I used to joke that that there's a second-hand shop outside the city that has a wall of Richard Oakes guitars; a giant wall of all of Suede's gear with discount tags. It's a depressing thing, isn't it, that it happened. It happened to us before in the States, on the first tour.
Well you always try to find silver linings for everything like that, and of course it's not my gear, but the one thing that did come out of it was a pretty intimate acoustic set at the Paradise. You went deep into the catalogue, played "May Dark Star" and tracks like that, which you weren't playing on theComing Up, tour, so it kinda gave Boston a different look. Well, exactly. I think sometimes you have to go with whatever hand fate deals you, and sometimes you can pull from the jaws of defeat. There's something exciting in doing something you haven't been prepared for.
Which is a good segue, in doing something people aren't prepared for: congratulations onBloodsports, this is a phenomenal record. Oh thank you!
The response has been huge, does it feel good to be back? It feels great, we're really proud of the record, we worked really hard on it. I think its sort of paid off and the response has been great, actually.
People are using terms like "triumphant comeback" and "return to form" and stuff like that . . . Yes, all of those clichés! [Laughs]
They look good in headlines. . . . Exactly, its nice that they're using that instead of something more derogatory [laughs]. But no, it's great. I think it's a fine record, I really do, and like I said we worked incredibly hard on it, and it really matters to us. It's very easy to get 20 years into it, and people can get complacent. And the times we've been complacent before, it's all fallen apart. I learned that lesson, and I'll never lose that hunger again I don't think. We're either 100 percent committed or we won't do it at all.
Was the break necessary to recharge the Suede engine? Oh god yeah. I don't think we could have made Bloodsports in 2004, or whatever; that would have been impossible, it needed to go away. I needed to make some solo records, I needed to learn a bit more about life rather than be caught in these . . . emotional pours, from the moment when you become successful. So yeah, absolutely, it definitely needed that space, and to come back to it with a little bit of hunger and passion, and come back to it almost like we realized what we nearly lost.
That's they key thing. You become quite complacent being in a band, and the success, you take it for granted, blah blah blah, and it just numbs you a bit after a while. We needed to go away and re-approach it.
There's a great comment on one of the "It Starts and Ends with You" music-video pages on YouTube, the one Pitchfork posted. It's the top comment, and it says: "Brett got his demon back." I thought, what a great way to sum it up. That is something I said, it's paraphrasing, when I split the band up in 2003. I kinda posted something on the Suede website, kinda apologizing to the people who were pissed off, but also explaining I needed to do anything it took to get my demon back. And that was the way I looked at it, I felt I lost my demon a little bit.