One record, one gig. At least that was the intention, but the plans have changed. Fortunately. In May the follow-up to ‘Just Another Regular Summer’ will be released, the sensational good debut album. The Speedways is Matt Julian’s band and he is inspired by the music of Paul Collins, Cheap Trick, The Cars, Tom Petty and The Exploding Hearts, among others. And the good thing is, you can hear that inspiration on all songs.
With every song you write are you learning to become a better songwriter?
Kind of yeah. You learn what it is that you do best. Lyrically I always try to improve. I do think that the more you write the more bad habits you lose – which is a good thing – Your arrangements become better and you don’t over complicate things as much.
As an artist, you chose to show your emotions to the world. Is it always comfortable to do so?
I had a moment on stage once when I was singing ‘Regular Summer’ where I suddenly realized I was telling a room full of people what a broken man I am! ..but for the most part, it’s not an issue at all. I like to write that kind of sad songs.
Any idea how to turn this one (forthcoming new album ‘Radio Sounds’) into a million-seller?
I think that ship sailed a long time ago! but I do believe whatever level you are you should aim to make a ‘hit’ record. You have to allow yourself the chance to think “what will I wear on Top Of The Pops?” otherwise there’s no point making a record is there? It’s gonna be a strong album and I hope people like it – a million of them!
What’s the gig you will always remember & why?
The first one (which was supposed to be the only one) at The Finsbury in London. Lots of friends made the effort to be there and we played a great set. The Baby Shakes were on the front row singing along next to my monitor. It was the most ‘Power Pop’ moment in history. We’d only had a couple of rehearsals but we nailed it. I also thought the show at the Wurlitzer Ballroom in Madrid was great too. Our first time in Spain and it was a busy night. People knew the words which was flattering as fuck! I really enjoyed that one.
When was the last time you thought “I just wrote a hit”?
I always think that! There’s a song on the new album called ‘In A World Without Love It’s Hard To Stay Young’ that I have a good feeling about. Not that I think it’ll be a hit single! – just that people might like that one. I remember thinking ‘Reunion In The Rain’ would have been a hit for the Ronettes in 1964…
You can’t control the way people “hear” music, but if you could make them aware of certain aspects you think set your songs apart, what would they be?
I don’t know as anything sets them apart. It’s hard to answer without sounding delusional! I write catchy songs with themes of disappointment & regret. They’re quite melancholy I guess, but not in an emo way!..more of a Del Shannon way. I could never write party songs or political songs. I mean, I enjoy those kinda songs by other bands, it’s just not something I’m good at. I think love songs are the backbone of all forms of pop music & I try to write them as sincerely as I can. The first album was a ‘love letter’ to a moment in my life, the second album has songs that are a response to ‘Regular Summer’ but there are a few genre pieces too.