So we can expect your new album A Spanner In The Works to be released on December 1st. Have you incorporated any new ideas into this record?
Yeah, very much so. The recording process for this is much different to all my past records. There are no guitars on the record and it I’ve made it solely on a laptop. I mean it’s record number eight and I came up with the name first. I was just with and it and it was on the day my last record was released I was gonna come up with a new idea and I knew straight away that by removing the guitars you already create a different kind of sound. I employed that guy to produce it and it was like – you know – bloody laptops these days, you can do almost anything. It was good fun and I’m pretty proud of the record. I’m not in any rush to make another album right now. It’s kind of amazing, the endless sounds you can get on a laptop. Although it is possible to fall down this rabbit hole of sounds and having to find yourself crawling back out. It was just an amazing thing knowing you didn’t need a studio to record an album. Next year, however, I think I’ll grab a guitar and go back into the studio.
Awesome! On your birthday this year, you’re playing in Norwich. Is there any sentiment there at all?
The tour was just kind of routed that way. You know, I like Norwich, The Owl Sanctuary is a top venue, it stayed closed earlier this year, but the venue stood their ground and got the community around it. They said there was no saving it and it seemed like such an important place to go and I appreciate Norwich for that, for keeping the dream alive.
The news struck us today (7th November) of Leonard Cohen’s death.
Yeah I literally just sat here listening through, it was quite tragic.
It was yes, he was – what, 82? – and he was releasing really good material. My question is: how did the news hit and you and what was your favourite Cohen song?
[Laughs] It’s funny because we were literally just talking about it! A friend of mine used to do this thing where she’d chose a songwriter and everybody would come round and you would cover one of the songs, she’s done all sorts over the years. The first one she did was Leonard Cohen and the song I did – which I wouldn’t say was my favourite – was Everybody Knows. Every band or songwriter that covered that song on the night, took it and put it in their set and that to me, is a really beautiful memory. And yeah, you know, that really shows how powerful it can be and how everybody can take it on board and present it in their own way.
Beautiful answer, thank you. So, Donald Trump: how does this make you feel? As I know you’re very strong about politics.
Yeah, well, you know, it’s terrifying – the whole world was flushed down the toilet ages ago. If I’m honest, I’m kind of glad I’m facing up to the fact that I’ve been living in a bubble, and in my own bubble everybody is kind and caring. Slowly, that bubble is being burst and people aren’t so kind and caring. I wanna go back to the bubble. I would say that we’re the kind of sane-minded people and that those that called him an idiot, are wrong: he’s know the most powerful man in the world. Everything is now about to unfold and the core of everything I do is just spread positive messages and I now get to do that more than ever but it’s also harder to put it all into a “it’s all going to be okay” singalong.
Mr Corbyn said some wise words on it…
Yeah you’re right, and I’ve lot a lot of time for Corbyn – same with Bernie Sanders too. I think now it’s a case of if Bernie was there instead of Hilary, could he of beat Trump? You know, that’s just what I want but that’s not the reality of it and the dream just goes back in the bubble, doesn’t it? People don’t want nice people they just want arseholes in charge.
I wholeheartedly agree. Straying away from politics, when coming up with your name Beans On Toast, were there any alternatives considered?
No, not really. I never thought the name was gonna last that long so I feel like I have to justify it over the years. It was quite a throwaway but I think it describes what I do quite well.
It certainly does! It fits with your conversational lyrics. Do you actually like beans on toast?
Yeah, I’m not mad on it but I’ll eat it.
Have you managed to get a gig at Glastonbury since you released that record?
Oh yeah, definitely I got one within a year of that song but this year I was on the Avalon Stage and I played that song this year and finally put it to bed, I thought I’d play it now and I’ll never have to play it again. It’s run its course.