The band's frontman talks exclusively to NME.COM about 'Phantom Power' and some amazing live action...
SUPER FURRY ANIMALS have confirmed their new album will be titled ‘PHANTOM POWER’.
The band’s sixth album, released on July 14 through Epic, will be preceded by a single, ‘Golden Retriever’, on June 30.
The LP, as with 2001’s Mercury Prize-nominated ‘Rings Around The World’, will be released simultaneously on conventional audio and DVD, and mixed in 5.1 stereo surround sound.
The album opens with a sample taken from country duo Delaney & Bonnie’s 1971 album ‘Genesis’ .The record also contains guitarist Huw ‘Bunf’ Bunford’s first lead vocal contribution to an album with ‘Sex, War And Robots’.
Talking exclusively to NME.COM, frontman Gruff Rhys said of the single, the Bowie-esque stomper ”Golden Retriever’, “It’s about a dog/bitch.
“It was fun releasing a plastic soul record in the middle of a garage rock revival last time (2001’s Top 15 hit ‘Juxtapozed With U’). This is different, but it’s still got a Furry sound. There’s never gonna be a song that represents the whole album, but we talked about it and agreed on this one.”
On ‘Liberty Belle’, which contains a reference to September 11, Rhys commented: “The American people deserve better than what they’ve got. The band love America. The diversity of the place is incredible. We always get a huge welcome.
“But the song’s not specifically about the US. It’s saying that responsibility lies with everyone in the world. There’s no point blaming Americans for everything. People are the same everywhere. It’s saying we have to learn from our mistakes.”
When asked about the significance of the album title, he commented: “All will be revealed on the DVD!”
The tracklisting is as follows:
‘Sex, War And Robots’
‘The Piccolo Snare’
‘Venus And Serena’
‘Father Father #1’
‘Out Of Control’
‘City Scape Sky Baby’
‘Father Father #2’
The contents for the ‘Phantom Power’ DVD are currently being authored with long time artwork Pete Fowler and Cardiff-based collective NoBrake at the helm.
The group will make their first live appearance of 2003 when the world premiere of ‘Golden Retriever’ will take place on the pitch at the Cardiff Millennium Stadium, prior to the crucial 72,000 sold-out European Championship qualifying football match between Wales and Azerbaijan. This is followed by the already-announced show on April 19 at London’s Royal Festival Hall, as part of the Stephen Malkmus-curated ‘Down The Dustpipe’ festival.
Rhys said: “We’re big fans of Stephen Malkmus. I think that night we’re going to concentrate on the more acoustic side of the band.”
Tickets, which cost between £17.50 and £22.50, can be bought by calling 020 7960 4242 or [url=]clicking here.
The band’s first major show of the year, however, takes place in Bethesda, Gwynedd, north Wales, on June 21. The concert, subject to license, will occur in a 5,000 capacity tent, to commemorate the centenary of the end of the Great Bethesda Quarry Strike, which took place from 1900-03 and became Britain’s longest ever strike. The all-day event – for which the full line-up will be announced shortly – is part of a yearlong commemorative festival in Bethesda. For tickets, which cost £20, call 02920 230130.
The band are also strongly rumoured to be playing the Glastonbury Festival on June 27.
For more from Gruff on the album and live shows, see next week’s issue of NME, on sale nationwide on 26 March.