Dodgy performed on Saturday the 11th of June to a packed out crowd at none other than the Isle of Wight’s own Kashmir Cafe at the Isle of Wight Festival 2016. The tent was heaving with the audience stretching about 5m outside then Kashmir too! We were honoured to have the opportunity to interview them after their set…
You made your name known in the 90’s, how would you say the music has changed from then to now?
Nigel Clark – It’s totally different, there’s like a massive difference, it’s just a big difference I don’t really know how it’s just different.
Mathew Priest – I think the internet has changed it, I mean it’s such a cliche but the internets changed everything you know. Also music I don’t think is as culturally important as it used to be. I hate to sound like my Dad but when I was growing up it was like, when you got pocket money you’d go out and you’d buy an album. That’s what you did, there was nothing else to spend money on! But now young kids don’t necessarily go out and buy albums, and so it’s not as culturally important. There’s more buzz about the new video games! God I really do sound like my Dad! Shit! You know there’s more of a buzz about call of duty than even the next Jay Z album or whatever! It’s not as important but when we first got started music was important.
Andy Miller – In a sense.
Mathew – OH!
Nigel – Here we go…
Mathew – If he says ‘In a sense’ shit’s going to go down!
Andy – In a sense, it hasn’t changed at all, it’s just if you’re shit you’re shit. And if you’re good, you’re good. Anyway that’s me.
Mathew – But also, you don’t earn money in the traditional sense. Bands out there build a following on youtube and then they’ll sell merchandise and gigs, and make a living that way. But they’ll never get a sniff at radio or press or whatever, there’s loads of different ways of making a living now. We only know the traditional way, get on radio, get on press and do that kind of stuff. We’re doing it again.
With a new album you’ve got coming out in September..? What can we expect from your new album?
Nigel – Songs, melodic songs um with harmonies. That have been perfectly crafted. Crafted songs, something you’ll really enjoy. We really enjoy playing them and it’s like, each album I suppose since we got back together in 2008 the last two albums we’ve just sort of got into it again. And it’s a great feeling so long may it continue! But in this day and age you have to work at it alot and we do alot of gigs, we meet alot of people, so I think the album will do ok really in itself, we’re looking forward to people hearing it.
Mathew – There’s so many bands getting back together it’s incredible. I think the pixies broke the seal.
Nigel – The seal?
Mathew – You know! Like when you’re drinking loads on a night and you don’t go to the loo and you’ve had like 3 or 4 pints and then that first piss breaks the seal and then you’re pissing all night! So I think the pixies broke the seal in the sense that they made it ‘cool’ or ‘OK’ to re-form. And everyone’s done it, and see some of the albums of some of these bands that have got back together are shonking.
Stu Thoy – Name names!
Mathew – What? Really no!
Mathew – Some of them are friends! Some of the are friends, and I won’t do it but umm there just shonky and you think ‘Oh no!’ and if you’re a fan of that band you’re just going to think, ‘Well I really liked their early stuff but their new stuff is crap’ and with us it was never about that, it’s like hang on this new stuff has got to be as good or better than the stuff we did in the 90’s and if it’s not as good or better then don’t fucking release it. I’ve got to be able to go that album we’ve just released. I’m happy for that to be our statement for dodgy. I don’t want it to be like ‘Mathew died but his best album was Free Peace Sweet’
(Which you will)
Mathew – I will die, and you know who’s fault that is! You know who reminded me of that… Grant Sharkey reminded me of that!! He reminded me I’m going to die! I was happy thinking I wasn’t going to die and GRANT SHARKEY reminded me I was going to die. It’s the idea that you don’t want people to go ‘Yeah, Mathew he was really good and he was in a band called dodgy there best stuff was in the 90’s let’s disregard all the rest’ you want them to go ‘They continually produced amazing stuff and their last album was probably their best album’ You know what I mean? We took four years over it! It better be good!
So you’ve played on the Isle of Wight a few times now, at scooter rally, the garlic festival, Bestival last year.
Mathew – And we did Cowes week, which was a bit upsetting because we thought it would all be about Cows.
Ah yeah, it’s about boats, not quite the same is it?
Nigel – It’s about rich people! Rich people in weird clothes.
How did today compare to your past experiences here?
Nigel – This has been for me, personally, just around this tent actually it’s been the heart of the festival for me. I got here yesterday and it’s just been a mecca for me. Playing here was great, the vibes great and everyone’s really lovely, it’s seems like the heart of the festival, the real part of the festival. People from the Island, and they’re all really lovely peoples and everyone’s doing things for free. It’s what it’s about you know? There’s a spirit here.
What have you enjoyed most about your festival so far?
Nigel – I saw a band in here called Polar Maps last night and I thought they were really great, I really liked them. Just a 3 piece all really good. And I saw a band called The Shimmer Band on one of the other stages and they were really good. One looked like harry styles though, great drummer in the band. It’s all about the drummers at festivals.
Mathew – How good was he?
Nigel – Really good actually.
Mathew – But like how good?
Nigel – Really good! I think he had orange headphones on though, which was a bit disconcerting. Then I saw faithless and that was really good fun, for a bit, then I had to run away. Literally, and then I came back here again, and I watched the last band here.
Nigel – Yeah and so I’ve had a really great time! I’m going to go watch The Dammend in a bit.
Who are you looking forward to watching the most?
Nigel – The Dammend, yeah definately The Dammend.
Mathew – I’m going to go see The Who with my son, coz he’s never seen The Who. I saw The Who in 99, 6 days after my son was born. They still had John Entwistle in the band and it was at Sheperds Bush Empire. If it’s as good as that, then we’re laughing.
Everytime I’ve seen them recently they’ve been amazing.
Mathew – Well it’s The Who, The Who are my faivourite band in the world.
So your song Good Enough is probably your best known song, but what exactly is ‘it’ that’s good enough?
Nigel – I think, well, you know what, when I wrote this song my wife was pregnant with my son Marley so in 1995 I think I wrote it. And it’s just one of those sort of humanist things. You want your son to live in a world that’s caring and like, you know, it’s just very simple I mean there’s no simpler message than that song. I feel really proud, also it was an accident how it came about in a way.
Mathew – What Marley?
Nigel – No well, that was an accident but, so 2 accidents! And then the song because it was me messing around with loops and all that. I started messing around with loops and I had a sampler, and the way it came about I was looking for the loop on the keyboard but I had GM sounds like the GM drum sounds and I went ‘chi chi chi buf b-te’ and I found the loop but I went ‘chi chi chi’ just to find it and I went ‘I like that!’ So I put the ‘bom bom bom bom p-te’ in, it just sort of became that that’s what it was around, that’s what the song’s about it’s just really simple. It’s like George Harrison, Karen Carpenter positivities you know what I mean. I like it, it’s just one of those songs, and Bob Marley, they were the 3 main people, my inspirations behind it.
Any advice you’d like to give for new bands starting out?
Nigel – The things is it’s like, I like to come to festivals and watch young bands. And I saw Polar Maps last night, the singer was great he was a guitarist as well, the bass player was really cool, and the drummer was really cool and it’s like you don’t need anything more, and he was a great songwriter and so just keep going because they were a really good band! I got them, I understood them, I got them straight away and went ‘That’s good’ so just be real, be honest.
Mathew – I’m actually going to change my stick, because normally I say don’t do it, be a scientist or an engineer instead, we need engineers and scientists in the world.
Nigel – That’s boring.
Mathew – We don’t need musicians, but I’ve changed my stick now. Don’t think you’re going to make riches, if you’re doing it for the right reasons as in you love being in a band and you love making music, you love creating just find a new way of doing it.
Nigel – Always be asking questions, I think being in a band and writing songs is always about asking questions of yourself, but it’s also about asking questions of the audience.
Andy – Make sure you get along with fans, and each other.
Mathew – ‘In a sense’
Andy- Yeah, in a sense, always have somewhere to go away from the band!