What’s the next best thing to doing a face-to-face interview with Nicky Wire of the Manics? Why, having Nicky fill in a written questionnaire of course! At the Manics ‘warm up to Reading’ gig the night before their main stage appearance at the Reading Festival on August 23rd, I travelled to Newport to see the Manics at the much more intimate Newport Centre. Upon the band’s arrival, I handed Nicky an envelope with a questionnaire in it. Six days later and the questionnaire plonked through my letterbox, gloriously filled in by the man himself.
Bearing in mind that written questionnaires are the perfect excuse for one word answers, read below...
It’s been a totally amazing year for the Manics. Without meaning to be greedy, and of course besides the obvious, is there anything you’d wish for that you didn’t achieve, do or obtain in ‘96/’97.
I don’t think about it.
On May 24th you played your biggest headline gig to date at the Nynex Arena. Which is best - playing big sold out venues where any old Joe Bloggs may attend (you know, trendy kids who may have only heard ‘A Design For Life, and the like) or small intimate clubs/halls where you know that everyone in the audience is a loyal fan and totally 100% into the band?
I much prefer big venues. At small ones we miss Richey more. At big ones you can lose yourself.
I loved the tiara at the Nynex. Very glamorous! Is there anything you wouldn’t wear on stage? What other accessories are you open to wearing on stage? I know fans must give you all sorts - give me some ideas of cool things you’d love to receive!
Cat masks, more tiaras, glitter, make up.
What do you think of all the Manics fanzines that are around and continually springing up?
I think they’re very positive and I read them all.
Why don’t you have an official fan club?
Because they are usually crap.
What do you think of the Manics books that have been released - Paula Shutkever’s ‘Design For Living’ and now Nick Wise’s biog?
All rubbish - but some good pictures.
Out of the seven wonders of the world, which is the most wonderful?
Of the seven deadly sins, which are you most guilty of?
Knowing that you are not really ‘Rock’, what do you think of rock fans like myself that are into the band? How does it feel knowing that all different types of people in all walks of life into all different types of music love the Manics?
It’s what we’ve always been about.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Go to bed as often as you can.
As we approach the new millennium and with the new Labour government, what changes would you like to see happening in Great Britain?
Life sentences for rapists, more money for schools & NHS.
How much material has been written for the next album so far? And are there any recently written ones that you can’t wait for people to hear?
14 new songs.
Will the new album consist of entirely new material? Any plan on using any other Richey lyrics?
Yes - No.
If you could ask a wise person a smart question, what would you ask them?