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Giitv’s Joe Coyle talked with Grant from Feeder they broached the subjects of the fans and the trials of touring.

Hi Grant. How is the tour going?

Yeah, really good. These are the only shows that Feeder have planned for the time being. We did plan on doing more but we are going to do these five and see how we feel. I’m quite keen to finish up the year and carry on writing and when it feels right go back and think about doing another album. I’ve got no real rush to do that. We don’t want to force a comeback too soon.

At the moment , Taka is doing a little thing in Japan that’s his side project and I’m doing my little, I don’t know what to call it, maybe solo record. I’m not sure what it’s going to be, It’s going to be a project outside feeder for me. A few of the songs I’m working on will probably end up on the next feeder record. I’m doing a lot of writing for other people and some production, using my experience to help people. Feeder aren’t calling it a day but every band needs time to go away and think about a new record. So we will finish this year and take a bit of time out.

How easy is it to get a set list together nowadays ?

Joe, I’m well known for being a bit of a nightmare when it comes to set lists. When you look at our back catalogue of music you can see why. I don’t like playing really long sets. I know people might think its value for money but I get bored if a band plays for too long, even my favourite bands. There is a certain amount of loud volume you can cope with. Anything over an hour and a half for me is testing , it’s got to be someone extremely exceptional to be entertaining for over 2 hours.

Our sets seem to be between an hour 20 and an hour and a half long. Sometimes a bit shorter or longer depending on the crowd and gig. Trying to fit 8 albums into that is very difficult, trying to keep it interesting for yourself but also trying to keep the fans happy.

I love playing the heavy stuff like Generation Freakshow and some of the early stuff like Descend. Often it depends on the way the songs get a reaction live to wether they make it into the set list. Just a day and Buck Rogers are incredibly popular live so we can’t leave those out. They are probably our two best known songs but for me we have better songs that I am more proud of writing.

Has your audience changed over the years?

We have a lot of young indie rock fans that come to our shows. Really young like 14 and that’s a new generation of people who are finding out about the band via the internet and for me that’s exciting. Is not like you come to a Feeder gig and the whole audience is 40, it’s a big mixture. With limited opportunities for promotion on tv and radio nowadays the Internet seems to be the way most new fans are finding out about us.

The frustrating thing is we have pockets of fans all over the world now and we don’t get to go to all those places because logistically it’s difficult to cover the costs of the touring. We are doing it on our own label now so we don’t have a record label for that level of support.

How does touring work for you as a band now?

We recently toured Japan. We had to take a different drummer on that tour because Damon had double booked himself with the Ray Davies tour which he had committed to before our dates came in. It was a stressful time with Tim learning a lot of tracks in a short space of time but in Japan we had a great time. It was intense, a lot of travelling, a lot of late nights, bit too much partying but it is always like that in Japan. It’s such a fun place to play. My partner is actually Japanese, so I have a real soft spot for Japan and obviously Taka does as well.

On tour we work with a great team of people there is no rockstar treatment. Everyone treated the same and everyone is out there to do a job. I hate all that ego stuff it’s better to make things work and be open to that way of working, you end up with nicer crew and a good tour if you work like that. Obviously we have families now so things are a bit less crazy than they used to be.

Do you have to make any concessions on tour because you are the singer?

I do need to rest my voice, protect it from the colds and infections on tour as much as possible. I like to do a few gigs in a row and have a night or two off so I can rest my voice. If I wasn’t singing I could do 11/ 12 gigs in a row no problem. You have to look after your voice. It’s the curse of being a singer.

It wasn’t a concious decision for me to be a singer , I just wanted to play guitar, write and do backing vocals. I’m quite hard on myself when it comes to vocals, but I have accepted what I do now. I’m quite lucky I don’t scream as much as I used to.

There are lots of vocals in Feeder’s stuff and obviously that’s my fault being the writer. There are a lot of words and not many breaks so I’m using my voice a hell of a lot on tour. My voice has to go through quite a range, low to falsetto to high. So set list wise I have to pace things out. Sometimes you get up there and hope the audience pulls you through it. Just a Day is quite tricky to sing as it has a lot of words in it, the good thing about that song is that if I didn’t sing it the audience would. You could get away with it on that song like Robbie Williams does with Angels. I’ve never quite had the balls myself to do that.

Tour Dates

17th November O2 Academy, Glasgow
18th November Manchester Academy
20th November Portsmouth Guildhall
21st November Civic Hall, Wolverhampton
23rd November O2 Academy, Brixton

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.