Many moons ago I went to the Beached Festival in Scarborough to watch Scottish rockers The Fratellis.
Their latest single ‘Chelsea Dagger’ had just come out and was unavoidable in every indie night club.
Getting blisters from the sand in your white plimsolls was just as unavoidable, as the beach was packed.
On before The Fratellis was a support band I’d never heard of before called The Enemy.
Their performance had plenty of bollocks and it was everything I’d be waiting for in a band. It was loud, aggressive, with lyrics of youth frustration which I couldn’t help but latch onto.
After their four song set I ended up travelling around the country to pogo non stop for 30 minutes and lose three stone in sweat at their gigs, after downing 4 cans of Stella in the back of my mates car.
Their debut number one record “We’ll live and die in these towns” catapulted the band to the status of spokesmen for the working classes.
Countless festival appearances, headline shows, support slots with Oasis and the Manics and another four albums followed and there I was, upstairs in a closed ‘Gentlemans’ club, asking a band I’d admired since school whatever I wanted.
Tom Clarke, The Enemy’s front-man, had, a year before, publicly documented his battle with mental health and explained how the burden of thick-headed idiots on the internet, trolling him for no apparent reason, had lead him to quit Twitter (a way he said he liked to stay connected to fans).
We talked about how he felt “ambushed by the press”, his feelings about the recording of their latest album “It’s Automatic” and how it’s inevitable that he’ll be found “upside down in a ditch in his car one day” (his words!).
I started by asking the lads, do they still expect the same reaction from fans at gigs as they did when they first burst onto the scene…