“It’s a weird time and we wanted our album to be an escape...” - hmv.com talks to Texas
Lots of bands had a great time at the end of the 1990’s, but not many were as successful as Scottish pop rockers Texas. They dominated the charts with hugely successful LPs White On Blonde and The Hush and, at the last count, have career sales of around 35 million records.
The band return today with Jump On Board, their first album since 2013’s The Conversation and the ninth of their career to date. Recorded in London and Glasgow, it’s an upbeat collection of big-hearted pop rock.
We spoke to singer Sharleen Spiteri about making the new album and how she persuaded Thierry Henry to star in the band’s new video…
When did you start work on this album?
“We didn’t take much of a break, it feels like we’re always writing, writing, writing, and we got started right after we finished with The Conversation. We were putting things together right throughout the tour and then we went straight into recording.”
How did you want this album to move on from what you’ve done in the past?
“We don’t really think like that. The success of The Conversation, the fact it did so well, that really inspired us. It’s brilliant to know that you’re still relevant and people still want to hear what you’re up to, so it’s just about being better. You just go in with the mindset of wanting to write a great album, you don’t always get it right, but that’s the aim. We wanted to make a very positive and upbeat record. It’s a weird time and we wanted our album to be an escape, to make people dance and put their hands in the air.”
How did the songs come together? Was it a quick process this time round?
“This album was really fast and really enjoyable, which isn’t always the case with us, believe me. Sometimes writing for us is just a f***ing nightmare, like endlessly banging your head against a brick wall, some of our records have been really trying processes. This one wasn’t like that at all, in fact, we finished it without really noticing, it was all there quite quickly.”
You and guitarist Johnny McElhone produced the album, were you not tempted to get in an outside voice to help out?
“The way we make records now is different, we don’t demo, or do too much pre-planning, we just make records, it makes the album much cheaper. We don’t do all the songs and then go in and record them again in another studio, it’s much more working as you go along.”
What kind of album is this lyrically? Is there a common theme?
“They’re all their own little story, all different parts of my life, we’re not a band who sit down and say ‘On this album, we’re going to deal with this!’, I just try to get down what’s in my own head. That’s how I write.”
When did you settle on Jump On Board?
“It’s a line from ‘Let’s Work It Out’ and once we’d finished the record that line really stood out. It’s us saying, ‘Come with us, we’re going on a journey, leave your coats at the door’, so it’s a celebration.”
Thierry Henry is in the video for that track, how did you get him involved?
“He’s my mate, so I just asked him. It was great on set, watching all the crew go gaga when he walked in, grown men reduced to mumbles, it was highly amusing.”
How’s the touring looking? And what kind of set are you bringing out?
“This year is booked right up. Every single day has something going on, we’ve got a lot of touring, festivals right across Europe. We’ve done a few warm-up shows, literally playing pubs, and it’s sounding really good. We’ll be mixing up the new ones with all the older hits, I love that, making them feel tried and tested against our old songs, but we won’t be ramming them down anyone’s throats, it’s about telling a story, that’s what we try to do with our live shows..”