NL Meets: Busted

A staple boy band known for iconic hits like Year 3000 and Crashed the Wedding, Busted paved the way for punk pop during the 00s. After going their separate ways in 2005, Charlie Simpson joined rock band Fightstar while Matt Willis and James Bourne teamed up with the McFly guys to form hybrid McBusted. Back together this year with a new album Night Driver, we sat down with the trio to talk 00s fashion, festive dressing and their fresh new sound.

Let’s talk about the new album – the sound is an eclectic blend influenced by several decades. Talk us through the thought process behind creating Night Driver. 
Charlie: ” We were just having fun being creative, and we just wrote and recorded as we went. We set up our synthesizers and just started jamming. A very natural process, we didn’t really think about it too much.”
Matt: “We just wanted to make music we thought was cool, and if we liked it, we carried on. If one person didn’t like it, we stopped and tried something new.”

You’ve all worked individually (with Charlie in Fightstar) and you guys with McBusted, so you’ve all covered different genres. What others would you like to try? 
Charlie: “I’d like to make a rap album… just kidding. I’d like to do film score stuff at some point though. I feel like this record was a genre we hadn’t really touched on before.”
Matt: “We scratched an itch on this album “
James: “It’s like an analogy of dinner on a plate – you want a bit of this and a bit of that, not just mashed potato.”

Are you appealing more to your fans with this album, or to the people who didn’t know you back in the 00s? 
 “We’re doing both. I think we are trying to appeal to the fans before and who are coming on this journey with this, and also trying to appeal to people who didn’t like us or even know us before “
James: “It’s harder to say you aren’t into our music if we’re producing so much different stuff”

It’s a bit like Lady Gaga isn’t it? She’s been trying to change up her game, dipping into different genres.
” Yes, she’s got a lot of love from different genres, especially from Country”
James: “Lady Gaga is brilliant like that, she’s the real deal”

There’s a number of bands who have re-united; are there any from your own childhood you’d like to see re-unite? 
 “REM. I’m a big REM fan”
Matt: “The Police for sure”

You guys were a staple band in the 00s. Is there anything you miss – the fashion or the hair perhaps?
 “Terrible hair! Er no. Fashion-wise I’m pretty much deleting a lot of it from my mind “
James: “I just thought it was a typical style, we were very young back then. I think it’s good to go with something in-the-moment though “
Matt: ” You aren’t really aware of how bad it is. I don’t miss anything from those days- I love wearing jeans that fit me now”

Are you guys excited for the tour? 
 ” We’re so excited because it’s going to be the first time we’ve played new music. We dabbled in our last tour, but this time it’s going to be a majority of the new record” 

Will you just be playing new music? 
Charlie: “No! We will pepper it with some old hits”
Matt: ” There will be some old bangers in there definitely but, we do want to show people the new record, and show them what we’re about right now” 

Do you guys co-ordinate with what you’re wearing on stage? 
 ” It depends what the situation is!”
Charlie: ” I like someone to tell me what to wear really, like say ‘Oh you look good in that’. I don’t feel like fashion is my thing. Matt is the fashionable one. We aren’t really fashionistas are we James?”
James: “No, no we’re not. I think I’m just lazy”

Party season is coming up, what would you typically wear to a festive event? 
 “I wouldn’t wear a suit, just a smart jacket”
Matt: ” I would wear a suit I think, but not suit trousers. So a shirt and a tie if it was a cocktail affair, and mix it up with a pair of jeans. I’m ridiculous though, I lay my clothes out the night before, I’m organised”
James: ” I’m lazy but… I have this Alexander McQueen tuxedo jacket that I bought for a different event and I know it’ll come in handy”

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