The Sunshine Underground (or TSU to their fans) burst onto the scene in 2005 with their single ‘Put You in Your Place’ and won a legion of followers with their full on grooves and electric live shows. They’ve been away for a couple of years but are due to burst back over the coming weeks with a headline slot at Stockton Calling followed by an intimate acoustic gig in Sunderland. Gigslutz caught up with front man Craig Wellington to find out the craic and what’s coming up…
GS: Hello mate, how are ya?
CW: All good mate, cheers, how are you?
GS: Not bad, it’s Friday so looking forward to getting on it. No one is arsed about me though, tell me a bit more about this acoustic show, it’s not something I’m aware of you doing before. Is a one off or is this something you will be looking to do more regular?
CW: Yeah, we haven’t really done the acoustic stuff very often before but we were in the area for Stockton Calling so thought we’d get another gig in and seemed like a good opportunity to do something different. It’ll be kind of cool to do something different. We’re used to the energetic stuff so this will be a nice change. We’re really looking forward it.
GS: As you say, it’s the day after Stockton Calling so I’m presuming a nice sit down and strum of an acoustic guitar might be just what the doctor orders….?
CW: I reckon so! It’s been a long time since we’ve been on the road so Stockton should be a good one. We’ve got a good time, I think we’re on a 10 and the rest of the line up is cool so really looking forward to that one.
GS: You realise it will be a bank holiday weekend in Sunderland may not be the perfect time for a nice laid back acoustic session though?!
CW: Haha! Yeah – bring it on man!
GS: You’re quite dance orientated, how does that come across in the acoustic stuff?
CW: Yeah it’s different but it’s cool. We don’t have to hide behind the stuff on stage and we can strip it all back. Completely different. In a good way.
GS: So what will your tour bus be like? Give me 5 words to describe that….
CW: Oh! Messy… Erm, I’m not very good at this. I’ll go 5 five times!
GS: What has been happening since the second album? You’ve been off the radar a bit.
CW: We’ve been writing the third album for a long time now. We didn’t want to take as long we have but the recording should be done soon. We will have some new stuff ready to come out in the spring / summer. It’s been 3 years since our last single so we will put a single out. The album won’t be out straight away but there should defiantly be a single. It’s about time! Something will definitely be out…
GS: Cool, is there any change in direction? You’ve been getting into the DJing a fair bit and heard you’re going down a more electronic route….
CW: Yeah we’re going massively down that avenue. We’ve moved away from producers and have been doing it ourselves at home. Everything can be done on laptops these days so we’ve had them out and getting stuck in ourselves. We’re still sounding like a band though if you know what I mean. The drums and bass are all there. It’s still us but there’s a definite progression.
GS: What’s your opinion on the state of music at the minute?
CW: Oh the Brits were awful. It’s the worst they’ve been in years. At least a couple of years ago there was still people like Amy Winehouse making appearances but there was just absolutely nothing to be excited about. But I think indie music is as healthy as it’s ever been. There are no big labels taking a chance on bands, they are all just going for safe options which is a shame as it means the best bands aren’t going to get a proper shot but there is some ace stuff out there. 6 music is the saviour really. When they saved it from shutting down it had a bit of a rebirth and it’s became crucial.
GS: You’ve done some pretty big tours and played with some pretty big bands – can you divulge to us one proper rock n roll tale? The Mondays for example must have had some pretty funny incidents….?
CW: Oh I really don’t know! I’m not too good at this either. Most of our tours have passed me by in a drunken haze! Every now and again I get flash backs about them. I’m sure there have been many along the way but I can’t remember any at the minute.
GS: Yeah ok. I believe you. So what in your opinion is the greatest album of all time?
CW: That’s a tough one isn’t it. I’ll go with an obvious choice and say Kid A.
GS: I wouldn’t say that’s too obvious at all! It’s not even their best album! Ok, so what in line next for TSU?
CW: Getting back on the road over the summer and doing the live stuff festivals and all that. Get the single out soon and album by the end of the year hopefully.
GS: Happy days, good luck with it all, see you in Sunderland.
CW: Nice one mate, cheers!