ALAN DONOHUE DOESN’T CARE MUCH ABOUT CHART SHIT!!!
Your new single ‘Strasbourg’ is released later this month. Are you interested in the singles charts? What are your views on the current singles situation (drop in sales, downloads etc)?
Yeah, I am (interested in the singles charts), as I think the other lads are too. It might be a very simple measure of success, but getting in the charts is a precursor to making your mum proud, which is why we make music… out of other reasons.
I don’t know how relevant the charts are, the fact that a lump of shit like “Words” by Natasha “the slug” Beddingfield can get to number one for a while makes me want to kill her and her family (we would like to suggest to our readers that this is not to be taken literally, ndr) and means that if The Rakes were to appeal to the same people’s tastes in music as those who bought her steaming pile of poo then I’d rather stay out of the chart than in it. If people whose taste we respected bought our stuff in droves and got us to the charts than that would good. I’m talking shit now sorry.
Also, I know our drummer downloads stuff, and I’ve got him to get me a Method Man tune I wanted that I couldn’t find in the shops. Never really thought about it too much – but now we’ve got our first single out and would assume that illegal downloads would harm our sales. ‘Strasbourg’ is something we’ve worked hard for, spent lots of time, money and effort on and for someone to scrimp on £3 and download it is annoying.. But then our drummer does it so I can’t talk. £3 or free, it’s pretty easy if you aren’t loaded to pick the latter.
Lyrics obviously play a big part in your music. Vocally you are very clear (people can actually understand what you are singing) so there’s no trouble getting your opinons heard. Can we see you taking the same sort of political stand as, say, U2 did in the early eighties (minus the mullet)?
I don’t think so. Yes we’re proud of our lyrics, erm.. I doubt we’re going to start going on about Amazonian squirrel farmers or anything. Not all our tunes might be described as political at all. Even a tune like “Strasbourg” isn’t really political, it’s more of a narrative, like a love story or summink (… something for the ladies..). It might mention, “..the freedom was a lie”, and “ideas can change the government…” and yes, that might seem political compared to something like “reading Shelly and Keats, put it on a hip. Hop. Beat”.. erm I’m talking shit again. Sorry.
Yes it is political, isn’t it – when you look at the lyrics… erm.. The End.
We’re all in a very politicised time now, it would be strange not to have something slightly political to come out with BUT I doubt we’re more ‘political’ than the next bloke down the pub.
Your live performances have been described as ‘homoerotic’, ‘sublime’ and ‘ridiculous’. Is that close to the truth? Your thoughts..?
What? Homoerotic.. now and again, if we get bored. We are all actually straight. Sublime – dunno wot that means.. Ridiculous.. yeah, probably. Wotever takes our fancy and wherever the music takes us on stage we act on – each show is different. A bit.
When can we expect the new album?
Probably the first quarter of next year.. I fink. Hopefully Paul Epworth has got an afternoon off in the next couple of years to squeeze us in.
What are your plans for the near future?
Might treat the girlfriend to a trip to Berlin or maybe visit my sister in New York. Bandwise: keep doing wot we’ve been doing as a band – write new tunes, play gigs, slag off Natasha Shit-in-a-field. And record an album. Saaaafe……