Me: Ok. So, you guys played Fest recently. Obviously. I was there. I only managed to catch you at the 1982 Pre Fest, I've no idea what I was doing when you actually played. I think I was staring at my feet in The Venue after Bangers. Sorry about that. Anyway, how was your reception from the American crowd? Or were there too many boozey brits to tell?
Ben: Every time we've played in America it's been slightly overwhelming. People like us more in America I guess. The Fest show was probably the best we've ever played... it was pretty overwhelming.
Me: How did the Brits Abroad split come about?
Ben: Basically, Bangers asked us if we wanted to do it and everyone was like 'hell yeah!'
Me: I've read some pretty rad reviews. I guess it's been pretty well received?
Ben: Yeah, um, I feel like it's all the other bands that have been well received, not us.
Tom: I'll be honest with you, I haven't read the reviews so I couldn't tell you... That's a terrible answer!
Ben: I'm very happy with the reviews. Thanks so much to everyone who reviewed it. That's why we do this-
Tom: Basically, if you can sum up this action (Tom gobbles off an imaginary horse)
Me: Ha. Um, Exeter is notorious for producing very attractive punk rock bands like Computers, Dead City Stereo, Brothers etc. Do you find yourselves taking more time over your appearance in order to live up to these sexy expectations?
Ben & Chris. Maybe Tom, too: NO.
Ben: You can quote me on this, I didn't know there was a sexpectation (looking very pleased with this word)
Chris: Tom is sexy NO MATTER WHAT.
Ben: You can quote me on this too, a sexy scene is built on a sexy venue. And we have one of those.
Me: I stopped very briefly in Exeter train station a few months ago on the way to Plymouth I think. Everyone looks exactly the same. Am I mental or amirite?
Ben: I think you're generalising... (someone says something. I can't remember what) I think this is a weird question.
Tom: Do you mean every train station looks the same or everyone in Exeter looks the same?
Me: Everyone in Exeter looks the same.
Tom: I thought you said everyone in Exeter was sexy!
Me: They are! ...But they all look the same.
Ben: Everyone doesn't look sexy in Exeter.
Tom: (aside) I'd rather Chris wasn't involved in this at all...
Me: You're on your third day of tour. Are there any places in particular you like to play?
Ben: Yeah. South Wales. Swansea!
Tom: Not my words! (Initially I wrote down that Chris said this but Tom corrected me. I think he wanted to make it clear that he's not into Swansea)
Ben: Anywhere where we get to see friends we never see.
Me: What have your best and worst shows been?
Ben: The best was our Fest show this year.
Me: The worst?
Tom: There's been a lot of them.
Ben: I would say the one time we played in Swindon and, uh, we set everything up, went to get some food, came back and the promoter said 'I wouldn't bother playing. Some people came... but they left. So you might as well not play'.
Me: What's the weirdest thing that's ever happened to you guys on tour? Like women, crusties, ghosts...
Tom: This is quite a good one. Last year in May we were going on tour with The Dead City Stereo and Chris was having lunch with his girlfriend, his CURRENT girlfriend, in Exeter in a café called Giraffe and a suicide bomber tried to blow up the cafe.
Ben: That, or anywhere in America.
Tom: And, if he had succeeded, Chris wouldn't be here right now.
(They all sing along to The Smiths: This Charming Man)
Me: So... I've run out of interesting questions.
Chris: Ask us a shit question!
Me: OK. Uhh... What's your favourite sandwich?
Tom: Cheese and onion!
Chris: How can you ask that? You can't just expect someone to answer that. Uhh... Swiss cheese and coleslaw.
Chris: I went there.
Ben: Um. Fuck! ...I had this really great BBQ sort of tofu sandwich from America.
Me: Oh! From the Reggae Shack?
Ben: Nah, from The Top.
Me: Oh. Hang on, where?
Ben: The Top. Opposite The Atlantic.
Me: Ohh. So... What does the future hold for the band?
Ben: We really, really, really don't... tend to plan that far in advance. But, if you must know, say, if anyone out there is waiting for us to release an album, it's never gonna happen. But we're doing a lengthy e.p. in January-
Tom: It won't be done in January!
Ben: Say next year. Then we're going on tour in June with a band called Hour of the Wolf (Ben had to write this down for me as I didn't have a clue what he was saying. He has lovely handwriting)
Me: I guess that's it. Worst interview ever?
Tom: Uh... (very long pause)... No. Not it's not, you smell nice so it's pretty enjoyable. That's a bad answer.
Me: I'm glad you think I smell nice because I feel very sweaty.
Tom: Worst interview was probably last year at Fest because it was a bit weird.
Ben: I said some terrible things and a lot of people saw it.