Scottish starlets The View – due to play Arthur’s Day this coming Thursday – cemented themselves in the consciousness of indie-rock fans with 2007’s debut Hats Off to the Buskers, a record that spawned hits like the infectious ‘Same Jeans’ and ‘Wasted Little DJs’ before the bulk of the group had edged out of their teens. Second album Which Bitch? proved somewhat less successful in terms of singles, but, on the evidence of lead guitarist Pete Reilly’s feisty interview style, has done little to put off lofty ambitions.
Reilly, in fact, makes no bones about telling the media just how high the band is aiming. “We want to match Oasis,” he tells State, answering our questions in quick-fire staccato. “We’re very much a lad’s band. The new album is not exactly like Definitely Maybe, but it definitely has hints of it. We’ve always looked up to Oasis in a big way. They’re a band we’d like to emulate. I can definitely see a reunion in the future; they’re not done. We’d love to be remembered like Oasis, just as the ultimate lads band. We won’t fall out, though. We’re like brothers, and if there’s ever an argument it’s all forgotten about the next day.”
To be fair, The View’s tours sound not unlike the well-documented shenanigans that took place on the Manchunians notorious worldwide treks. “There’s a lot of partying, yeah. By the end of it all we want to do is go home, lie on a couch and spend a couple of weeks doing nothing. We’ve relocated to Liverpool because of the atmosphere and the heritage, really. It’s still a small city, but it’s got a lot going for it musically, and it’s a bit different to living in Dundee, where we’d get recognized walking down the street, so we have a bit of space. Doing nothing is more of an option.”
The as-yet-untitled third album is already “in the process of being mastered,” but is not due for release until Spring 2011. Reilly describes it as “very much like our first record, like a return to when we were growing up,” which, given that particular record’s success, is arguably the best spin the band could put in the album. With the two albums to date reaching number one and number four in the UK album charts, The View have come to see albums as “far more important than singles. The singles are mainly for radio play, and a way to promote the albums.” Given that the group’s debut was substantially more successful than the follow up, their next record could well prove make or break.
The release date seems strangely late, especially given that The View’s local festival, T In The Park, have already been given a preview of parts of the album. “The single’s coming out first, towards the end of October”, Pete explains, “then we’ll head off on tour at the beginning of November. We’ll probably be coming to Ireland for that as well. The album will have to wait until the end of January or something a bit later. It’s all still undecided. We have to finish the mixing, and the album artwork’s important. We haven’t sorted that yet.”
The frustration at times is very apparent. “We’d rather have the album mastered on the Friday and in the charts on the Monday,” Pete explains, “We finished it months ago. It’s all the crap going on around it that stops it coming out. Apart from T In The Park, we’ve played it at a few secret gigs. We don’t want to perform the new stuff too much before the album’s out, but so far it seems to have gone down really well. It definitely fits in, and the new tunes are really strong, so it’s a brilliant set.”
‘Same Jeans’ remains by far The View’s most recognizable single, and the band seem to see it with mixed feelings. “It’s a little different to what we normally produce. We often try to make the singles that little bit different to what we normally do, just for variety, and that’s something that we’ll continue to do on the new album. It is a bit odd, though, that we’re best known for something that’s not really typical of us.”
As for the live show: “we like to jump around like mad things on stage. We did it more when we first started out; as 18- and 19-year-olds out on tour it’s difficult not to just go mental. Now we’re a bit more professional, we’ve had a bit of time to kind of sit back after being thrown in the deep end. It was all just a whirlwind for the first two years. We’ve changed a lot in out attitude towards music. We’ve really grown up, at first it was just a bit surreal.”
In typical lad-ish style, Pete tells State that Scotland and Ireland connect not so much through their Celtic roots but “because we’re like a clique against England,” before proclaiming a deep love of Guinness – established over several extracurricular trips to Ireland (“it definitely tastes better over there”) – and promising to “play something Irish while we’re over there.” It might not be PC, but we have a feeling this bunch of lads will fit right in.
As published on State.ie, September 2010.