Tom answers your questions 26 August 2006

Mr Chaplin tackles your ‘Ask Keane’ queries

A couple of weeks ago, when the band were in the Far East, Tom emailed us the answers to a bunch of the questions that you folks had been sending in via the ‘Ask Keane’ section of the Ezine. So, here they are…

“What is your favourite type of cheese?”
Tom replies: I eat an unhealthy amount of stilton at Christmas. Otherwise I try to avoid cheese because it’s so good and yet so bad…

“Tom what is it like being the youngest in the band, Do Tim and Rich keep you in charge, and how much do they protect you etc etc?”
Tom replies: I work hard to remind them that I’m the youngest – generally by making puerile jokes and repeatedly telling them that they’re both now in their thirties and well past their prime. I’m surprised they still put up with me to be honest – it’s a hard job!

“I wanted to ask Tom how he feels before a gig. Are you nervous or relaxed? I’m 15 and i’m a vocalist too but everytime I perform I get REALLY bad nerves!!! How do you get yourself relaxed?”
Tom replies: A healthy amount of nerves is good. Being physically prepared is the most important thing… lots of warming up both voice and body, otherwise the nerves will overtake you. Also, I tend to focus on one or two faces in the crowd and sing very personally to them.

“Why are you called Keane?”
Lots of people
Tom replies: “Good journalists” always seem to get this wrong, saying that we were named after a nanny or a matron at school or some such bollocks. It actually came from a friend of my mum’s who was called Cherry Keane – we all knew her when we were kids and so it has a resonance for us as very old friends.

“If I were to visit Keane’s home town of Battle, what would you recommend I see while I’m there?”
Tom replies: Go and see the Abbey – it’s the cultural experience that will then allow you to eat heartily at The Pilgrim’s Platter. Stay down the road at The Powdermills Hotel and then the next day go for a nice trip round Bodiam Castle.

“Hello boys. What is your ideal holiday? Sun-bathing by the sea, sightseeing, walking on mountains? What do you like? :o)”
Tom replies: I can’t get on with beaches – I’m not good with sunburn and sand in every orifice. I get bored on holiday without activities – skiing or my recent adventure in New Zealand were both great. That said, romantic breaks in Britain (Scotland, Yorkshire, Cornwall) are all brilliant.

“I hope I haven’t missed something too obvious, but… can you explain why ‘Under The Iron Sea’ seems to be divided into two sections? The artwork seems to indicate this with the songs printed in different colors, and there is an instrumental break right at the same point. Thanks.”
Mike Bradford
Tom replies: When we came up with the tracklisting we felt the album fell into two parts. The first half is a very blatant insight into a lot of our darkest thoughts, experiences and fears. The second half is introduced by the atmospherics of ‘The Iron Sea’ before going into a more magical fairytale world gone wrong. We thought it would be good to have it like an old vinyl record with two sides in a literal and artistic sense.

“Dear, sweet Tom – Were you embarrassed when your pants ripped at the Chicago show (June 27) or was it no biggie?”
Tom replies: A reminder never to wear white underwear again. Still, I think the front row were impressed with my stage presence. Wink wink.

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