WITH 37 years behind them you’d think The Stranglers would start to take things easier.
As they bring their latest UK tour to Sheffield’s O2 Academy tomorrow, along with Wilko Johnson in support, it seems not, writes Martin Hutchinson.
“Believe me,” says guitarist/vocalist Baz Warne, “this will be the most mixed set you’ve heard.
“We like to mix it up as much for ourselves as for the fans.
“There are some songs we have to play, as you have to cater for everyone, but we’re gonna play some even the band haven’t played before. There may be two or three new songs.”
Since forming in 1974, The Stranglers have had 24 top 40 hits with the likes of Peaches, Golden Brown and No More Heroes.
Most recent albums Norfolk Coast and Suite XIV have been widely lauded as among their best.
Originals bassist/vocalist JJ Burnel, keyboardist Dave Greenfield and drummer Jet Black, now in his 70s, were joined by Baz in 2000.
“It was a day I can’t forget. There’s been some tumultuous changes in my life but it’s been a great 11 years.
“I’ve made some fabulous friends and we really are like a family.”
He and JJ have been in Bath writing for the next album. “It’s all sounding alarmingly fresh and alive,” says Baz. “JJ and I tend to collect material.
“Sometimes we’ll use a Dictaphone or a mobile. Some will never be Stranglers material, but some will.
“Then we’ll get together and play each other the songs and deconstruct.
“As these songs are our legacy we work very hard to keep the standard up.
“This will be our 17th studio album and it will be ‘all killer, no filler’.”