Three Lions hasn't won too many friends for THE LIGHTNING SEEDS north of the border, but it has won over people in unexpected quarters elsewhere. Words: Peter Ross
They think it’s all over. It is now. A dramatic last minute turnaround and a classic performance from the defence has brought about a final result no one dared believe possible. In the village pub. fighting to get round the telly. the crowd are on their feet. And they’re singing a song. Its the only song they could be singing; a song of victory. a song of hope rewarded. a song of dreams come true: ‘She’s coming home. she’s coming home. Louise is coming home’.
In another part of England. lan Broudie. frontman with The Lightning Seeds. sits gobsmacked in front of his TV. watching the punters in Elton — Louise Woodward’s home — react to the verdict re‘versal. He watches them sing Three Lions. his song. the song that he wrote about his passion for football. the song that has now been used to celebrate everything frotn New Labour to Woodward getting sprung from chokey. He’s created a monster.
‘When they cut to that pub and everyone was singing. l was flabbergasted.’ says Broudie. ‘1 just went “Oh. my God”. It’s very weird. but that song is universally adaptable.
‘ln a subtle sense. Three Lions is a bit of a millstone. but in other ways it was really good doing
’ln a subtle sense, Three Lions is a bit of a millstone. but in other ways it: was reaiiy good doing it and we had a iaug’n. But we don’t piety it live regularly.‘ tan Broudie
Lightning Seeds do it like you do
it and we had a laugh. But we don’t play it live regularly; it’s like singing ‘Happy Birthday’ — you’ve got to have the right vibe or mood. The other thing is that I don’t want one song to overshadow everything else we do. i mean. I love Three Lions. but we’ve got loads of other songs that arejust as good.’
This last comment is the understatement of the millennium. Saying lan Broudie has written some good tunes is like saying some people bought flowers when Princess Di carked it. The Lightning Seeds have created some of the catchiest songs ever. Broudie has come up with melodies that the likes of Cast would burn their Beatle wigs for. and to prove it. they’ve just released a greatest hits album. Like You [)0 which is crammed with more pop than an lrn Bru factory. Still. Broudie remains incredibly modest.
‘Putting out the greatest hits is only the end of the beginning.‘ he says. ’l feel we’re only just starting to get the hang of it. It’s weird, but it really feels like a new start. because the others in the group are going to be writing now. We’re going to be very inquisitive and do a lot of jamming late at night. a lot of mucking around. and taking the most interesting elements as the core of the next album.
‘When people listen to the greatest hits. it’s like us growing up in public. When The Lightning Seeds started. it was just me. and I only made the ﬁrst two albums (Cloudcuckoo/and and Sense) as a hobby. It was only on the third LP. Jolliﬁcarion. that I decided to do it properly and start playing live. But I didn’t want to get session players. I wanted to get people who I liked and who were into the group. heart and soul. It took a long time for that to happen. but now it has and we’re ready to start properly.‘
Shouldn’t be too hard a trial.
The Lightning Seeds play Barrowland, Sun 25 Nov.
I can say what I want. I’m a rock star; mate.
‘Are we still REM? I guess a three- legged dog is still a dog. It just has to learn to run differently.’
Michael Stipe on the end of REM as we know it following the departure of drummer Bill Berry.
‘You know those sailors in myths and legends who would strap themselves to the mast in a storm, just to see what it was like? That’s us. Just out there, fucking finding out how it feels.’
The Verve’s Richard Ashcroft confuses being in an immensely popular band and suffering genuine hardship. A common occurrence among successful bands.
‘Alan McGee, right? It was Meg's birthday, she's having this party and McGee turns up with a box. So she opens this box, and it's a load of fucking see-through lace underwear. I go, "McGee, can I have a word, right? What are you doing buying my bird see-through underwear? What are you, a ginger-haired Scottish person who owns my record company, buying my bird girlie underwear for?“ Noel Gallagher has a word in the shell- /ike of his boss.
'I don't know what an alcoholic is. How d'you define it? You either have a drink or you don't. A little bit of drink won’t hurt anybody. What are you living for if not to enjoy yourself?’
Shane MacGowan looks back on nearly 40 years of enjoying himself with an enthusiasm seldom matched. 'Making music is a pain in the arse. We’ve both been carpenters and are aware that making a table is much more satisfying.’
Bill Drummond, one half of 2K, The KLF, The K Foundation and the Justified Ancients Of Fuck Knows What, reveals why he has taken to running around dressed as an old gipper with a horn taped to his head rather than thinking up tunes.
(a, - 1‘
21 Nov—4 Dec 1997 THE llST45