The Computers are playing in Europe as I write this, they are also playing in Exeter on December 11th 2015 and we were fortunate to catch Aidan, sat in a Dutch coffee shop with some time to kill, he was more than happy to chat about their recent gig in Paris, ideal Christmas gifts and how they approached the recording of their new album, here's how we got on....
You played in Paris just a couple of weeks after the horrific scenes that we witnessed at the Eagles of Death metal show where over 80 people lost their lives, what was the overall mood like when you played?
There was a feeling of solidarity. It seems in true French nature, the French public have not been put off by the horrific events. They have retaliated by turning up to shows with a fearless positive vibe. We will not let the bastards get us down.
Having just played a number of European dates, do you find that you are received better in any one particular country? If so, why do you think this is?
For some reason we are always very well received in Germany. We have played a lot of shows there. And of course being in the UK where there is no language barrier and so we are always well received wherever we rock up. Particularly in the north, Manchester and Newcastle really love the computers. Why? Maybe because the North breeds a lot of real honest bands, The Smiths, Oasis, Joy Division, Stone Roses ect... I would like to believe we can be viewed in the same light, but who knows?
You're back in Exeter on December 11th at The Phoenix, is this the big Christmas party like the one you played in 2013?
It hasn't been billed as a Christmas party, but of course it will be a Computers party. We haven't played in Exeter for two years so there is a lot of anticipation for the show. New songs, new show. Really should be a lot of fun. The last show of a month run too should be tight as fuck!
Your new EP 'Want the News? Here's the Blues' is now available, did you approach the recording process any differently to previous recordings?
This time around the process was quite different. Previously we would right songs whilst on the road. Then record an album in a short amount of time off we had between touring. And we always record live. However, this time around we had a lot more time to write and arrange the songs. We self recorded for months and months, trying all different versions of songs. We settled on "Want the News" after messing around with a drum beat. The beat from "Mamma Said Knock You Out" by LL Cool Jay, then the song just developed. As for recording, we recorded the drums, bass and guitars live and then added a lot more on top. This whole album is a lot more "produced" than the previous albums. A never ending experiment for sonic harmony!
Tell me how you got to work with David McEwan who produced Plan B's, Nitin Sawhney's albums?
We made a list of producers names who we would like to work with. Based on albums they had worked on. Dave McEwan was on the top of the list due to his involvement with Plan B's album "The Deformation of Strickland Banks" which we are all huge fans of. Our manger contacted him, played him our demos and he said yeah, met up, had a drink, after that he came to our show, a month later were in the studio laying it down.
You lost a couple of band members a while back and have since recruited to replace these, did you have to hold 'X-Factor' style auditions in order to find the right people for the band?
No not at all, not our style. When doing this for as long as we have, you have a circle of friends who play music. Our bass player Tom McMahon was an easy find as he's been in our world for years, a 'pure' soul from the village. As for James Mattock...people like him don't come around every day. Previously the singer of 'sharks', one of my favourite bands, we are blessed with his presence.
Over the years I've seen you dressed all in white, black suits, burgundy suits and now flowered shirts, what's next, denim dungarees?
Ha! you're a bit late to the party there mate, we have already been snapped in nothing but a pair of denim dungarees. This happened when we were recording our 'Love Triangles' album in Georgia, It felt like the right thing to do! As for the next garbs, who knows, we try to mirror our image to our sound. The future is unwritten....
You launched your last album (Love Triangles Hate Squares) a couple of years ago via a boat party from Exmouth (I remember it well), what plans are afoot for the release of the next album in Spring 2016?
The plan for 2016 is looking heavy, all the same procedures, touring touring touring, radio, touring, festivals, touring, videos, videos videos, more touring. All that but with but on a bigger wave with a bigger board!
Christmas is coming soon, what would be the PERFECT gift to get The Computers this year?
- The abolishment of all religions or
We'd like to thank Aidan and Al for taking the time to answer our questions, we're really looking forward to their show at the Exeter Phoenix Arts Centre on December 11th, if you're yet to buy your tickets, I'd do so NOW as they are VERY close to selling out, more details below....
Fri 11 Dec 2015 | Doors 7.30pm | £9 | Standing | Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult
you can buy your tickets HERE
+ Then Thickens
+ Black Foxxes
+ The Mocking Birds
Think Black Flag playing James Brown, or The Nerve Agents covering Elvis Costello and you’re starting to get the picture. More punk rock and roll soul from Exeter’s favourite garage rockers.
7.45 – 8.10: The Mocking Birds
8.20 – 8.45: Black Foxxes
9.00 – 9.30: Then Thickens
9.50 – 11.00: The Computers
‘Absolutely cracking tunes… The Computers deliver a wholly satisfying sound that won’t go stale any time soon.’ - BBC MUSIC