What a strange week in the life of Keane. Exactly a week ago I was sitting on the Eurostar in a half-sleep, having just played the last gig of our European tour in Paris and then spent the entire night in the studio with Kanye West. He played us the whole of his new album, which sounded truly awesome – the bass was so fat that eventually the mixing desk blew up. I was especially pleased when he picked out a line from Spiralling ("When we fall in love, we’re just falling in love with ourselves") as being a personal favourite, as it’s my favourite line I’ve ever written. Hurrah. Then Kanye did some work on one of our tracks, and after that I sat in a corner and watched him do his thing on a song for Jamie Foxx. The whole thing was a real privilege and I learned a lot. I wish I had Kanye’s energy…and his dress sense! Will work on it.
The Paris gig was a great way to end the tour – I think we were all slightly taken aback by the noisy enthusiasm of the French crowd, but in addition it was a particular highlight of the tour for me because we had Ladyhawke supporting us. Pip is a great songwriter and musician, and her album is one of the best of the year in my opinion. I hadn’t ever seen her play live, so that was a real thrill.
Having barely recovered from that, we were off to Koko (yet again?!) for a TV show, and in between soundcheck and the show went to MTV for a bunch of interviews. This mainly seemed to consist of them trying to get us to be rude about other bands – "What do you think of Dido?", "What do you think of the Stereophonics?", etc etc. Great. The show itself was really fun actually, and a special occasion for me as I managed to play Perfect Symmetry all the way through without messing up the piano riff for the first time ever – it’s incredibly difficult to play and a source of constant irritation/embarrassment to me, so that was a breakthrough! The next day we worked on our Pulp cover and some other bits, then I spent the evening working on the European tour live album.
On Wednesday we did a big Radio 2 show, which was really fun but very different to playing our own shows. It was one of those occasions when we all felt inexplicably nervous, but i spotted a gang of loyal boardies singing away in the front row, which was a nice boost. Then on Friday we went back to Paris (my French is improving) for another TV show. We found ourselves in the midst of a gargantuan production which seemed to be something along the lines of a French X Factor. It was pretty weird to say the least, but actually quite fun. Plus after seeing Britney Spears’ performance I was left feeling that our live show simply doesn’t feature enough circus acts. I think it would be fair to say we didn’t fit in, but it was an education nonetheless. Will be good to get back to proper gigs!
Speaking of which, we’re off to LA on Monday. Been far too long since we played a gig in the States, so we’re very excited about having three in one week, and almost as excited about enjoying a bit of Californian sun, if we have a chance. I think we may fill our one free evening by going in to a studio and recording that Pulp cover, since we enjoyed it so much.
Anyway, that was the week that was. We’ve all got colds, but we’re having a great time. I’m getting the musical equivalent of itchy feet and want to get working on some new songs, so am looking forward to a couple of weeks off over Christmas. That’s about it I think. See you soon!