JOHN ROBB Interview.
We talked to singer, songwriter, TV pundit, Radio DJ, author but most importantly, music legend John Robb about everything.
John discussed his influences, forming his band The Membranes, The Stone Roses comeback, Oasis reunion, new bands, Festivals and more. Read the interview below with the founder of one Britain's biggest alternative music websites Louder than War.
KUL BRITANIA: HI JOHN, THANKS FOR DOING THIS INTERVIEW. CAN YOU START BY TELLING OUR FOLLOWERS A BIT ABOUT YOU LIKE WHERE YOU GREW UP AND WHO YOU GREW UP LISTENING TO BACK IN THE DAY?
JOHN ROBB: I grew up in Blackpool which is near Manchester. It's got a tower like Eiffel Tower that's what the city is famous for. Initially, I liked Glam Rock i.e. T Rex, David Bowie but also bands such as Slade and then punk came along and with punk you could get involved and that always great about it. The DIY of punk that you could make your own music. That was really inspiring for a lot of us.So the same stuff as everyone else...Pistols, The Clash, Buzzcocks and I particularly liked the Stranglers ... great band not particularly a proper punk band but just a great band. They had the aggression and they were psychedelic, their music was really imaginative and they wrote great songs.
KB: WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO GET INVOLVED IN MUSIC AND THEN GO ON TO FORM A BAND CALLED THE MEMBRANES?
JR: It was totally punk rock really...The Spiral Scratch EP the Buzzcocks put out and the idea that you could make your own record was really powerful for us. The idea that anybody could do it, anybody could play, anybody could be involved that was quite important. We didn't really know what we were doing but we went ahead and started doing it. It was to see bands play down the road in Lancaster, a city near Blackpool. We saw The Ramones there, The Stranglers and when we came back from gigs people just wanted to play in their own bands. They were super inspired to do it. We started playing our music and it wasn't like straight punk music because the whole idea was to make music to sound like you. There was no point in being a direct copy of everyone else and that was a band called The Membranes and it was quite an original sounding band. We were into bass guitars so the bass was the key instrument We usually wrote the songs on the bass and John Peel used to play us a lot.
KB: IS IT TRUE JOHN THAT YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN THE FIRST BAND TO SIGN TO CREATION RECORDS BUT MCGEE HAD NO MONEY FOR THE STUDIO?
JR: That sounds crazy now but at the time he didn't have the money. He couldn't afford to put the record out. It couldn't happen because there was no money to do it. I used to hang around a lot with McGee before he started Creation. We would talk about the band and the label and things like that.
KB: THE MEMBRANES ARE GIVING A SERIES OF GIGS NOW, WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THAT AND WHERE WILL YOU BE PLAYING IN THE NEXT COMING MONTHS?
JR: We are playing round the UK. It's weird because we haven't been around for a long time. The Membranes was a cool band so we are getting a lot stuff at the moment but I think that when we release the new album, it will get a lot good press and radio. It's a pretty unique record, doesn't really sound like anything else. This will be our first record since 1989.
I never really stopped playing music because I played in Goldblade as well but it will be the first record with the Membranes since 1989. I've been touring and putting records out all my life really. I play the bass in there. It's close to the music that's more me, you know? It's kind of punk but with a twist, more post punk I'd say, not punk directly.