. fault, all that “Have a nice day”, to us it was dead phoney.

‘We did a tour playing the ‘Crocodiles’ and ‘Heaven up Here’ albums, I never sit around listening to our stuff after writing it, I had to listen then and I was quite surprised how good they sounded.

‘Ocean Rain is a great album, we were trying to do something that wouldn’t fade away. But Heaven up Here is probably my favourite.

‘When we first started recording it was all new to us, we had Hugh Jones producing Heaven up Here and he knew what he was doing, he could manipulate sounds and opened our eyes.

‘He would do things like put an amp down one end of the corridor and the mic down the other end and record.

‘He had Pete, our drummer, playing the slit drum, he had us trying different things, working with recorders bending the notes.’

Asked if there will be another Bunnymen album Will said: ‘It could depend on finances. There has been talk of another album but we haven’t got a label pushing us to write, in the past we’d do John Peel Sessions and that would sometimes give us a kick up the bum to write songs.’

Bands like The Witches, British Sea Power, Orval Sibelius, Tame Impala and Temples are amongst the guitarist current favourites but he is not impressed with today’s charts.

‘You don’t know what’s number one these days, there’s not the same kudos. I hate it, it’s like Simon Cowell has a stranglehold. You only need about 4,000 sales to get in the charts these days.

‘When we were in the charts there were a lot of rules about what you could own but he has record label, tv show to push his own artists.

‘But everyone laps it up. We done a show in Istanbul sponsored by some digital download people, which they were obviously trying to promote and they asked what I thought the internet had done for music and I just said it’s reduced music to the value of toilet paper.

‘Anyone who has got a passion about music has gone back to vinyl.

Will has his own solo project, Glide, which he has also been working on.

‘I’ve just done a new one, just finished the cover, I like doing it, I did play live a while back, supporting the Bunnymen, it was good fun, half an hour or so, it was convenient.

‘I have been thinking about doing more. I don’t know if people will want to hear it.’

So how long does he see the Bunnymen lasting ?

‘Who knows? I always find it a strange question. It’s my job. I’m travelling the world playing music with my mates, going to great places.

‘Look at people like BB King or Ken Dodd, no one expects them to retire.

‘We’ve been going longer now since we got back together with Ian than we were the first time.

‘Last year we were all over South America and everywhere was chocca, places like Argentina and we were playing to full houses.

‘I’m travelling the world playing music with my mates, going to great places.’

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