never really been The Charlies way. New album Us & L's ()nlv sees them in eclectic mode. ‘I think it’s a bit moodier in some respects. all the songs are still there but it's a bit more diverse.‘ insists Collins. ‘There’s stuff from hip hop beats to waltz time songs to l‘ull-on rock. and we‘ve tried to marry them all together. 1 don’t think we‘ve ever been scared of being experimental — on the second album [Bern'va 10th And Ill/1|. we got the computers on the go for the ﬁrst time and we‘ve got them out again because we know how to use them a bit better now. We're not scared ol~ using teclmology. but we‘ve used it in a way that it sounds like it‘s a band playing it — and. no pun intended. we've really clicked on to something.‘
That 'something’ has also brought them largely unexpected success in further away climes. Last year saw them sell out The John Anson Ford Amphitheatre in Hollywood and Tim Burgess did a spot of DJing at LA‘s Viper Room. In Japan they have sold over 2()().()()() albums and last year headlined the Cool Camp Festival in Tokyo. playing in front of l().()()() people.
‘We felt like The Beatles over there.‘ recalls Collins. ‘We turned up in Japan and there were people waiting at the airport for us. and the hotel lobbies were just full of fans. Hotel lobbies in Japan are a bit like Barrowland on a Saturday night.‘
The Charlatans play Glasgow Barrowland on Thu 21 and Fri 22 Oct. The single 'Forever' is out on Mon 4 Oct. The album Us & Us Only is out on Mon 18 Oct.