So, tell us about the new album…
We’re made up. The last album re-established us in people’s minds and everyone was really into it. And this is a progression from there, maybe slightly more grown up. There’s a ska influence in there, Sheffield electro – which was obviously a big thing in the past in Sheffield – and a bit of that lyrical sarcasm that Jarvis (Cocker) made so popular.
There’s a myth that people make their best music when they first start out, but I think we’re getting better with every album. We’re very happy, gigs are going well and people are into it so it’s a good time. In terms of tracks, everyone seems to be really into The Devil’s Radio, Different Trains and I Spy, which are the ska-y ones. Someone called it ‘skindie’ to me today – indie crossed with ska.
Why is it called Thirty Two?
Well, I just wanted to stick it to Adele because obviously she’s got nowt to come when she gets to 32. We’ve trumped her haven’t we. It’s also my dad’s lucky number on the lottery and my age. It’s that thing about being more honest about how old you are, where you come from and why would you pretend to be anything you’re not? You spend so much time in a band trying to please the likes of Radio 1 and NME and then after a bit you’re like “You know what? I’m quite comfortable in my own skin.”
Are all the band members football fans?
Yeah, we’re all Sheffield Wednesday fans apart from the drummer, Ryan, who’s a Rotherham fan. But we won’t hold that against him. We don’t mind Rotherham, although they did beat us this season, which p*ssed me off a bit. I went to Rotherham’s ground and they gave us a bit of a beating which was a blow.
We’re all big Wednesdayites so we were all gutted the other night when we got pasted in the cup by Charlton. We were hoping for a quarter-final against United. We had one day off this month and it happened to be when the cup replay was on so we went, but the team just didn’t turn up. We’ll take Championship football over a cup run though. It’s more important to start trying to build a team that could get us in the Premier League at some point. We’re doing alright at the minute. Stuart Gray’s come in and brought a bit of stability to the club. He’s played a lot of young players who can actually play football – Chris Maguire, Kieran Lee – the Championship Iniesta – and Liam Palmer. So it’s exciting times. All we’re missing is a decent striker. We just need uncle Milan to put his hands in his pockets.
What do you think of the Wednesday fans who play for the England band?
They do my f**king nut in. They’ve got two trumpeters and one of them plays the harmony. And I’m like “Come on mate, it’s a football match. Who sings f**king harmonies at a football match?” But in the same way, you have to say good luck to them because they blag their way to all these massive matches just by banging a drum or blowing a horn.
Would you like to have a go?
If it gets me a free trip to the World Cup I’ll be more than happy. I’ll play anything you want.
How do you think England are going to get on?
We’ll probably get tonked. The heat’s going to be telling in Manaus, isn’t it? You look a people like Jagielka and you think “How are you going to play over 70 minutes in the Amazon?” I worry about us at centre-half. I don’t feel we’re strong enough there. I’m not trying to be rude about Jagielka because a lot of my family are Everton fans, but I don’t think he’s good enough. As much as I hate John Terry, he’s our best centre-half and it’s ridiculous he’s not playing.
Is that Jagielka opinion based on him being an ex-Sheffield United player?
No, no. It’s not just because he played for the Blades. I just think he’s slow on the turn. When Suarez gets him on the run, he’s just going to be a bit leggy. It’s not only that, it’s when you get outside of him and Cahill – people like Lescott – we’re just not good enough at centre-half.
What I’d like us to do at the World Cup is have a go. When we played those last two qualifiers with fast wingers and had a go it was half-decent. But then there’s this other side of England where they just look to nullify teams because we think they’re better than us. Like we did against Ukraine. If we play like that I’ll be p*ssed off.
England to win it, then?
The one thing I think England do have on their side is that the expectation levels are lower. But you know what will happen – we’ll get through the group stage and everyone will start saying “We’re going to win the World Cup.” But we’re not though, are we?
Do you get any rival fans giving you stick at gigs?
I get stick all the time on Twitter. You get people saying “I f**king hate Reverend And The Makers” just because we’re Wednesdayites. That’s not a f**king reason not to like my band, is it? To be honest, most Blades are pretty sound. There’s always one or two idiots who take it too seriously. I’m not into all that though. If Wednesday won the Premier League, I’d be happy for Blades to finish second.
Are you saying you want them to win the FA Cup then?
I wouldn’t go that far.
For more info on Reverend And The Makers’ new album Thirty Two, click here.