Bryan Ferry Melody Maker Interview 1978 - Sat 16th Sep

Bryan Ferry Melody Maker Interview 1978
16 September 1978


BRYAN FERRY is sitting across the room from me, his features obscured by the late weekend shadows.
It is almost two years since we met last, at Air Studios during the final sessions for his last album, "In Your Mind." And, as our conversation chases the evening into darkness, and Ferry's mood becomes increasingly estranged from the optimism of that last encounter, I am, simultaneously, increasingly preoccupied with the thought of how much he has become, since the release of that record and his subsequent exile in Los Angeles, the victim of caricature and critical assassination.
"I've realised for a long time that I've been disliked," he said darkly when I mention his many recent detractors, "but it's only lately that I've realised that I might actually be hated. It's an unpleasant situation, but one I think I can accommodate. If people hate me, fuck them. I don't need them. I'm sufficiently convinced of my own talent to be able to live without them. I'm as good as anyone else currently working in the field of rock music and better than most, I think. If some people don't realise that then they must be pretty fucking stupid, frankly.
"There are so many utterly mediocre talents being acclaimed at the moment that I have no real fears for my reputation. I know how good I am. I'm the most severe critic of my work; no one is more critical of my work than I am myself. That's why I take so little notice of the so-called critics who are mostly ill informed and illiterate idiots. I know how good I am, and as long as I have faith in myself, I'll continue. And, as far as I'm concerned at the moment, everybody else can just go and fuck themselves."

The Moving Target
This is a critical time for Bryan Ferry. The architect of one of the most influential rock bands of the Seventies has lately become the target of nearly every disaffected critic with venom in his biro. He was always, perhaps, one of the most vulnerable of the rock elite; ridiculed often for his ambition, his intellectual aspirations, his mannered posturing, his affectations and conceits and his general flamboyance.
His talent, it has sometimes seemed, was almost disdainfully acknowledged and reluctantly recognised; many would prefer to concentrate upon his supposedly playboy image and his courting of sophisticated society. His success was frequently despised, simply because it was achieved with such irresistible momentum. Roxy Music refused to submit themselves to the gruelling graduation process to which most bands automatically surrender: suddenly they were with us, changing the face of popular music and enjoying the commercial adulation of the media and the rock audience.
The backlash was inevitable and not long delayed. For as long as Ferry's records were successful he was relatively invulnerable; but with the demise of Roxy two years ago, since when he has pursued a solo career, his commercial fortunes have gravely fluctuated. "In Your Mind" was successful in most areas of the rock market, but it barely made even a tentative impact in America, whose audience remained indifferent to Roxy at their peak and can hardly be said to have embraced with any wild enthusiasm Ferry's solo projects.
Furthermore, the failures of his last two British singles-"What Goes On" and "Sign of the Times"-have suggested that even his indigenous audience has deserted him. You can almost hear his critics baying in the wind, sharpening the hatchets for their appraisal of his new album, which is released this coming Friday.
"The Bride Stripped Bare" is reviewed elsewhere in this issue by Penny Valentine; I'll confine my views here to saying that I find the record, despite an initial antipathy and its own blatant failures, an emphatic success, reminiscent of Bowie's "Young Americans" in its desolate mood of personal reassessment. I suspect, too, that it will be equally maligned.
So, I think, does Bryan Ferry.

I Am Curious: Mellow
We are in the West London home of Simon Puxley, the former Roxy Music "media consultant" and, more recently, one of the co-producers of "The Bride Stripped Bare." Ferry and Puxley arrive from a photo session; the latter fusses about as Ferry settles himself down on the floor with a bottle of wine. The immediate conversation is casual. He remarks upon the changes he has noticed in Britain-he's been back for several months-and offers some observations upon his reactions to Los Angeles. He is clearly in good humour.
We begin by briefly discussing the world tour upon which he embarked after his last British concerts, and which immediately prefaced his sojourn in California. He is sensitive about reports that it was largely an unsuccessful venture, and contradicts them heartily, while admitting that America was not particularly overwhelmed by his presence.
"To be honest," he says, "I lost an absolute fortune on that tour. The gigs were mostly good, but there was a terrible problem with Atlantic who simply didn't support the tour, which provoked something of a scandal. They didn't think there was a suitable single from 'In Your Mind,' and therefore they decided not to support the tour. Which is strange I suppose, for a company that had such success with Led Zeppelin, say, who don't usually release singles. Atlantic actually wanted me to cancel the tour, which would have been even more disastrous: as it was I was disappointed, because that time I really wanted to put everything into being a success over there."
The conclusion of the tour found him, he says, in a pretty haggard condition. To recuperate, he went to Los Angeles, intending originally to spend two or three months there. "I was there actually for six months," he reflects, "it's very difficult to escape from LA for some people, it seems." Contrary to popular opinion, which had him constantly swanning about Bel Air at expensive parties, Ferry began working almost immediately upon the songs for "The Bride Stripped Bare."
"I'm by nature lazy, but I always force myself to real or imaginary deadlines. I'm always thinking about work. Often, yes, it's an invisible process. But more and more it's been revealed to me that people don't appreciate that. Whenever you aren't around, as it were, with a record or on a tour, people tend to think you're doing nothing. But it's not like that. I 'm always working, searching out the germ of an idea that will finally materialise and reach people on a plastic disc . . . I find that too exciting a proposition to ignore, you know."
Los Angeles, he says, was at first a strange and alien environment: he had friends there, but knew few of the members of the musical community. Interestingly, he remarks that he eventually struck a close friendship with Timothy Leary, whom he met through his friend Henry Edwards (a former rock journalist who was in Los Angeles working simultaneously on the screenplay of the Sgt. Pepper movie and a book about Leary). He remains resolutely ambiguous about Los Angeles' value as an environment conducive to writing and recording; the natural indolence of the atmosphere he found ultimately defeating.
You have to work hard, he says, to find any specific source of energy: "Also, I felt terribly alien there, and the atmosphere made me, if it's possible, even more introspective than I've felt before . . . I felt very distant from most of the people I met: being a part-time cynic, there weren' t too many people I was drawn to. Really, there are the most extraordinarily irresponsible people in Los Angeles. Especially, the movie people, with whom I seemed to spend most of my time . . .
"And another curious aspect of LA is that there are actually so few places to go, to meet people. It isn't a night-club place. There are only three or four places, and nobody really goes there. They're generally considered to be very tacky. And they are. I know, because I checked them out . . . So, you know, you tend to just go to parties. Somebody's always arranging something. A party down at Malibu or a garden party in Bel Air . . ."
And this rather attracted the hedonist in you?
"Oh, yes, inevitably," he laughs. "I was terribly intrigued by it. I always like to explore those situations. As a writer one always has this natural curiosity. That's why I always try to force myself into situations I might not otherwise find myself in, to explore aspects of different people. I try to impose no limits on any social experience. I can imagine no reason why I should."
He lived, while in Los Angeles, in the exclusive estate of Bel Air, where he rented a house-"it was considered tasteful by LA standards; a Spanish styled affair with a pink tiled roof. Leslie Caron used to live there. All the houses have that kind of pedigree, of course. It was really quite remote. You could go for days without seeing anyone apart from the odd Mexican gardener."
I wondered whether the sheer affluence of that specific environment became, eventually, oppressive. It did, he says, once the novelty of living in such a status symbol area became tarnished: "But I'm not pretending I didn't enjoy it. I'm not that much of a hypocrite. And I did find the isolation very useful, you know. And I was really fascinated by Los Angeles. I think most Europeans are amazed by it. It is the landscape of movies, you keep getting all these strange flashbacks . . . But, you know, it's not really the kind of place I could live in forever. After six months I began to miss the greyness of Europe. I missed the contrast of climate and mood."
He is unable to isolate the specific affects of Los Angeles upon his writing, although he did compose one song, "Can't Let Go," a particularly tortured piece from "The Bride Stripped Bare," which he describes as his "meisterwerk about L.A. It's an album about Los Angeles condensed into one song . . . Yes, it is violently ambiguous . . . I did often feel violent there, because it's so placid. It made me feel more like the Geordie rebel that I really think I am." The smile that follows this last remark immediate deflates its sardonic pomposity, and indicates that Ferry has said his last word on Los Angeles.
I mention that I had read that he was under some considerable pressure to establish himself finally in that country. He smiles grimly and acknowledges the truth of the report. His management, and his American record company, Atlantic, he says, were most insistent that he record "an American album."
He even had several meetings with Richard Perry, he recalls, but he remained adamant that he would not be sucked into that particular syndrome.
"It was something," he continues, "that I didn't want to do. I never have wanted to make somebody else's album. Those guys are just too strong. It might, on the other hand, have been interesting to see what might have happened if I'd actually come up against one of them. Because I'm not going to be dominated by anybody and those people tend to make their own albums. I played tennis with Richard Perry. He's a very good tennis player. But I'd never let him produce one of my albums. I can't actually think of anyone I'd ask to produce one of my records. I'd probably be the most difficult person for any producer to work with. Because I do have a clear idea of what I want and I also want my records to sound like nobody else's."
His album was eventually recorded in Montreux (and re-recorded, in part, in New York with Simon Puxley), with an Anglo-American cast of musicians, including Linda Ronstadt's guitarist, Waddy Wachtel, to whom he had been introduced at a Jackson Browne session. His selection as lead guitarist was, I ventured, quite untypical. "I agree," Ferry replies quickly, "that sort of laidback L.A. music isn't at all my style, but I can spot a good guitarist very easily. And the idea of Waddy playing with Neil Hubbard, I thought was very exciting."
The production of the album, he intimates, was an intense and emotional experience: its pervasive mood of melancholia being especially enhanced by the remote atmosphere of Montreux and its out-of-season desolation. "The only thing to do there was to make music. There were no distractions. It turned out to be the strangest album I've ever done . . . There was such a crazed atmosphere in Montreux. There was this band of musicians just stuck there. Like an Everest expedition of something. A real Men Without Women number," he smiles. "We just moved out there and dug in. I'm really searching for the words to describe it. It was possibly the most soulful musical experience I've ever been through. It was very remote and very lonely and very crazed."
The Montreux sessions provided, he adds, enough recorded material for a double album, and it was during the selection of the final tracks to be included that he began to nurse some lingering doubts about some aspects of the project.
"After the album was finished," he explains, "I became unsure about it. I wondered, for instance, whether we'd put the right tracks on it. And when I finally came back to England I became more certain that I had to make some changes. Obviously, I wanted the album out six months ago. But, really, it just meant so much to me that I couldn't face putting it out not feeling happy with it. Now I feel that it's right. It was worth the delay. I really wanted this album to stand out, you know. I think it does . . . Of course, as always, it means that it isn't a good background music album. My records never are. And that's something the listener has to contend with. In America they do like albums to be background music; that seems to be the formula for success.
"That's not what I'm interested in. Especially, at this time, with this album. I wanted it to be extracts, if you like, of various styles and moods. And to get into the kind of art-conceit of the title (which is taken from a work by the painter Marcel Duchamp), the original Bride Stripped Bare was full of strange elements adding up to one thing, one statement. To me, that' s what this album is. It has an Irish folk song, some early kind of Memphis things and an Al Green song and a Lou Reed song-I've always wanted to do a Lou Reed song. I like playing about with other people's songs. And, I hear, he was very pleased with this version."

All About Bryan
"The Bride Stripped Bare" is, Ferry makes clear, perhaps the most important and personal album he has yet recorded.
"It's a very, very emotional album," he stresses, as the shadows crowd around him. "It's rare that I'm actually moved while we're recording, but this felt like the real thing. It seems strange to sit here talking about it, so long after the event. One is in danger of almost waxing sentimental about it. But just to see these guys virtually crying through their instruments was extraordinary. It's not something I've experienced before. It's what music is really all about."
I admit to some surprise at his abundant confidence in the album: it had been suggested by some of his more scornful detractors-"an ever growing club," he adds-that the delay in the record's appearance might be attributed to his own lack of conviction in its worth.
He is aghast at the notion. "It's absolutely untrue. God, no . . . I've been dying for it to come out. I wish it could have come out the week I came back to England. I just didn't want to put my name to anything that I wasn't sure about. That's why I changed it. Now, I'm sure about it. I don't have to defend it. I would never put out anything that I wasn't convinced about. Sure, this is a commercial art, but I'd never just put something out because pressure was being asserted on me . . . No, I couldn't do it . . .
"You know, this is such a funny business. It creates all kinds of predicaments. You make an album because you have to: because you feel that impulse . . . But at the same time, you want people to like it and to buy it, so that you become rich through it. But you can't let those factors overwhelm you. You have to squash them . . . you have to concentrate on the work, and believe in it, you know. And sometimes it's depressing, because there are certain records that you do which you feel totally right about, but they don't get through to people. They don't like them, or for some reason they simply don't want to involve themselves in the record. I feel in a sense that perhaps some people don't want to be involved with my career.
"It probably seems to a lot of people that I've been away for too long. They aren't to know that I've been working on this album. They probably feel that I've deserted them. They probably feel I've been off on somebody's yacht."
Ferry offers this last remark with a kind of quiet bitterness, provoked by the way in which his public image has become-as far as he is concerned-so distorted. And the pursuit of further opinions about his current gossip-column status, which reached a peak with his estrangement from Jerry Hall (who left him for Mick Jagger), seems to encourage a mood of depression and infuriation.
"I'm tired of it," he says wearily. "People are forever going on about this gossip column coverage. It's not as if I have teams of PR people rushing about trying to get me into the gossip columns.
"You can't have your lifestyle limited or totally imposed on you by your audience. If some people in my audience were offended or put off me because I was being written about in gossip columns then they should have realised that it wasn't something I particularly wanted. I mean, I tried to resist it . . ."
But surely there is an aspect of his ego that enjoys being written about by sophisticated fashion rags?
"Well," he begins patiently," I've always been involved in a small way with that world, just through the people I know. On the creative side of that world, I've always been drawn to creative people. And there are other creative people than musicians. And so I have friends in that particular world, and I will go to their parties. And I might get written about . . . I don't see why there should be a kind of penalty clause. I can't honestly see why it should be seen to be any worse than going to a football match and being written about for going to that . . . Anyway, if you ever saw me at that kind of party you'd notice that I'm always hiding from the bloody photographers, not posing for them."
But doesn't he ever feel pleased by the fact that his name is being circulated alongside other supposedly ritzy types?
"I certainly never sat back thinking how wonderful I must be for being accepted by café society. Perhaps at first, I'm not sure. Because at first I was putting myself about. I was trying to reach as wide an audience as possible. And not everybody reads the music papers. So at first, when you're trying to build up your career, you tend to be quite pleased when you're written about in any paper. Be it Motor Racing Weekly or House & Garden. You 're trying to extend yourself, and your market."
You must have been, I suspect, somehow titillated by that kind of attention, though? You didn't exactly shy away fiercely from such exposure.
"You're right, I didn't. And perhaps it was a juvenile response, in a way. It certainly works against me now. And I think that's unfair. I think there are other people who do get mentioned in the same context who do actually solicit it, you know. I'm not going to mention their names, but you know who they are. And all I'm saying is that I was always fairly reluctant to appear in those things . . . I mean, look, I know Nigel Dempster. If I see him at a party I talk to him. But I don't invite him around to my place so that he'll write about me in his column. I just enjoy talking to him if I meet him. I'd rather talk to him than some kind of boring trade union official . . . But is any of this really relevant to the music?"
I think it's relevant in that reactions to your public image inform the attitudes toward the music, especially since there's been such a reaction against the kind of rock star image you epitomised.
"I can see that. In that sense it is probably very relevant to the commercial failure of my recent singles. That the last single, particularly, didn't do well was very disappointing. I thought it was a very relevant record. It was about what's happening now. The very title indicated that. It was always the track I wanted released as a single especially in Europe. I thought it was an important record. Melody Maker disagreed, I remember and tore it apart. And it was praised to the hilt in NME . . . I thought actually that the Melody Maker review was based on a personal reaction to my image, you know. I didn't think that the music had actually been listened to at all . . ."
Ferry is silent for a moment, considering the implications of the criticisms of "Sign of the Times" made in this paper by Chris Brazier.
"It was very strange," he eventually states. "He seemed obsessed by my playboy image, you know. Perhaps it had got out of hand . . . But it was weird being criticised for having an image when the whole Roxy thing had been about playing with images, which is exactly why a lot of people were attracted to the band.
"It seemed strange, too, that I should suddenly be deemed so unfashionable by the new wave when the new wave itself was inspired a lot by Roxy Music. And to think now that people aren't buying my records because of my image is extraordinary for me.
"Basically, I don't regret anything I've ever done. I know there are certain things I've done which are the very antithesis of the new wave-at least on the surface. Things like 'Smoke Gets in Your Eyes' are probably anathema to the new wave. Some of them would probably like to see me crucified for that. But there are other things I did with Roxy, like 'Street Life,' that are probably more new wave than the new wave, you know. Or at least archetypal songs or new wave themes. And that's why I find it strange to think that there are people out there now, who're into the new wave, say, who can't identify with what I'm doing now. Probably because they may be unaware of Roxy and just think of me as some kind of playboy who occasionally makes records."
I wondered, then, whether he regrets contriving such an image and thinks, in retrospect, that it was a mistake to flirt so incautiously with fashion.
He had never actually contrived a specific image, he insisted; he had been merely reflecting the versatile styles of the music he was writing and Roxy were playing. Rock music, he felt, was always so one-dimensional. He was determined to disrupt its placid surface. "And obviously, if national papers and magazines see somebody coming out of a rock group who isn't a total stereotype, then they're going to write about him. Especially if he's going around with glamorous girls or he's seen in unusual situations.
"And, you see, for me an interesting life is being placed in these unusual, interesting situations. I've never confined myself to any limited situations. I'm a social explorer. But to be castigated for that by the people I feel closest to is really hurtful. It must make you more withdrawn, more sensitive to criticism. It's the price you have to pay. I realise that the more celebrated you become the more notorious you become, then the more difficult it is for somebody like me to circulate. I can do it in New York because nobody knows who I am. I'm not John Travolta. But here there are limits. The only outlets tend to be uptown places. Café society places, if you like, and if you're seen there you're accused of betraying your audience, being a playboy. God, sometimes I just like a night out. Where am I supposed to go? Down the pub?
"You see, I started off life with nothing. Just a state education, you know. Nothing special so there really is nowhere for me to go except upwards. Socially, anyway. But that doesn't mean you lose touch or that you become a terrible snob. I do like to study people. And some of the most intriguing people move in that kind of society. But that doesn't mean they' re alien or that there isn't something to be learned from them. I hate it therefore that some people should try to prevent me from exploring that aspect of society by refusing to buy my records."
Still, he has been forced to accept the fact that in some ways he has become a figure against which the new wave has rebelled as much as they did with the senile manoeuvres of the supergroups.
"I accept it as a commercial handicap now. But I'm not ashamed of the way in which I behaved, or anything I've ever done. But some people have always resented [me?]. They resent the fact that I'm successful. They resent the fact that I like nice suits. They resent the fact that I obviously know what I'm doing. It's a pathetic kind of jealousy, really. They're just the people who will resent me, whatever I do."

Night of the Living Dead
Bryan Ferry describes his new album as, essentially, "connoisseur's music." And he doesn't even blush when he uses the term: his critics, I tell him, will blast the phrase back in his face.
"That will be very sad," he says dryly. "But honestly, I think it's true. That's what I tell myself. I think there are very few people about who will like or appreciate it. There are very few connoisseurs about. So I might as well forget about treble platinum sales, and just concentrate upon the music. Just get on with it. This happens all the time, of course. There's been a lot of great work that's been done that hasn't been a popular success. Standards, often, aren't terribly high: the commonplace is often accepted too easily . . .
"But there's a whole area of music that people are afraid to get into. Music like mine, I suppose: emotionally demanding music that often has a small but devoted audience. And I sometimes think that I'm now going to have to be content with that kind of audience. It'll grow occasionally for short periods when I do something like "Let's Stick Together,' which was just a fun record. But it's not really the kind of thing I'd like to be remembered for. I'm capable of more subtle things than that. But of course subtlety doesn't sell a million records. It's the obvious that sells, not the subtle . . . and there are people who are simply not going to give this album the light of day simply because they think it's been made by the perfectly awful playboy character who doesn't care any more about music or life or anything. . . .
"Like that review of 'Sign of the Times' in Melody Maker that we were talking about. I read that bloody review and it's all about this guy who supposedly spent £395 a night on a hotel room, and consequently has nothing to say to humanity. What am I supposed to say to a charge like that? To think that Melody Maker has somebody like that writing for them . . . and this is a paper I used to, like, deliver, used to buy every week . . . to think they have someone with insufficient brains, who believes I'm dumb enough to pay £395 a night on a hotel room. He doesn't deserve to write the ads at the bloody back. You know: 'Guitarist wanted. Hair, Image, No Time-wasters.' He doesn't deserve to be doing that or even driving the paper around to the bloody newsagents. What am I supposed to think about things like that. What kind of dumb people are they employing to write the paper . . . God, you try living for three months in a fucking hotel room, man, working on a new album, trying to improve upon the last record and the record before that . . . and you're digging within yourself to try to do something to turn yourself and everybody else on.
"It sounds dreadfully like the old art-is-suffering number, I know. But there's an incredible pressure on you. My whole shirt was on the album. I don't need some ridiculous cub reporter criticising me for how much-and it was a hell of a lot less than that-I was paying to stay in a fucking hotel. He didn't write about the record. He wrote about me. And he even got that wrong. You can't get away with saying that I have nothing to say to humanity, man. That's just too heavy a thing to say about anybody."
This sudden tirade, though it is not delivered at any hysterical pitch, seems to emphasise the extent to which Ferry has been bruised by his experiences over the last two years. It's an experience, furthermore, which he has truthfully reflected on "The Bride Stripped Bare," an album of occasionally painful self-doubt and self-examination: moods which Ferry now seems to be introducing to the interview, too.
"I'm always easily discouraged," he offers. "I have tremendous drive on one hand, tremendous motivation. But I really need enthusiasm from other people to help me bring it out. When I'm making records, if I don't have somebody around me who's really enthusiastic, I'll be the first to get depressed. And I'll be convinced that everything I've done is terrible, and I'll want to stop and give it all up. But I can't, you know . . . And this is what happened to me when I was in LA. I went through a very bad personal patch. I was wondering why exactly, I was doing anything . . . I'm by nature a very moody person, and that was a mood I went through for a long time. It didn't seem as if there was any support for my work. Which is something I've always needed."
He repeats that criticism from the press might hurt him personally, especially where it is ill informed or simply malicious, but he is more deeply concerned by the apparent indifference-as he defines it-of the public to his most recent music. Almost obsessively, he returns to "Sign of the Times," stressing once more the injury he felt when it was ignored.
"The disappointment hasn't really sunk in," he says somberly, "But I was terribly sad when it didn't take off. But all this has to be placed in perspective. It's hardly a full-scale disaster to have a couple of flops. We'll see how the album goes before we start writing the obituaries. Maybe the album's doomed. I don't think it is; even though I'm aware that these last singles have done worse than anything else I've ever done. I'm especially disappointed, artistically, that there's been so little response. Money in this case doesn't matter. It's the fact that nobody seemed to want them. I'm not utterly despondent. I haven't slashed my wrists yet. It hasn't reached that stage.
"It seems that because I seem to have been away for so long people have ceased to identify with my work. I can only hope that the album will attract back those people who may have felt less interested in the singles. I know, you see, that I had a very strong affinity with the Roxy audience. I think that the affinity probably still exists. I don't feel as if I've lost my touch or anything. I still think I can really touch people through my music. I still think I retain a talent to capture and convey the mood of the times, in the manner which, I think, Roxy did."

For a Few Dollars More
These references to Roxy inevitably provoke the expected inquisition about the recently announced reformation of the band. Ferry is reluctant to elaborate upon the original news story carried by the press. They would have preferred, he says, to have maintained a level of privacy about their rehearsals which he claims have been so far very informal: "We're finding out, really, what exactly we have to say to each other musically. I can't be more specific."
I suggest to him that the reunion will be seen by many as a purely mercenary venture, and will be taken by some as further evidence of his comparative failure as a solo artist.
"It would sadden me to think that," he says. "I think Roxy can still contribute something valid musically. If we were re-forming just for the money we'd have gone about it differently. But it's too early really to talk about our plans in any detail at the moment . . . We're just working toward making another Roxy album. I always thought we would. Roxy never really ended. And if there are some people, as you suggest, who think we should not record together again, well, all I can say is that I'm not going to be dictated to by those people. I think the prospect of us working together is really intriguing. And so far we're all pleased."
But won't the reunion, whatever the musical results, be overshadowed by the suspicion that you've just reformed Roxy to reassert your own popularity.
"People will say that, I suppose. But those people simply aren't to be considered. They aren't really interested in my work. They're just interested in criticising me. I can't let them worry me, otherwise I'd probably never do anything again, you know. I won't be intimidated. I try to stretch myself all the time. I'm still full of ideas. I'm always driven to do new things. Therefore, there might be some people who won't be able to take this new album. It's by far the most personal and emotional album I've done. Some people will find it uncomfortable to listen to, I'm sure. Maybe people don't even want to hear this kind of stuff. I'm fucked if I know.
"I haven't prepared an answer to the possibility. Jesus, it's not something I really think about. If it is a failure, come back to me and I'll give you an answer. I'll still be here. Nobody's getting rid of me that easily. I think I've made that clear enough. I think I have to be credited with a little more determination. And I think that's as much as I can say at the moment. We'll just have to see what happens. And leave it at that."

By Allan Jones
Melody Maker, 16th September 1978

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