The Charlatans' new approach

The Charlatans took a "completely different approach" to writing and recording without their late drummer Jon Brookes

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Tim Burgess

Tim Burgess

The Charlatans took a "completely different approach" to working without Jon Brookes.

The 'One to Another' group - who were left devastated after the drummer passed away from a brain tumour last year - found it "cathartic" recording new material but didn't worry about getting a replacement for their late bandmate until they needed to.

Frontman Tim Burgess said: "I suppose it felt a little bit different making it, but we just kind of made it with lots of optimism.

"It was a completely different approach. We wrote the songs without drums. We wrote them with drums in mind, and then decided who we would like to play the drums after. "

His bandmate Martin Blunt added: "We started in January and finished in June and as the process went along with the songs, it was quite cathartic for the rest of us. We've probably done our most optimistic second record."

One track on the album, which is entitled 'Modern Nature' and will be released in January 2015, was partly written by John and they hope its inclusion is a "fitting tribute" to their friend.

Martin told BANG Showbiz: "Before Jon suddenly passed away, he began to write some lyrics for a song he had in mind. He'd started to demo it with a friend of his, and we managed to unravel that. It's like an extra track on one of the CDs.

"He wrote them in hospital. Pretty heavy, but, it's not the end."

Tim added: "We just did our best and did it very slowly, a fitting tribute I think."

However, the singer admitted he found it tough to sing Jon's words so opted just to take backing vocals.

Asked if he found it hard to sing the song, he said: "You know what, it was, so I didn't. Jon had this song in mind and he presented it to the band, in a written demo form, with some kids singing it, some students from a music college. It just sounded so great that I only did backing vocals. They were pretty tough to sing."

The Charlatans

The ever-durable Charlies have weathered all kinds of upheaval over the years and but have managed to plod along happily with considerable fan support.

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