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Beady Eye funny interview

LONDON - It would be exhausting to be the combative caricature that is "Liam Gallagher" 24 hours a day, so thankfully the frontman of Beady Eye doesn't even try. The more mellow figure GQ meets with his bandmates in John Henry studios in North London is in a cheery mood, whether discussing Shane Meadows' Made In Stone documentary ("It looks absolutely fucking biblical - especially my bit") or debating the merits of the new Daft Punk album (drummer Chris Sharrock says it sounds like "Steely Dan with the Smash potato men singing over the top of it"). Gallagher is particularly keen to share his admiration for Miles Kane, not only musically but also for choosing to make his own decisions on how much leopard skin is too much. "You can't be having stylists mate," says Gallagher with feeling "You can't look good all the time but when you do you want to take all the credit, not some knobhead called Giles." Inevitably, Gallagher's own sunglasses remain on throughout.

We are here to discuss BE, Beady Eye's new record that marks a quantum leap forward from the meat-and-potatoes rock of their 2011 debut Different Gear Still Speeding. Some credit will certainly go to Dave Sitek, the cosmic producer behind TV On The Radio, but some must also go to a band finally deciding to step out of the enormous shadow of Oasis. To mark the release this month, GQ sat down with the band - Gallagher and Sharrock joined by guitarists Gem Archer and Andy Bell - to discuss tour bus survival tactics, drinking with Jimmy Carr and why Gallagher doesn't believe in Yeezus.

What lyric are you most proud of writing on the new album?
Liam: "Ten years later /We'll still remember / Throwaway songs we learn today." We like all the lyrics, all the songs, man. If you'd pulled out one, you'd be a cunt.

Working titles for the album included Lay Off My Avocado Baby and Universal Gleam. Any others?
Gem: Flick Of the Finger was called Velvet Building for ages because Liam wanted the drumbeat to be like the Velvet Underground. I went "How?" He said "just building [up]... for four minutes." Now in our heads we think of it as this great big purple townhouse.

What did you argue with Be producer Dave Sitek about?
LG: We only had five weeks so I guess he wanted to make a list of songs and get out of there. But we were adamant that we wanted to record every demo that we had. You don't know until you've tried: a song could take a fucking mad turn. That was pretty much it - other than stop burning sage because we can't see anything!
G: Apparently there is a certain type of burnable sage but Andy reckons [Sitek] was basically burning condiments...

What's your karaoke song?
L: I've never done it man. If I did and I did it with the missus and it would be that tune, that Dolly Parton one with Kenny Rogers. Islands In the Stream? That's a fucking tune. I'd do that honest to God.
Andy: I'd do something like My Way. That would suit me. I'm thinking dignified, that's where I'm going with it. I'm not doing Agadoo.

What have you bought on tour you've regretted?
L: Cockin' hell. Drugs? I find it's more what you bring on tour that you regret. When you think, What have I brought that fucking stupid jacket for? You got to carry it about all year.
Chris: I bought a bit of the Berlin wall that was in a minibar for about £8.
G: You buy stuff, you put it in the cases and then about four months after the tour has finished, they give you some voodoo stick you've bought in Mexico.

What do you read in every interview that annoys you?
L: I guess it's the Oasis thing really - but you've got to answer it, haven't you, or else people think you're up your own arse? They keep asking about Oasis when we're trying to talk about this. But the minute you go, "We're not talking about Oasis", people just go "you knob."
G: I pointed it out gently on the phone to a guy recently. "You know that's five questions in a row about Oasis?" There was a real big long pause, he came up with something else and then he had his last question, "OK what would you say is the main difference between Liam and Noel?"

What's a Beady Eye Groupie like?
L: Hairy.
A: Lairy.
C: Scary.
G: And they make you wary.

What's your tour bus survival tip?
L: Keep an eye on the driver and talking to him as much as you can. Keep nudging 'em. We've had a couple of alcoholics and the odd crackhead. Some of the drivers go: "Hey, you guys are so nice man. You guys are always talking to me." Listen mate, I think you're a dick- I'm only talking to you to keep you awake.
G: We've ended up on the hard shoulder a few times haven't we? There are certain times when you're in Germany where you just hear "brrrRRRRRRRRRRrrr." You don't get back to sleep after that. And in America, they're allowed to drive for 20 hours. They have a cup they piss in.
A: So never accept a cup of coffee off the driver either…

What's been your worst experience at a festival?
A: Mine is Sweden. I took my daughter who is 14 to a gig as she lives there. She came on the tour bus to a really nice festival to see loads of really big bands like Primal Scream, Suede and the Prodigy. It was pouring with rain and there's basically no one there. There were only 30 people with umbrellas watching us. Wasn't impressive at all.
L: Next time she'll say "I'm alright Dad - I'm doing my homework."

Which band would you like to see reform?
A: The Kinks, as they were one of the few that haven't.
L: I'd like to see The Smiths. I never seen 'em - I weren't a big fan - but I know all the fucking songs because my brother was into them. I remember when they split up, man. People were proper running around like headless chickens in Manchester. They got a lot of tunes, man.

At GQ Men Of The Year, Jimmy Carr described Liam as "if John Lennon had been reincarnated with Tourettes". Liam then said something to him on stage that ruffled him. What was it?
L: Some kind of cryptic shit, I can't tell you mate. I like Jimmy Carr - I'm in touch with him actually. He's a dude. We were in this mad hotel in New York, The Bowery. It was 3am in the morning and he walks in with his suitcase. He was going to bed but we got him on the piss. We were well gone and then this mad blondie girl from New York has spotted us and walks in. She turns around and says to Jimmy, "What's with the Eighties flick man?" And he turns round to her and says, "What's with the fat arse?" [laughs]

Have you ever had sex to one of your own records?
L: Fuck that! Especially if I'm singing! Or our kid!
G: One has come on in the middle of an ipod and it's not a good feeling. You think, "Do I mention this or do I try and stop it?" Keeping going is not the right answer….
L: "One second… can you turn it up a bit? Can you rewind that?"

Have you ever cheated death?
A: I had a pretty severe allergic reaction on a jet plane. It was pretty heavy. That flight was very eventful: I got on the flight to Miami with the guys as we were off to South America on tour. The first little bite of my food something felt weird. I started swelling up, feeling very itchy, very weird, overheating, finding it hard to breathe. As it was getting to the stage where I thought I won't be able to breathe, I walked up to the toilets and started throwing up really heavily. Managed to get one of our security guys, Steve, to get my adrenalin out and stick it in my leg. Then I had the best three days of my life! The adrenalin is great, if you ever have to use it. It's good - it lasts for ages and when it wears off you think, "Oh, it's just the Epipen. I thought I'd reached a new level in fitness and health and life."

Describe your worst haircut.
L: Mine's probably the Jesus centre parting thing I had a few years ago. I look at it now and just think: "You dick." Felt good at the time though.
A: I had a quiff when I was about 16. I went for the Morrissey - that's bad news that. I always wanted really long hair - the full Neil From The Young Ones. And a beard. But I'm cursed with hair that only ever gets medium.
G: I went for the full Taxi Driver once: the full Travis Bickle. My mam made me eat upstairs until it grew back. Seriously, she thought I was a right troublemaker.
L: "Are you talking to me, Mam?"

Liam, is your jacket Pretty Green?
L: I'm not telling you who it is - I'm not giving them any fucking publicity!
G: I'm not telling you who this jacket is from as I bloody had to pay for it.
A: It's written on the buttons…
G: Anyway, it all works out man because some of my favourite sunglasses cost £7.
C: You know that ZZ Top record "Cheap Sunglasses" - it's about a hangover so bad you've got to go and get some.
G: I was speaking to someone the other day - the geezer who he works with wears £900 jeans. That's wrong isn't it? Jeans should be £60, maximum.
L: That is wrong. Levi's all the way man.

What do you make of Kanye West calling his album Yeezus?
L: I couldn't give a fuck what that fuckin clown gets up to. Have you seen when he bumped his head? He's coming out of the gym with that bird and there are geezers taking pictures. You have to put your head up and carry on walking. He's gone [mimes putting his head down] and walked straight into a fucking pole. You hear it go "dink" and him tell people to stop taking pictures. Put your head up so you know what you're doing! Smashed his head up: he's a fucking idiot. You'll never see Jesus banging his head.

Have you ever stolen anything?
G: Who hasn't? You know my picture of John Lennon that's by my piano in the basement…
L: Are you sure you want to say this? "Gem Archer: tea leaf." Could ruin your whole career…
G: I was in my old band and they were showing the Stones' rock and roll movie at the Astoria on the same night they were launching something to do with the Beatles on Savile row. That was the night I got up on the roof. We were in John Lennon's office in Apple. There were all these photos around. I knew the [PR] girl as she did something with the Boo Radleys, I pointed to one and said "That's great can I buy that? and said "Gem, just take it - no one will notice." I felt like one of the Rutles walking out. My Eric Idle moment!

What should no man have in his wardrobe?
L: Another naked man.
A: Clothing wise, definitely no silk socks, dungarees and waistcoats - I'm not a big fan of waistcoats.
G: Fuck I was going to bust one out! I heard a story that the Who's John Entwistle used to keep a proper skeleton in every wardrobe in his house.

What's the strangest place you've heard Beady Eye?
A: Hollyoaks. I'm a fan of Hollyoaks - normally just by day as the night one is a bit hardcore isn't it? Brings me out in a hot flush.

What's the strangest gift you've ever got from a fan?
G: I got a wreath once. It was in Spain. That was really dark.
L: The usual: crabs. [laughs] You know that's got to have been said a million times. Like Lemmy: get in there! I met him once on a plane. I thought, "I'm not going to drink on this flight, I'm going to wind my neck in. Can I get a water please?" Next minute a pair of cowboy boots get put down beside me. He looked at me and said "What the fuck are you doing drinking water?"
G:I was on that flight. All Lemmy got off the plane with was duty free and his cowboy boots.

Who do you see as your competition?
L: No-one. Us. Ourselves. We're not part of a scene. We're just doing our own thing. We want to be left alone so we can get on with it. It's not Noel, it's not Kasabian, it's no-one really.
A: Noel's carrying on the Oasis brand himself and hopefully we're ploughing our own path a bit more.
G: Me and Chris were saying we think we've earned our place over here to be left alone to do our thing.
A: But still come and see us and buy the record.

When were you last starstruck?
L: When I went in the toilet a minute ago and looked in the mirror.
A: I met Debbie Harry, that was pretty amazing. Had a photo with her.I got a peck on the cheek.

Can you recommend a good book?
G: Wonderland Avenue. I read it years ago. It's about LA when it was all kicking off with The Stooges and Jim Morrison. It's this young kid Danny Sugerman and he's seen as a good eye and a good ear. There are some funny bits in it man: Jim Morrison's dad chasing him around the pool trying to give him a crew cut.
A: If you like conspiracy theories Voodoo Histories by David Aaronovitch is a top book.
C: The Arthur Lowe biography: A Life That Led To Mainwaring.

What's the best thing you can cook?
L: I really can't cook man.
G: I'm getting into it. Apparently all the teenagers that my kids drag in reckon that my mash is the bollocks. The key is that you can't rush the mash. I shouldn't be giving you all my secrets but it depends on the potatoes: if you put cold milk in it makes it lumpy. Cut the potatoes small enough but not so small that they get watery when they're done.

What's the best advice you've ever received?
A: He didn't give it to me personally but Phil Spector's motto was, "Be good to rock'n'roll and rock'n'roll will be good to you."
L: I've got one like that. John Lennon: "Everything will be OK in the end. And if it ain't ok, then it ain't the end."

What do you fear you'll be remembered for?
L: Not cooking. Any regrets? Not really no. It was all meant to be no matter what you do.
A: Nothing. I don't think made much of an impression on the world yet. Not that I really wanted to be remembered anyway but in the end…

another recent Q & A
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Beady Eye gigography and next tour dates


30 May - Forum, Milan, Italy (the first "Noeless" gig since 1991 when he didn't join Oasis yet)

summer tour without Noel


16 November - Andy Bell unplugged - Debaser, Stockholm, Sweden (bootleg)


3rd & 4th March - Barrowland, Glasgow, Scotland +here and here + bootleg
6th & 7th March - O2 Apollo, Manchester +bootleg 1 +bootleg 2
9th & 10th March - Troxy, London +bootleg 1
13 March - Casino de Paris, Paris, france
14 March - E-Werk, Koln, Germany
16 March - Alcatraz, Milan, Italy +dvd bootleg
18 March - La Riviera, Madrid, Spain +bootleg
19 March - Bikini, Toulouse, france
21 March - Paradiso, Amsterdam, Holland (bootleg)
22 March - Ancienne Belgique, Brussels, Belgium (bootleg)
14 & 15 April - The Olympia Theatre, Dublin, Ireland here a bootleg image
17 April - Ulster Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland
20 April - O2 Academy, Newcastle (a photo here)
23 April - Centre, Newport (photo and bootleg)
30 May - Grosse Freiheit 36, Hamburg, Germany
+a photo here + win tickets here
8 June - Saschall, Firenze, Italy +my story here +bootleg here +win tickets here
11th June - Papillons de Nuit Festival, Saint Lo, france
12 June - Isle of Wight festival +story here and here +interview here +videos here +interview and bootleg here
25th June - Theater of Living Art, Philadelphia, U.S.A.
30 June - Rock Werchter, Belgium (bootleg)
1 July - Main Square Festival, Arras, france +a photo here
7 July - BBK Live Festival, Bilbao, Spain
9 July - Oxegen Festival, Naas, Ireland
26 August - Reading Festival (win tickets) +videos here +review&video here +bootleg here
3 September - AX Hall, Seoul, South Korea
14 September - Twinkle Rock Festival, Taipei, Taiwan
7 October - Atlantico, Rome, Italy +main bootleg here +another bootleg here
+win the concert here
11 October - Volkshaus, Zurich, Switzerland (postponed)
13 October - Gasometer, Vienna, Austria (postponed)
31 October - Theater Caupolican, Santiago, Chile
2 November - Teatro de Verano Ramon Collazo, Montevideo, Uruguay
3 November - Teatro Colegiales, Buenos Aires, Argentina
4 November - Personal Festival, Buenos Aires, Argentina
5 November - Planeta Terra festival, Sao Paulo, Brazil
12 November - O2 Academy, Sheffield
14 November - O2 Academy, Birmingham
17 November - O2 Academy Brixton, London
2 December - The Warfield, San Francisco, U.S.A.
3 December - Wiltern Theatre, Los Angeles, U.S.A. +another complete review here +win tickets here and here
5 December - First Avenue, Minneapolis, U.S.A.
6 December - The Rave Ballroon, Milwaukee, U.S.A.
9 December - Terminal 5, New York, U.S.A.
10 December - House of Blues, Boston, U.S.A.


new tour


3 June - Abbey Road, London (acoustic) +bootleg here
7 June - McClusky's, Kingston (album launch acoustic gig)

8 November - Olympia Theatre, Dublin, Ireland


Noel Gallagher solo gigography, and Low Lying Turds tour dates

(although his blinded fans say he's a "new solo artist", it's 20 years he's around and already played "solo" gigs previously (the first one in 1994), with the help of other people of course, as the Unplugged 1996, the gig for Tibet, the tour in 2006-2007, London, Milan, Manchester, Moscow, Los Angeles, Toronto, Paris, Australia, etc.)


25 March - Royal Albert Hall - London


28 November - Alcatraz - Milan, Italy + review here +video bootleg here +audio and video bootleg here


lost interest... even Noel got bored of himself

10 April - Auditorio Banamex - Monterrey, Mexico (cancelled)



fans leave the gig again and ask for Liam again

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