- Doug Johnstone
- 3 July 2008
Nice ‘n’ Sleazy, Glasgow, Tue 8 Jul
It must be tiring, constantly being referred to as unsung heroes. Who wouldn’t rather be a sung hero than an unsung one?
If Scottish outfit Stapleton feel any of that frustration they hide it well, but they’d be within their rights to be grumpy old bastards, given their career so far. The last decade has seen them influence a generation of post-rock outfits on both sides of the Atlantic, and yet they’ve been left on the commercial sidelines as other bands have built on what they’ve done and taken it to the masses. But they ain’t fussed.
‘There are always bands that don’t sell many records who seem to create a path a lot of other bands want to follow,’ says drummer and vocalist Gordon Farquhar. ‘I don’t think there’s ever been any desire on our part to think of ourselves as an influential band, but lots of bands have recently been referencing us. It’s quite a nice feeling, getting respect from other musicians.’
That respect looks set to continue with the band’s fourth long player, Rest and Be Thankful. It sees the band maturing, replacing some of the jagged rough edges of earlier recordings with a more sumptuous melodic content, not a million miles away from indie college darlings Death Cab for Cutie. The coherence of the record is remarkable, considering the members are scattered as far apart as New York and Glasgow these days.
‘This one was really carefree, we weren’t so analytical about it, which was great,’ says Farquar, and that unfussed attitude extends to every facet of the band’s life. ‘We’ve not really played that much, so we never really felt like we fitted in, especially to any Scottish music scene. We’ve always been on the outside of a lot of things, which is the best place to be.’