Actually, we hate to break this to you, but Fucked Up couldn’t make it to this interview. There are plenty of amazing things going on in Toronto, but the band has been really busy promoting their new album, David Comes to Life, and couldn’t take the time to talk about their hometown.
Lucky for us, however, David, the subject of the album, did have a spare moment between shifts at his factory job to tell us about his hometown of Thatcherite, England. Read on and find some new hot spots and bands from the other side of the pond!
What’s your town’s nickname?
What’s your nickname for your town?
Why do you live there?
Born and raised and just can’t find the effort to leave. It’s kind of somewhere between the comforts of home and the comforts of madness you know.
Did you grow up there? If not, what brought you there?
Well I started here but my folks came here when the Well was still happening. Was supposed to be like another Bath or Leamington, somethin’ like that, and, you know, it all kind of went tits up dinnit? Was lovely for spell, though, I reck’n.
What’s the weirdest thing that has ever happened to you there?
As a lad, every time I switch the shower on the stove lights up, every time I light the stove the porch light turns on, when I turn the porch light on the toilet flushes, and when the toilet flushes the shower starts, but it runs brown and black for a few minutes before you can get under and get a wash.
What is your favorite local attraction (monument, park, etc)?
Byrdesdale Common. It’s the only green left ’round and something in the air feels a bit nicer there.
What is your favorite local event or festival?
Sunday Up Market at the Common, yeah. Just a good gathering. Music playing, wares exchanged, rain or shine, that sort of thing. Mostly rain anyway. Hard to find a unifying moment sometimes so that sort of sums it up for a few hours a week, donnit?
What is the best time of year to be there?
Any time when you’re about to leave for a spell haha.
Who is your favorite local celebrity?
Animal Man, without a doubt. Just a nutter. Iron Mouth, iron brawlies, crackin’ tunes, voice like an angel… a real pillar in the community anyway.
Where is the best place to drink and what’s their specialty or happy hour?
Strut and Banner, the best boozer in Byrdesdale. Their drink is the Sting Ray. Get it? It’s Bitter with a torpedo of lemon liqueur. When you first drop it in there’s something about the chemistry of it all that creates a bright ray of liquor’s light in the middle of your glass. If you finish before it fades you’re supposed to live forever.
Who has the best jukebox (and what’s in it)?
As above as it is below, fella. Mostly bits and bobs from the past… the best thing in there is an acetate, though. It’s a “field recording” of the entire boozer singing the BFC song in the pub the night they played their first game. Chilling, that.
Do you play music there? If so, where is your favorite place to play?
Can do, yeah, but mostly it happens in hallways and homes. Best place to play is the old rendering plant. There’s a slant in the ceiling that goes lower to higher from the stage out so it’s got an inverse amplified effect. If you’re at the front you’re perfect cause everyone on stage has to play a low volume. If you’re at the back, it’s screamin’ at just the right temperature. You’ll be clacking your feet to “Wonderer” at full volume, smiles and all. Nice, that.
Does where you live influence your music?
Surely it does. Not much else to do here, save working and sleeping. The man who learned to count to four in time is a saint in my books.
What is your favorite place to see live music and what was your favorite show there?
Strut and Banner, Grain, yer alright.
What is your favorite local band?
What is your favorite diner or restaurant and what is their best dish?
Debby’s Dish and the best thing on the menu is “Debby’s Dish.” Stew with cockles in a Yorkshire Pud.
What is your favorite record store and what was your best find there?
The Record Exchange. You don’t find much. Mostly local stuff, but occasionally there will be something. Found a Dr. Feelgood record there, and that lovely “England’s Glory” 45.
What is your favorite local publication (alternative weekly, zine, website or blog)?
Company News is the only source of info really for local affairs. You can get it ’round but it ain’t much but news about what’s happening down in Bulb land. I did read about them boys in France over at Rhodia. Feels like ancient history now though.
What is your favorite local shop?
If you could live anywhere else, where would that be?
Maybe Wigan or Blackpool. Seems like they might have life in ’em yet. Just like us ha.