ASH – IT’S ALL GOING SWIMMINGLY!

NME.COM visits the Irish popsters onset and gets the full story behind what is sure to become a video classic...

ASH’s video for forthcoming single ‘SHINING LIGHT’ will be an underwater spectacular based on deep sea epics such as ‘THE ABYSS’, NME.COM can exclusively reveal.

Speaking yesterday (November 21) on-set in north London, frontman Tim Wheeler explained how in the promo for the four-piece’s first full single release in almost two years, he will be seen swimming ever-upwards towards the titular shining light.

“The whole thing was roughly based on a ‘Big Blue’ or ‘…Abyss’ kind of vibe, those underwater movies,” he explained. “I think the whole thing is going to look really striking with me swimming up to this bright light. It’s been beautifully filmed by the guy Mike Valentine, who did lots of ‘Star Wars’ stuff, lots of Bond stuff. He’s the world’s top underwater cameraman. It’s going to be good.”

The remaining three members, drummer Rick McMurray, bassist Mark Hamilton and guitarist Charlotte Hatherley, appear at the end of the video standing around Tim’s hospital bed, revealing that it had all been a near-death experience.

The single, set for release on January 29 2001 through Infectious, is the first to lifted from the band’s as yet untitled, soon to be completed third album.

“I think its a very logical progression for Ash,” he said. “It’s very melodic, it’s got great, big guitars.”

Acknowledging a partial debt to Teenage Fanclub on the track he said: “They’re a great melodic band, I’ve always listened to lots of them. But I think it sounds very much Ash.”

Ash are also about to embark on a full UK tour, the venues of which were chosen by readers of NME.COM. Kicking off in Kingston Upon-Thames on November 23, the band will roadtest new material in venues throughout the UK not usually visited by touring bands, before rounding up for a hometown show in Belfast on December 21.

“There’s three reasons why we need to do this tour,” said Wheeler. “First, we need to do this sort of tour for ourselves to get back out there and play new songs in an intimate setting. Then, there’s a hardcore of fans who haven’t really seen us play. We’ve haven’t toured the UK for two years. They need to see us, get some contact going. And it gets boring when you just play the same cities on tour. Whenever you play these places out in the sticks, like when bands play Belfast, you always get a great reaction.

“Its a real interesting list – they’re all cool venues, just places no-one really plays.”

You can see the full video interview with Tim Wheeler, and world exclusive clips from the promo, soon on NME.COM.