This morning, I had a quick chat with Andy Burrows, ex-drummer from Razorlight, who is gearing up to release the debut album of his newest project, I Am Arrows. Here's what he had to say!
What musically influenced I Am Arrows, and how do you think that relates to anything that you've been in before?
Well I suppose it's the greats that influence probably the most of us - like The Beach Boys and The Beatles, and The Rolling Stones and all that kind of stuff. The kind of melody and the old school approach to recording and writing songs - I think that's definitely a heavy influence on me, and I'd probably say the same about Johnny (Borrell, of Razorlight), and lots of other people I'm sure. It always just harps back to the melody, and strong songs, and the old school recording technique of just playing live are all in there.
What are your views on illegal downloading?
It's a toughie really - I don't really have a strong feeling either way, mainly because on the illegal downloading side, it's obvious that people are going to do that sometimes, because it's free. And at the end of the day, money is hard to come by, so if you can get the same thing for free or for money, you're obviously going to go for the free option. But at the same time, as somebody who writes and plays music for a living, it gets difficult, because I think that we as songwriters feel like that's our work, and that's our craft. I always think of it as my close mate - he's a carpenter, and if he spends ages slaving over a bench or a table, nobody would expect to walk past his store and steal it. So it's obviously a shame that it happens, because at the end of the day it's a job, but at the same time, I can understand why it happens.
What can we expect from the new record?
It's a melodic affair, with a fairly summery air to it. It's quite pop, but I think pop in a non-dirty sense of the word. There's quite a lot of heart in there.
You've worked with a lot of bands - do you class yourself as a session musician, or do you feel that you have a part in each band?
I wouldn't class myself as a session musician, I wouldn't be ashamed of calling myself a session musician, but I don't think I am, I haven't been in enough bands to be called that. I was in Razorlight for 5 years, and myself and Johnny wrote a lot of songs together, so I kind of overcame the session feeling that I had in the first year. And then We Are Scientists are mates - I dropped in to play drums for their album. So I suppose I'm a session musician for that album. And then my own thing! So maybe I'm my own session musician. But I don't think I am - I like doing my own thing.
If you hadn't've gone into music, what would you've gone into instead?
Job Centre! No, I don't know what I'd've done, I don't really have any other strings to my bow. I'm quite a keen cook, but I don't think I'm anywhere near good enough to cook for anyone who would pay!
Where would be your dream place to play a gig?
I really want to play a gig in a forest, so I guess maybe Latitude Festival? I mean, we played Secret Garden Party festival a couple of weeks ago, and I wouldn't say that was my favourite festival, with quite a weird stage, but it was very beautiful.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Best Coast, and my favourite record of the year has got to be Broken Bells.
How does it feel to be supporting Muse at Wembley Stadium next month?
Well we played the Stade de France with them in Paris, that was so much fun, literally one the best gigs I've ever done. And that's weird, because I'd never have thought that a gig off the drums would've been my favourite, but I really enjoyed it so much. So if it's anything like Paris, I literally can't wait for it. But yeah, I'm definitely a bit nervous, because it's ginormous. But at the same time, because it's so ridiculous, it makes it funny. So I can't actually wait, and all the band are really excited, so I think we're gonna have a great day - we'll probably have breakfast together, have a little glass of champagne, and then go and play, and then have a few more!
What's your favourite song on your album?
Probably 'The Battle For Hearts And Minds'
If you were to curate your own festival, who would your dream festival headliners be?
I'd love a bit of Broken Bells, and I'd love George Harrison to come back to join us on one final gig in this forest. I'd also love to see Queens of the Stone Age with Dave Grohl playing with them, so if they could get together and headline it, and I'd love for us to play too, maybe in the afternoon. And I'd love a bit of a guilty pleasure - Phil Collins to come and play at some time.
If push comes to shove, what's your all time favourite album?
I think it would either be 'Abbey Road' by The Beatles or 'Thriller' by Michael Jackson, so if I could put them both in my bag for a desert island, then I definitely would.
Do you still buy CDs, or do you just download stuff these days?
I would say, a little bit like my opinion on illegal downloads - I still like to buy CDs, because I like listening to whole albums, and if I have the CD, then I'm more inclined to do so. The one thing I love about CDs is the sleeve - I do totally get downloads, but what I hate about it is that you can't actually see it! When my record comes out on the week after next, I'm definitely excited about going into the shop and picking up a copy, much more so than I am about going onto iTunes on the Monday morning and seeing a picture of it on the screen.
I Am Arrows' debut album 'Sun Comes Up Again' comes out on August 16th, and they embark on a tour in September - click here for tickets!