[B]Crispin Hunt[/B] talks about pulling themselves back together after years of addiction and exhaustion...

Longpigs return with a new single, 'Blue Skies', on September 27 through Mother Records. The band also embark on a UK tour in September with an album, 'Mobile Home', to follow on October 11.

The album is the follow-up to their 1996 debut, 'The Sun Is Often Out', which spawned four Top 40 singles. The dates are

Edinburgh Liquid Rooms (September 13) Sheffield Republic (14) London WC2 Talk Of London (15)

Talking exclusively to NME in his first interview in more than a year, singer Crispin Hunt said the band had pulled themselves back from exhaustion and addiction after touring constantly for three years including a year in the US.

"Then we stopped," Crispin said. "We were a bit fucked. We all loathed each other and had become addicted to all sorts of things. I won't talk about this because my dad's a politician (Labour MP Mark Fisher). It'd get really bad if I said I was addicted to drugs."

Crispin refused to be drawn further on the nature of his near downfall.

"All I'll say is it's messy in America and I was in bit of a mess but I pulled myself out of it. I'm fine now," he said.

He continued that the band took six months off on their return to the UK to sort themselves out and got back together to begin work on new material last autumn.

In March, the band took a finished album to their label but were told to go away and write a couple of hits as it was too "arty".

Crispin described their new material. "It's Busta Rhymes meets Jacques Brel, more like Massive Attack, but not just a Madchester thing with loops over everything," he explained. "I'm an arty fucker. Rock'n'roll bores me."

He added that the band would be avoiding conventional gigs and would instead be adding an element of cabaret and aspects of multi-media happenings. They're currently organising September dates in clubs, details to be confirmed nearer the time.

"Manic Street Preachers bore the fuck out of me," he continued. "They're just another band standing onstage. I mean, it's nearing the millennium, where's it going to go? I just can't stand doing another fucking boring gig."

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