“I played sax with Damon on some of his songs that he’d done. It was obvious he could write songs, he seemed to be a totally natural talent, but as far as I knew he hadn’t listened to that much music. He’d heard 2-Tone, The Jam and his mum played a lot of Dylan. So there was a lot of songs there, but I wasn’t really aware that he was a music fan. He was in his own world. We both got into Talk Talk’s Spirit Of Eden. That was the big album for us.”
Have you ever bought a record on the strength of the sleeve alone?
“I knew I had to get the first Clash album, probably on the strength of the cover art. I was really disappointed by it. I thought it was really lightweight so I tried to take it back, but they wouldn’t let me. I’m glad now.”
“I get embarrassed by what I play in my car, because you get stuck on Camden Parkway in a jam and you’ve got Borstal Breakout blasting out. People go, ‘Who’s that? Oh it’s Graham Coxon listening to Sham 69.’ But you can’t beat that sort of thing.”
“I’d moved to London and Damon was a tea-boy in a studio so we took advantage of that. It was a drum machine, Damon hammering a bass or piano and me on guitar. You could tell The Velvet Underground was an influence just from the drum machine, it was doing the Moe Tucker beat. Damon was going through a period of madness. He would stay up all night tinkling away on the piano and write some pretty insane stuff. That was when the seed of Blur started.”—
“Youth of America by The Wipers, but my joke one is I’m Your Man by Wham!. Youth of America is long, there’s lots of fiddly guitar, angry vocals, one beat all the way through. It’s cheap and nasty. My funeral music will either be contrary and horrible or something really pretty.”
“Faris: Josh makes makes origami birds and fucking scatters them around everywhere. Rhys: [The studio] was soon covered in a flock of origami cranes, which is the only thing that Josh can make out of paper and…