Bobby Gillespie

Word of mouth

Word of mouth

Primal Scream’s Bobby Gillespie has always professed to be the thinking woman’s muso so when it came to having one of the stars of Connect cast a beady one over the line-up, it seemed too good an opportunity to miss. Here he spouts forth down the phone on the genii kicking out the jams at Inveraray. Malcolm Jack takes his call

Fire Engines
‘I’m a big Fire Engines Fan. They were a big influence on us: fifteen minute sets, very intense. ‘Get Up and Use Me’ – their single. ‘Candy Skin’, ‘Meat Whiplash’, ‘Sympathetic Anaesthetic’, you know? Big fan of the Fire Engines basically. I saw them when I was really young and they were just incredible. They were my favourite band at one point. I haven’t caught them since they got back together, but Andrew Innes who plays guitar in Primal Scream did and he said they were fantastic.’

The Jesus and Mary Chain
‘Good for the Reid brothers, you know? I’m happy for them. I went to see them a few weeks ago at the Royal Festival Hall and they were great. Great show, I loved it. Jim and William are completely special. Super-talented. They’ve got so many great songs. Jim’s a fantastic singer, William’s a fantastic guitarist and they’re both great songwriters. What more do you want in a band? They’ve got a great back catalogue of fantastic songs. Most people find it hard to write even half a great song.’

Big Star
‘Again, I’m a big fan, you know? Alex Chilton, he’s one of my heroes. I dunno if ‘hero’ is a bad word to use, but everybody in Primal Scream is a big fan of Big Star – particularly Alex Chilton. About maybe six, seven years ago, they played a gig in London and it was fantastic. We’re gonnae miss him unfortunately, but, you know, for anybody who’s around – he’s well worth seeing. I guess sometimes Alex Chilton can be quite contrary some folk reckon but I’m a fan.’

Super Furry Animals
‘They’re a good band. Gruff Rhys? Aye, definitely. He’s got a lot to say. He’s always going to do well for himself. He’s got a vision, and he’s an interesting man, and he’s a good man and he makes interesting music. It’d be good to see them. Are they on the same day as us? No? That’s a shame, I’d like to see them.’

The Only Ones
‘Listen, right, The Only Ones. That’s the band I’m looking most forward to seeing. I worship The Only Ones. I saw them play in London about three weeks ago, and they were incredible. Just totally fuckin’ mind-blowing. Peter Perrett is a fuckin’ god; he’s got one of the best voices I’ve ever heard in my life. Just beautiful. Even Serpents Shine is an amazing album. I think it’s a masterpiece. I think Pete Perrett only ever writes great songs. And, as I say, a beautiful voice. Great lyrics. I’m a fan, as you can guess, so I’m looking forward to them. They’re playing the same day as us, so that’s an honour to be on the same bill as The Only Ones, you know? Totally incredible, just like . . . space music, you know?’

Echo and The Bunnymen
‘Oh, I love Echo and the Bunnymen. Hold on, we’re talking about all the older bands. What about some of the younger bands?’

‘Yeah, CSS. I’ve seen them a couple of times, they’re fuckin’ great. Again, I saw them at the Astoria. They were fuckin’ fantastic. I love their album. They’re a cool band; they’re exciting. Great live, great to look at, great songs. Yet again, what more do you want? Happy – just fantastic. They’re one of the best bands around right now, I love them.’

The Polyphonic Spree
‘Eh, hippies. It’s like Godspell or something, innit? Like a weird religious cult or somethin’. No for me. It’s a no-go man. You know? Like Charles Manson, that kind of thing. Well, you know what I mean. I don’t even know if they’re hippies, it’s just like Jesus Christ Superstar or something. Och, I dunno. I don’t really want to slag anybody, it’s not my thing. Have I got to go through the whole fuckin’ festival? It’s a bit boring. I don’t really have the time. I’ve got to get back to writing my record . . .’

‘Oh she’s amazing. Live, Björk is fuckin’ incredible. She’s like a warrior queen or something, a fuckin’ pagan warrior queen. She’s fuckin’ amazing, honestly, she’s fuckin’ great. She’s a fantastic live performer. She’s just amazing, so there you have it. Yeah, don’t miss Björk.’

Primal Scream
‘Aye, they’re pretty good. We’re working on a new record now, it’s fuckin’ great. Yep, our new album, it should be out next year. It fuckin’ sounds amazing. What can ye expect? I’m not gonnae tell you. It’ll be different from what we’ve done before though. Hopefully. We’re all very excited about it. Very very excited. We’re all confident it’s going to be a good record.’
‘Oh, yeah. It sounds a bit fuckin’ cheesy but we’re really looking forward to playing back in Scotland. They’re the best audiences in the world. It sounds a bit patronising but it’s the best reception we get anywhere in the world. That could be because we’re from Scotland, and I don’t really go in for nationalism – never have, never will. I hate it. But the atmosphere, the response from the audiences in Scotland, it’s kind of like . . . special. You walk on and it’s like scoring the winning goal in the World Cup final. Yeah, looking forward to it. I’ve got to go, alright? Cheers . . .’

Oyster Stage, Saturday


Returning for a second year after its successful debut the boutique festival has corralled headliners Kasabian, Manic Street Preachers, Bloc Party, Paolo Nutini, Grinderman, Franz Ferdinand, Sigur Ros and Goldfrapp. There will be five stages: 'The Oyster stage', 'Guitars and other Machines', 'Manicured Noise', 'Unknown…

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