Interview with Craig from

The Sunshine Underground

by Adrian Brown

Love the new single, spell it out.  Has anyone told you it sounds a bit Musey?


Ha ha, yes, I get that.


Is that a good thing or a bad thing?


No, thatís cool.  I think it does as well, ha ha.  Yeah, itís quite big and has similar components I think but thatís a good thing for us.  I think theyíre a great band.


The vocals remind me of Public Image Limited and even more so on ĎComing to save youí.  Are you a fan?


I definitely am and I think it is a bit of a coincidence as well but a lot of people have said that.  Even from our first album, a lot of people have kind of put that comparison out there but I think heís got a good vocal style and lyrically heís pretty spot on as well and theyíre a great band


The albumís got a much bigger, highly polished sound than your earlier songs and sounds almost like youíve gone up a gear.  Is this the producerís influence and was this a conscious effort to move the band into the mainstream?

We toured the first album for so long and we were really into the first record but by the end of it we kind of wanted it to sound different to how it did so with this album we were quite conscious of how we wanted it to sound so we kind of co-produced it.  The idea was to get something that reflects how we sound live; a bigger, fuller more guitar heavy kind of sound, which wasnít shown off to its full potential on the first record I donít think.


Itís certainly got more of an arena kind of sound to itÖ


I think weíve always had like big, anthemic kind of songs that are quite immediate but the idea was to make them as big as they could possibly be, especially, as you said, the new single which is quite Musey.  As a production thing itís quite similar in a way.


For anyone new to The Sunshine Underground and from your own point of view, how would does this album compare to your earlier stuff?


With this one weíve tried to make more of a guitar record really.  We have dance influences which are quite apparent when you see us live more so than whatís represented on the records.  This album is more of a collection of two years worth of the best songs that we thought that we could write really and put over in an organic, live sort of style.  Consciously we try and change.  There is always a progression and a purpose for every album.  This one was a song writing album.

By the way, did you know that Amazon is charging over £20 for your first album Raise the Alarm?


Ha, ha. I know itís still cheap on iTunes!, itís only seven quid, ha, ha.


I donít know if youíre like me but I still prefer to buy the CD and Iíd still buy vinyl if I had the space.


I think vinylís in a different league now but Iíd have always bought vinyl as well.  Youíve always got the artwork as well which canít quite be replicated when you get the CD.

Youíre originally from the Telford area but are known as a Leeds band and your live dates in Leeds are often described as home coming gigs.  Where do you call home?


Itís difficult.  Leeds is where I live and I have done for like ten years or something now but obviously we all grew up together in Telford and Shrewsbury.  Thatís where we went to school and formed the band and all that kind of stuff and thatís where all family connections are but the band didnít really kind of get going until we moved up to Leeds.  We did it on kind of a group mission so as a band and a project it come from Leeds really but as far as people, the Midlands is always home.

Youíve played lots of festival dates over the past three years.  Do you prefer festivals to other venues?


As a band we love to play live and I think thatís where weíve built our reputation over the past few years so where ever that takes us really, I mean, we like doing the big gigs but we also like doing the small more intimate gigs and festivals are such a cool thing to do Ďcause you get to see all your mates that are in bands as well and hang out so I think festivals are the best things about a tour which all bands look forward to when they come around again.  They take you out of that general, generic kind of gigging scenario which makes it more interesting and you donít know what bands youíll get put with.  I found out yesterday that weíre doing a gig with Doves and I love Doves ha, ha!  Festivals are really brilliant.  They map out your summer for you in a way.


Well, I think Iíve over run my time slot with you so one last quick question.  In an ideal world, how do you see the future for The Sunshine Underground.


Erm yeah, ha, ha! We just want to keep making good records.  Thatís our priority really.  Every albumís going to evolve and have a purpose and the live thing will stay as good as we think it is so yeah, weíre committed to making good music and not thinking to much about all the rubbish that comes along with making it, ha, ha!


The Sunshine Underground are:
Craig Wellington
Stuart Jones
Daley Smith
Matthew Gwilt

Live dates:
4 Jun 2010
Lotherton Hall, Leeds Uni Ball, Leeds
10 Jun 2010
Bulldog Cafe, Mexico City
18 Jun 2010
Hoxton Bar And Kitchen, London
10 Jul 2010
T In The Park, Kinross

13 Aug 2010
Leicester Summer Sundae


Adrian Brown -
Chris Davis -
Claire White -
Francois Lassagne
Tom Wigley
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Tel: 01827 830725