Tuesday, 26 July 2011
Indietracks interview #28: The Sweet Nothings
The festival is sooo close now, and to ramp up the dizziness even further we thought we'd interview the most excited band we could find! The Sweet Nothings play indiepop songs that are sparkly, catchy and unfashionably sincere. Songs about love, trains, football, happiness, sadness, trains, opting out, and winning. And trains. They're a Sheffield band made up of Pete Green (singing and guitar), Vinnie Ransome (keyboard and more singing), Dan Hartley (bass) and Tim Boyd (drums). Their first single is released this summer in time for Indietracks: a double a-side comprising 'She's an Accountant' and 'Subterranean Moseley Blues'.
Hi, tell us a little bit about yourselves
Hello Indietracks! Veterans of the 2009 festival may remember our appearance in the church, in our previous incarnation as The Pete Green Corporate Juggernaut. We remember it as possibly the best moment of our entire lives so far. The train whistles still haunt our dreams.
Who are we? We're four people in Sheffield giving it all we can, because the alternative of a life without pop and this passion is too unbearable to contemplate. Welcome aboard the 16:45 Sweet Nothings service to Happiness Central, calling at Wistful-on-Sea, Idealism Junction, Revolution Parkway and Leamington Spa. A trolley service will be providing a selection of train songs, protest songs and last-gasp love songs.
Has anything changed since 2009? We're still full of pop and sparkle and catchy tunes and mild desperation. And we're still obsessed with trains. But this time around we're a bit more kick-ass, a bit more political, a bit more having a GIRL and a Microkorg, and hopefully a bit less going to break a guitar string during our first song.
Do you have any exciting plans for the rest of the year?
HELL YES! In fact we are having an Indietracks Tour Of Awesomeness to coincide with the release of our first single. And it is so insanely exciting that we've barely slept for the past three months. Though part of that might be tinnitus from Tim's drumming.
The Sweet Nothings were born for life on the road. Living for a week off chips, toast and Subway. Arguing over which voice on the hire car satnav sounds the sexiest. Treating the life-threatening ailments of our notoriously sickly keyboard player and bassist with Buttercup Syrup and Strepsils. Trying to get back to the promoter's house after the gig in time for the Shipping Forecast. We love it all.
The single is She's an Accountant/Subterranean Moseley Blues and it came out on Precordial Catch Records on 25 July. We confidently expect it to obliterate the entire system of global capital and sell about 162 copies.
Most of the tour is also the Math and Physics Club/Very Truly Yours tour, which makes it even more exciting. Ethan from MAPC saw us a few months ago supporting Eux Autres (who he was guesting with) and very generously invited us along. Pocketbooks are playing on those dates too. Pocketbooks would never be anything less than thrilling if we watched them every day of the rest of our lives. Not that we're stalking you or anything, Pocketbooks. But we do know what time you all left the house this morning.
The tour takes in Birmingham (Saturday 23 July), Manchester (Tuesday 26), London (Wednesday 27), Nottingham (Thursday 28) and Sheffield (Monday 1 August). Oh, and Indietracks. There's more about it on our website if anyone fancies a look. After all that we'll probably spend the rest of 2011 in bed to recover.
Do any band members have any particular skills, hobbies or claims to fame you wish to share?
Vinnie speaks four languages. Tim can carry four pints of beer at the same time. Pete makes the best vegetarian fried breakfast in Sheffield. Dan is an amazing DJ and runs a brilliant night called Pop-o-Matic – they're on at the campsite disco on the Sunday of Indietracks. If you've ever wondered how it feels to dance to Jamelia right after The Aislers Set, you should get along.
What attracted you to play the Indietracks festival?
Oh, we were just passing, you know. No, wait – we were just wanting to be part of the whole reason pop music exists in the first place. Part of a world where music is made for love and anger alone, and your first D chord on fresh strings never stops shimmering, and rockstar sexist bullshit can't reach and the pluggers can't plug and Brandon Flowers followed plan A and became a golfer instead, and James Blunt never even existed, and the corporate sponsors don't put banners up at festivals because nobody even sees them, and the X Factor means the love at a tipsy singalong on a dusty railway platform in the middle of the restless striving night.
And when all that noise is cleaned off the track, we can hear the pop music again. It's fresh and beautiful and it's as pure as a sine wave. It's the singing on 'Heart of Glass' and the guitar on 'The Red Door' and the organ on 'Hey Hey Girl' and the drums on 'Be My Baby'. And the 1-2-3-4 on the first Ramones song you think of. And all these years it's been waiting for us to come back.
Thanks for having us – we'll see you in Butterley. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!