february 2000

part 2 of 2

what's your take on the demise of creation? was it time to put a lame horse to pasture?
it was an emotional day the day it was announced that they were folding. i loved creation records. i don't think that we would have been allowed to do what we did on any other label, and though i know that alan mcgee cared nothing for our music, i am proud to have played a part in the company. creation records to me is primal scream, jesus and mary chain, the house of love, biff bang pow, sfa, ed ball, oasis, etc. great times, great friends, love, love, love.

apart from the friend factor, what led you to wichita versus signing to a major? does chosing the 'road less travelled' lead to more creative output?
t here was never any question of me going to a major label. it would have been creation or with somebody involved with creation. having the chance to make records with my best friend and with dick green who was our biggest supporter and friend from when we joined the label is great. i couldn't work with a major label. i 'm not a product. i don't have a desperate need to be famous like other bands i could mention, so there are no advantages to my being on a major. record companies are intrusive, meddlesome, and condescending by definition. wichita will be no different, but at least i know they are doing it out of love.

what's your take on the current 'music scene'. it seems that right now if you're not named britney or korn, there's little place for you. are great bands being ignored by the charts? and is that necessarily a bad thing?
i find the fact that you think there is only britney and korn bewildering. what about pole and mapstation and sizzla and dead prez and kid 606 and anti pop consortium and the bands on wichita, bright eyes and her space holiday? what about teebone and queens of the stone age and sfa and gorkys?
if you get your musical information and education from mtv and top 40 radio, then you'll miss out on so much - all you will hear is what major record companies want you to hear. that's why shite like muse and coldplay and robbie williams and travis are so popular. they get pushed down our throats because they are safe and bland and sound a bit like other guaranteed moneymakers (usually radiohead). they belong in that cold, antiseptic, sterile world where mtv is king. look at the mercury music awards over here. something like "exterminator" could never win an award like that, an award that celebrates mediocrity and blatant tokenism. i would be offended to be even nominated for a piece of shit award like that. i don't need some dickheads with musical degrees telling me that i 'm good, and anyone who does must have a serious confidence problem.
music isn't about awards and charts - it's about self-expression and liberation about defiance and individuality (and not the individuality that is used to sell us almost everything on the tv these days). it's about soul and vision. fuck the charts, i 've been in the charts and it changes nothing. music has been around for thousands of years, forever. music charts have been here for 60/70 years. they are just an excuse for record companies to twitch the corpse, to sell and re-sell, re-make, re-model, the same crap over and over again.

you've been a very active captain in terms of the internet. how do you think fansites and internet communities affect the fanbase of artists? what's been its most direct impact on you?
i think the most direct influence on me was being able to keep in touch with people. after the boos split, my confidence was very low, and it seemed like there was nobody who had ever liked us, it really did feel like that. but by being able to see the fans who still wrote the websites, their support and encouragement gave me the stimuli to carry on.
i think it's incredibly exciting. i love working on my website and that's just going to get better and better. i have met some inspiring people through the 'net and discovered some incredible things. i guess it depends what you do with it.
i have an inquisitive mind, so it's perfect for me. some people like to just download porn all day, which is cool, too, if that's where you are at - it's just a waste, i guess.

what - and not just music, but perhaps life in general - inspires martin carr?
i think books are still my greatest inspiration. my dad taught me to read before i started school and i have never stopped. i read mainly biogs and factual books and stuff like jung and the i ching - lots of stuff i don't claim to fully understand but read to keep the old mind ticking over. i am very lazy and i think if i didn't read i would rapidly vegetate. fante, hunter s thompson, meltzer, books on the panthers, che guevara, descartes, auster, brautigan, "kaddish" by ginsberg, i love that. 'the hollow men' by ts eliot.
that was one of the things i hated about school. we just read crap, and when we did read something good, such as steinbeck or 'to kill a mockingbird', they were treated more like tales, rather than dwelling on the historical social implications and how they were still relevant today. i read to learn, i don't want to read any "high fidelity" crap.
politics inspires me, or rather disgusts me. the fact that it is the year 2000 and we still cannot feed or clothe all the people in the world even though we have more than enough resources for everyone to live peacefully and happily...that racism still thrives (and on some levels is encouraged) in the form of economic warfare...that laws are passed to illegalise any attempt by schools to educate kids on homosexuality, thinking, in their manifest ignorance, that a person can be somehow made homosexual, that it is not something as natural and as beautiful as heterosexuality - this is open fascism.
bill hicks has probably inspired my way of thinking more than any other human, the teachings of lao tzu and jesus, whether you believe in these people or not (and i don't most of the time) is irrelevant. anyone who preaches love and tolerance and is against greed and war is cool by me. oh, and people who swear a lot, those cunts are fucking great!

in 1993 - 'i'm only 23, my hair is thin, my size is large, what have i done to me?'. in 1995 - 'i'm 25, and don't recall a time i felt this alive'. in 1999 - 'now i 'm scared of death for the first time, all my friends say i look better but my health is gone'. in 2000...?
wow! i sound like a miserable fucker, don't i ? i do have really bad days but don't question them any more. it's the way i am and i cannot change that. there are black shapes at my shoulder, but i have a good life and a beautiful wife, so i wouldn't insult you by complaining about anything. i 'm 31 now and have a certain contentment. i never totally relax, and tend to feel caged if i don't get out or go away for a while, but songs and words float in on the breeze and i am truly grateful.

is there hope for humanity?


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