Banter: The Little Comets Interview

We had a feeling that Little Comets would be up for a laugh. Perhaps it’s their cheeky Mackam/Geordie charm or the twinkle in Mickey, Matt, Mark and Rob’s collective eyes. Whatever it was,  we knew that an interview with the boys who brought ‘Joanna’ into our lives (and ipods) would be a good’un! Just remember to never let Mickey near your tour bus…

Hello Little Comets! Thanks for agreeing to be grilled by This Town is Folly, we’ll be gentle with you I promise…

That’s ok. Thanks.

Is there a witty story behind how you all met?

Most bands do have a mint story for how they met. We might have too…. Erm either we are two brothers who met a couple of lads accidently and started a band or…. three of us were protesting against fox hunting and were chased down an alley by Mark (who was a riot policeman at the time). When we were cornered he reached into his pocket for handcuffs but instead an obscure David Bowie vinyl fell out and him and Matt bonded immediately. Then he quit his job on the spot and we drifted off together into the sunset.

What has the journey been like between your 2009 debut single ‘One Night in October’ and the release of your debut album ‘In Search of Elusive Little Comets’ earlier this year?

Haha, wow so…. that is an all encompassing question really. The truncated version is: we signed to a major record label purely for the money but our naivety quickly became apparent as we looked likely to lose all creative control (which is very important to us). Luckily we battled for the right to record our album and (accidently supported by Rich Costey), the label relented.

However, Columbia were as naïve as us (in not realising that we needed to have a lot of creative control over the project) and things continued to get worse due to a lack of reciprocity.

Finally (partially because they thought they would lose a lot more money) we were dropped and fortunately found a lovely little label (Dirty Hit) who wanted to release our record and so we did….

You’ve toured with the likes of The Twang and The Noisettes, and we happened to catch you at a gig in York a while back when you were supporting Frankie and the Heartstrings and Chapman Family. Who has been your favourite touring partner to date?

Deastro: a band from Detroit who split up the day before they came to the UK to play with us on the Hockey tour. However Randy the singer decided to come anyway and perform on his own with a laptop and a couple of pedals (what a hero). He had no other equipment, transport or accommodation so we adopted him for two weeks and he lived in our van, houses and Travelodge rooms. His craic was immense.

Who out of you gets up to the most mischief on tour? Have you got any cheeky tour stories to share – go on you can tell us!

Mark has smashed up his knee jumping into barriers, got a van stuck in the mud halfway between Glasgow and Carlisle, broken a finger onstage, shaved his head for no reason.

Matt’s climbing sometimes gets him into trouble although it is more useful than not.

Mickey has crashed the van into a school before and is generally a menace to clutch boxes everywhere.

Are you hoping to play any particular cities or festivals this year?

Berlin, Rome and Barcelona, Ljubljana and maybe Belgrade……..

Ok…here are our final five questions of folly:

1. The best thing we ever saw was… Robert Plant walking along the street carrying toilet rolls.

2. Our hair idol is… a hard question to answer as what is a hair idol?

(Silly Comets! A hair idol is someone who has a bad-ass barnet that should be admired far and wide. This Town is Folly’s hair idol is Garth from Waynes World.)

3. Two things we’d never do again are… watch Déjà vu starring Denzel Washington and play at the Dog and Parrot in Newcastle.

4. If we weren’t in a band we’d be… either modelling (Mark), turning the Albedo Effect into a force for good (Michael), rediscovering the pout (Matt) or working in a forest (Rob).

5. Any last words? Any tashing like?

(TTIF scratches head in confusion and heads of in search of a translator.)

Well there you go.  Little Comets make ace music, are a bit rock and roll, shouldn’t be allowed behind a wheel, are good at making funny and stalk Robert Plant. I’ll be darned, we like them even more now!

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