Inspiral Carpets

The Inspirals - the band who don't say FCUK and who in the early 90s managed to cloth the whole of Manchester in their "Cool As F**K" T-Shirts. Always a band to do things differently, The Inspirals sung about feelings and natural emotions when the rest of Manchester was getting off it's head and now in 2003 they're set to unleash a video for new single "Come Back Tomorrow" which crossbreeds The Monkees with Yellow Submarine and features the band as animated animals. Designer Magazine caught up with Tom Hingley and Clint Boon and moo-ed at each other just for the hell of it.

Q: For the past few years you two have been off working on various solo records. How does it feel to be back under the umbrella of the Inspiral Carpets?
Clint: It feels f**king brilliant. It's feels as if we've never been away to be honest with yer. It feels like the last 9 years have just gone like that. And in terms of the way the bands are playing and the way were getting on it feels as if we've had a holiday, do yer know what I mean.

I don't think were surprised at the reaction we've been getting because we knew better than anybody else in the world that there was still a fanbase out there for us. But it doesn't make it any less exciting when you walk out on stage and you've got 2000 people moo-ing at yer. Even for the ballads there still jumping round like muppets.

Tom: It's very cinematic. Very much like that film "The Doors" with Val Kilmer walking out on stage and the anticipation of the crowd. It's not something that I ever thought would actually ever happen. I didn't think we would ever play on stage together again.

Q: We've got Squire back with the old Roses songs and then on the other end of the scale we've got the Mock Turtles. Good or bad timing for you guys?
Clint: I rather the kept out of it for a while and just f**king gave us our space because were doing it for the right reasons. We've got very passionate reasons for why were doing it and when we announced our get back together nobody else was planning to. It was nice to be part of Madchester and Shoegazing or whatever, but we were always inside our own little world so now there's a reformed Inspirals we don't want to be part of this resurgence of indie bands getting back together. And a lot of the bands getting back together, I don't even know why they're getting back together because none of them have got anything to celebrate.

Tom: We were very disenfranchised people from the scene that was going around at the time. A lot of the songs were very hedonistic and about getting off your head. So we did a song "This Is How It Feels" which is about actually feeling genuine emotions, not sticking your body full of shit so you can't feel anything. It's a very simple thing with the Inspiral Carpets - a very very good live band and just did very good 3 minute long pop songs that were very individual and didn't follow any pre-existent trend. We kind of set up our own trend and that doesn't happen very often. Too many people in the music industry try and follow trends, but you can't follow trends in the music industry because the music industry exists a year in advance - think of all the terrible Cher records that are being recorded right now in LA that were going to have to put us with next f**king year.

Q: Last time we spoke I remember you saying that the Inspirals wouldn't get back together until both you and Clint and had some degree of solo success. Do you feel you've achieved what you wanted to on your own?
Tom: I'm doing a lot of talking for Clint here, but the last interview Clint did when we were in Eastern Europe he said that he felt he wanted to go off and do stuff that was Clint Boon stuff and I had to do solo stuff and we are still doing stuff on our own.

Clint: I think any band that have been together for 10 or 15 years have got to have a break along the lines of what we did...I feel totally artistically, creatively satisfied that i've vented so much of my own creativity that I couldn't have vented in the Inspiral Carpets. The Inspiral Carpets isn't a cabaret band. The Clint Boon Experience to me was and it gave me the chance to be a bit of a knob head on stage and do things on record I couldn't have done with the Inspirals.

Q: Obviously the "Cool As" 3 Disc set encompassing DVD, Greatest Hits and rarities albums are serving as a retrospective to the younger audience. But what's on the release for the hard-core Inspirals fan?
Tom: There so much good music that's already going to be on this record that this is enough of job to make sure that people that weren't around at the time can get into it.

The singles CD has the first 2 single the band did with Steve Holt singing on them and they haven't been available for the past 15 years. It's got "Keep The Circle Around" and "Butterfly" from "Plane Crash And Train Surfing" and the b-sides are on the rarities those records change hands for £650 a time. It's a very collectable record and it's got lots of memorabilia in it such as Old Tour Passes and Models of Clint the fans made.

The DVD has 6 tracks off the G Mex video which don't have promo video's and then it's every single promo we ever did bar the first 2 singles.

Q: We haven't seen it yet, but from what we've heard about the video to "Come Back Tomorrow" is pretty tripped out. Fill us in?
Tom: The new animated video to "Come Back Tomorrow" which is really psychedelic and it's got animals playing the band...Clint's a Zebra I think, Grahams a crocodile, Martins an Ostrich and Craigs playing a drum kit made up of angry looking pigs.

Clint: It's a groundbreaking video as well because no-one else has done anything like it. No band has done anything like it. It's like a cross between the Monkees, Sergeant Pepper and Yellow Submarine.

"Cool As" is out on May 19th
The band play Move 2003, V Fest, T In The Park
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11th - 13th July @ Old Trafford Cricket Ground - Manchester
Manic Street Preachers / Charlatans / REM