It’s been a long time between drinks since Australia has been graced by the presence of The Charlatans. The last we saw of the English four-piece was back in 2010. A lot has happened since then, most notably the tragic passing of long time drummer Jon Brookes who succumbed to brain cancer in 2010. His band mates have forged on since then, his recordings appearing on their 12th album Modern Nature released in 2015.
After a storied career, The Charlatans are making their long awaited return to Aussie shores. Ahead of the shows, we dive into the mind of Tim Burgess.
After criss-crossing the globe, then band find themselves on our sunny shores after five long years. It’s something lead singer Tim Burgess doesn’t take for granted.
“We love playing in Australia so we’re really excited to be heading back” he says of their upcoming March tour. “Five years kind of flew by, it’s been too long. We toured the UK, Europe and America with our new album and it’s been such a pleasure to see how people love the new songs but it’s a great chance to play some big songs from all our other albums too.”
The band will be visiting most capital cities for a run of five dates, something Burgess is keen for when he says the last time he was here he didn’t have mush time to look around. What he does remember is having a sweet haircut in Sydney, not to mention that the crowds were awesome.
So what advice would Burgess give to a band who are about to tour Australia for the first time? “Get ready to have fun” he remarks. “Pack the sun block and take some time to look around“.
Since their last visit the band have been plenty busy following the release of Modern Nature, an impressive effort without a doubt. “Modern Nature seems to have gone done really well” Burgess muses. “We were pleased with it when we recorded it but it’s great to see people singing along and the reviews were saying some very complimentary things. I shouldn’t say we were surprised but we were definitely flattered.”
Following the Brookes’ passing, the band recruited three drummers; Peter Salisbury (of The Verve), Stephen Morris (of Joy Division / New Order) and Gabriel Gurnsey (of Factory Floor) to help with hitting the skins. Burgess laughs when the asked about having a revolving door of drummers.
“Three revolving drummers sounds like something Motley Crue – spinning round, all playing at the same time…on a rollercoaster. I don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up! We had three drummers playing on the album, at different times. Stephen Morris from New order, and of course Joy Division.”
“Gabe Gurnsey from Factory Floor and Pete Salisbury from The Verve – all three are brilliant so they gave us their own take of the songs. Pete drums for us live, so he’ll be on the tour with us.”
Burgess and his bandmates will be kicking off their Australian tour on March 11 in Sydney, and will be making their way around the country for the rest of the week. See below for the dates, and if you’re a hairdresser you might be in with a chance to give Tim Burgess his second sweet Australian haircut.
Friday, March 11th – Max Watts, Sydney
Saturday, March 12th – Max Watts, Brisbane
Sunday, March 13th – 170 Russell, Melbourne
Tuesday, March 15th – The Gov, Adelaide
Wednesday, March 16th – Capitol, Perth