Continuing our look back at the classic interviews by the editors of the Dutch Go Duran fanzine.
Part 2: Simon, September 1994
Part 3: Warren, January 1995
November 23rd 1995, "Privacy", London, UK
“Whilst Warren was very approachable, Nick is far quieter. He doesn’t seem to relish the attention like Simon and Warren, and often it’s only once he gets to recognise someone that he’ll really have a conversation. He is always very polite and friendly and will rarely turn down a request for a photo or autograph. He is also very intelligent and does far more behind the scenes for the band than most people realise. He is also the only member of the band to really take notice of the fanzines. He helped Cherry Lipstick hold an auction at a meet-up in ’97. After getting in touch with him, he sent back photos, hand drawn pictures and a signed a load of albums and singles for us to auction.” (Cherry Lipstick, 2001)
"This interview with Nick was the afternoon of my 20th birthday. Nick was eating crisps when I arrived and was constantly trying to read the questions I'd prepared. The thing that struck me the most about him was how very masculine he is! Most people see Nick as quite feminine, but after the interview my view of him changed completely." (The Dutch Go Duran, 2003)
“The interviews were such an amazing thing to do. I was only 19 or 20 when I did them and when I interviewed Nick I was wearing badge that said ‘I love big willies’ or something similar! I also hit my head on the light fitting hanging over Warren’s kitchen table! Good memories indeed!” (2018)
Mandy: How's work on the new album going?
Nick: Which one?
How many are you working on?
Two. The Duran one [Medazzaland] and one with Warren [TV Mania]. The Duran one is going very well, there's about ten completed backing tracks now, except for vocals, and Simon's got about half the lyrics so far, so he's just got to get a little bit faster, and hopefully by Christmas time-ish we'll have all the lyrics and then finish them off in January here. We're very pleased with the way it sounds, it's got a real album feel to it because they were all written at the same time, they're not as disparate as the last record was. The other on is a thing which just happened to come about when Warren and I were playing around with some samples one day. We have an album title which is Bored With Prozac and the Internet, but we haven't decided on the name of the entity we're going to put it under yet.
Is that instrumental?
It's partly instrumental but there's a lot of vocal stuff on it, there's a lot of sampled sound. The television set is the source of a lot of our vocals. But Warren and I are just doing little bits here and there. It's been a nice diversion because the Duran stuff was very intense work.
Do you have any release time for this?
We're hoping the Duran one will be around May . I don't know. There's a possibility our record could even come out before that, it'll certainly be finished before Christmas.
Are you happy with the way [Medazzaland] is progressing?
Oh yeah, thrilled. It's got a lot of energy to it. To me it's more like the stuff we were doing very early on, it's like the first couple of albums more than the other ones. It's much more wild and frenetic.
John described it as 'trance punk'.
Well there's one track on it that I suppose one could describe as that, but it's just a lot more raw, in an energy way. It's not just noise.
Do you ever write any lyrics?
Did you write any for the Wedding Album?
Well I think that spoils it all really, doesn't it? What we tend to do with lyrics is try and get Simon to write most of them, but the odd things come up where there's something that somebody feels strongly about, and one of mine on the last album was lawyers. And er, yes, To Whom It May Concern was... somewhat mine. And Sin of the City was one of John's ideas at the time. Everybody in the band is perfectly capable of writing lyrics. I often feel with Simon that it's better if he writes them because he can sing them with more conviction, but that isn't of course true. There are plenty of singers out there that don't write at all but sing things with incredible conviction, so I think, you know, there'll be several songs on the album that will have had at least considerable input from other members, and I think that Simon will welcome that. Sometimes it's a big burden to write twelve lyrics very quickly.
Would you ever like to sing?
It's not top of my list. I'd be the first to say that I think my voice is not really geared to lead vocals, but I'm doing some things on this with Warren.
I interviewed Warren several months ago and he said you did a great punk impression and if you ever did a punk song, you'd have to sing lead.
(Laughs) Yeah, that's about the standard of my voice.
Were you disappointed with the lack of success of Thank You?
No. No not really. You see to me it was a success because we finished the thing and it came out on vinyl and on CD and cassette. The cover looked great and I thought the mixes sounded good, you know, and that's as far as I can go with it. It didn't sell as many copies as the Wedding Album, sure, I'd like it to have sold twice as many, but it's not... that's a bonus.
Do you find it disheartening when things don't do as well as you'd hoped them to?
No not really. It's not any one factor. If I looked at my record and thought it's not very good and we're going backwards then I'd find it very disheartening. But every time we put out a new record we have a new president at Capitol Records, that's very unhelpful. Commercial succes