Arctic Monkeys‘ former bassist Andy Nicholson has opened up on his “soul-destroying” departure from the band.
The musician, who released a solo EP under his Goldteeth moniker earlier this year, formed the indie outfit back in 2002 alongside Alex Turner, Matt Helders, and Jamie Cook.
After taking a three-week break from touring commitments in 2006, Nicholson was permanently replaced by Nick O’Malley – who had initially joined the Monkeys on a temporary basis. Since then, he’s led a prolific life as a musician, DJ, record producer, and photographer – forming the band Mongrel, as well as briefly joining Reverend & The Makers, Lords of Flatbush and hip-hop collective Clubs & Spades, as well as producing for Toddla T, Swindle, Tom Prior and Terri Walker among others.
In a new interview on The Michael Anthony Show, Nicholson discussed the moment he was told he would not be returning to Arctic Monkeys.
“It was probably one of the few soul-destroying moments of my life,” he said on the podcast, which you can listen to in full below.
“I remember being in that room once they said [he’d been replaced] and I remember thinking, ‘Just try and be solid about this’. I remember I shook all three of their hands and said, ‘Good luck’. I still to this day don’t really know the full reason of what happened to me or why it happened.”
Nicholson went on to say that he contemplated suicide as the following three years led him down a “dark” path.
“I was very close to not being here, do you know what I mean?” he said. “And then managing to talk to people, and getting through it… time heals everything.”
Nicholson added: “I do remember watching them headline Glastonbury  on television, and I was just sat at home on my own… just watching it. Just crying watching them headline. Can you imagine what that’s like?”
Later, Nicholson explained that he’s now back on good terms with the band. “They were at my wedding and I speak to them as much as I can,” he said, adding that “time healed a lot of wounds”.
Speaking to NME about his current relationship with the band earlier this year, Nicholson said: “When they’re back in Sheffield we go out for some food or if I happen to be in the same country as them then we try to meet up when we can and text. It’s one of those things when you grow up; they’re busy doing their thing and I’m busy doing mine. It’s usually Christmases and birthdays when we exchange texts but we see each other when we can.”
For help and advice on mental health:
- ‘Am I depressed?‘ – Help and advice on mental health and what to do next
- Help Musicians UK – Around the clock mental health support and advice for musicians
- Music Support Org – Help and support for musicians struggling with alcoholism, addiction, or mental health issues
- YOUNG MINDS – The voice for young people’s health and wellbeing
- CALM – The Campaign Against Living Miserably for young men
- Time To Change – Let’s end mental health discrimination
- The Samaritans – Confidential support 24 hours a day