There’s no Gn’R link here, I just thought I’d borrow some of Axl’s immortal words to succinctly pinpoint where we’ve got to of late. We don’t write very often so in order to properly put you in the picture I’ll have to wind the clock back a bit…
In the beginning…
Well, not quite the beginning, but a few years ago; there were 4 lads being a rock band and doing it pretty bloody well. Phil, Martin, Alex and Tom. We played our little hearts out, nearly killed ourselves with gigging, made appearances at Glastonbury and other festivals, became a regular feature on BBC 6music and started getting airplay on Radios 1&2, TVs Channel 4 and ITV… good times. Get the private jet ordered etc.
While we were reaching our pinnacle though, something really terrible was happening and despite several re-writes I still don’t think I can find adequate words to say this properly; our poor Alex was dying. Our best friend & bass player was losing a horrific battle. Eventually we would have to say goodbye and find a way to go on as something different. We love you Alex and it will never be the same without you.
During this difficult time there were some moments of levity and we should take a moment to give some due credit to some special people. During The tough times we had the pleasure of having some wonderful, selfless individuals step temporarily into the breach and we did in fact play some fantastic gigs. John Head, Simon Allen (who sometimes opened for us solo and was a bloody tough act to follow!) and The Heavy’s Spencer Page all helped us out on the 4-string and gave us some memorable nights. Spence actually flew home from a previous The Heavy gig in Paris to play one of our album launches and Alex – in attendance that night – couldn’t have been more chuffed. Our high-profile stand-in was almost as good as the big man himself 🙂 Huge credit, love and thanks here must go to Alex, his wife Stacey and the family for continuing to stay strong and support the band throughout. Thank you.
Moving forward a little, eventually we enlisted the help of a young man by the name of Richard Beeby, who – having blown us away over a couple of gigs – agreed to join the family full-time as the newest Centrefold. Rich is one of those annoying bastards who can play everyone’s instruments as well (often better) than they can, and he’s also a brilliant writer & singer who would bring a wealth of new influences to the fold (pardon the pun).
Good story, what happened next?
So, we went on to win 2 Mercury prizes, sell 8 million records and sell out Wembley Stadium 4 nights in a row with an album hailed by Thom Yorke as “…the one I wish I’d written.” Wait…no. No, not quite. You would think that we were now all set and that it should be plain-sailing with our new, fully armed, primed & prepped 4-piece, but actually something else turned out to be true: ‘coming back’ is really, really hard.
How do you relaunch yourself after something so catastrophic? How soon is too soon? Can you still use the old stuff? What changes should you make? Well, in all honesty it took us a long, long time to really get back on our feet and decide what we wanted to do, hence a very long period of radio silence. Literally. And then, after trying to rejuvenate some old favourites we thought we’d do something different…we decided to change our name and write a completely new set.
Ok, so the renaming of the band didn’t go so well (if you’ve ever had to name a band you’ll be able to picture the scenes where we endlessly kicked countless tragic suggestions around) (Countless Tragic Suggestions could have been on the list). In fact, we decided that the best thing we could do is fly our original flag high in honour of all that we’d accomplished and been through so far. Centrefolds were back in the game and hammering out some really quite exciting new sounds.
Well that brings us about up-to-date. We premiered some new tunes to a happy audience as part of the Pilton Party and we’re in the process of getting some more nailed. We’ll be making a few appearances at some of this year’s festivals and will be fully locked, loaded & firing on all cylinders in time for our Christmas explosion later this year (more details to follow, watch this space). Then…roll on 2018.