With Keane now having played the first three shows of the ‘Under The Iron Sea’ campaign, we called up keyboard king Tim Rice-Oxley on Friday afternoon to find out what he’s made of the band’s first week back on the road. Q. Hi Tim. How’s it going? A. Great, thanks. It’s been quite nerve-wracking playing the new songs but the shows this week in Madrid and Lisbon went really well, which is a relief. It’s nice playing these small, sweaty shows – you can really see the audience. The worry was that they’d only respond to the songs that they already knew, but they’ve been responding really well to the new ones too. Q. Has it been easy to adjust back to the touring lifestyle? A. Well it’s early days, but we seem to have clicked back into it pretty easily. It’s a bit different to when we began touring the first album, ‘cos then we’d be staying in a cheap hotel on the outskirts of a British city. This time we’re getting to stay in great places in beautiful cities like Madrid and Lisbon. The hotel in Lisbon was just beautiful, with this amazing outdoor pool – I was nipping for a swim between interviews! Q. How are the interviews going? A. Yeah, really good. Everyone seems excited and intrigued by the new album and the journey we went on to make it. We’re very pleased with this record, so it’s actually been really nice for us to be able to talk about it. Q. You’ve said Keane’s inter-band relationships became quite strained touring the last album and making this one. Presumably you’re getting asked about that a lot. A. Yes. It is quite hard to talk about, but in a way I like that. It can be very boring if you’re just talking about things that are easy and nice and you’re churning out the same old answers. I’m still trying to make sense of this album and doing these interviews actually helps with that. Yes, in a way it is more difficult talking about these things, but at the same time it makes the interviews more interesting and enjoyable. Plus, we’ve been very honest and open about everything on the new album, so it’s not like we’ve got anything to hide. Q. What are your plans for the next couple of weeks? A. Well, we’re in Dundee for a Radio 1 thing on Sunday and then we go to Germany, but beyond that I don’t really know! This is my new approach, only to know what we’re doing for the next 48 hours. It seems to work really well – this way you actually feel quite excited to see what’s coming next! Q. Are you worried about the same problems cropping up between you guys again? A. In some ways, yeah. But we’re aware of the dangers now and it won’t be like last time where we didn’t make the effort with each other – this time we’ll try make it fun and try not to behave like idiots! The response we’re getting to the album is definitely exciting all of us. I think any band that’s sold a lot of records has to be prepared for a backlash and it can really weigh you down if people are against you. But so far the reaction has been phenomenal. People seem genuinely excited about the leap we’ve tried to make with this album and it means quite a lot to know that. These are exciting times for us.