Sports Team say they’re aiming to get a second album “out quick”

Alex Rice tells NME the band have "been in the studio for the past three weeks, cracking on with album two"

Sports Team released their Mercury-nominated debut album ‘Deep Down Happy’ last month, and are already well on the way with its follow-up, they tell NME.

Talking in the wake of the debut’s Mercury Prize nod, frontman Alex Rice revealed that the band “have been in the studio for the past three weeks, cracking on with album two”.

“Hopefully we’re going to get it out quick,” he added. “No one is going to wait for us, so we have to finish it. I’m upstairs and I can hear everyone rehearsing. That last song sounded quite Weezer-y.”


Explaining the thought processes behind what will go into album two, Rice continued: “When things do go well for you, you do worry that something’s gone wrong or that you must have tricked people somehow.

“But to have stuff like the Mercury Prize nod, it’s got to the stage where we’re thinking ‘actually, maybe we’re quite good at this’. Now, you have more faith in yourself to speak about the things you want to and write the music in the way you want to. The pressure is hopefully coming off.”

CREDIT: Jamie MacMillan

Calling the second album “different,” Rice said: “The last [album] was born out of playing live shows. Rather than being recorded in a block, it was done with us coming back from tour on a ferry, going straight into the studio and trying to get a single out of it. Then we’d be straight back on tour. This one, it’s more about sound. It’s about changes of scene within a song as well. We’re looking at changing the mood in a big way.

He concluded: “It will still sound chaotic and it’ll still sound like Sports Team, but it’s going to be more experimental,” adding that the second album will give the band more space to “speak more explicitly and really say what we stand for”.


In a four-star review of ‘Deep Down Happy’, NME called the debut record “a flag in the ground from a band dedicated to extremes,” adding: “You can find Rice and his sidekick Rob Knaggs either charmingly or irritatingly gobby, and the joy lies in the tribalism that’s inherent to Sports Team’s approach.

“After a listen of ‘Deep Down Happy’, you’re left in absolutely no doubt as to what the six-piece stand against – what they stand for and actually do enjoy could be given a bit more airtime on album two, though – and this unabashed straightforwardness and refusal to bend makes them a unique prospect.”