Why did you decide to play Isle of Wight?
"We owe it to them! Last time we played years ago, we weren't very good. We were halfway through recording Lifeblood, were were really under prepared and we wanted to do it because it's such a legendary festival but we came in really under cooked. Everything was great except us, so this feels like a good chance to pay back the faith. I remember coming over the ferry and being really excited about watching The Who. We watched them from the side of the stage and I remember thinking, next time we come back, we want to be more like The Who"
Who are you looking forward to seeing?
"Foo Fighters new record sounds great so I'd like to see them. Apparently it's all recorded on analogue tapeand I'm not a complete aficiando of the band or anything but I do think it sounds like a stunning record. Having been around and played festivals when Nirvana were playing, it's nice to feel that there's still a band trying to do as much as we are really. Obviously Iggy is a great entertainer too. We're in good company on the veterans front! It's presented in a thoughtful way at Isle of Wight hough, there's nothing forced about it. PiL are on before us too and to be headlining over them just doesn't feel right. Johnny is just one of my all time heroes and he'll probably come on stage and say he deserves to be headlining anyway! I agree with him - I really admire him"
Who would feature on your fantasy festival line up?
"McCarthy are probably my favourite band of all time and they've never got any credit at all so I'd have to say them. Obviously, The Clash and Public Enemy to add a bit of serious polemic to it all. I'd like to see the original Bunnymen because Pete was one of the most amazing rock n' roll drummers ever. And then maybe Lloyd Cole and The Commotions playing 'Rattlesnakes'. I have to admit, I just find it difficult to take in an immense amount of music. I wouldn't want to go and see myself if I'd seen 20 other bands"
What can we expect from your set?
"We've been rehearsing a lot of old stuff recently like 'Suicide Alley', which we haven't played live for about 22 years, and 'Life Becoming A Landslide'. When you get to a festival set, you're there to entertain peopleand we've learnt to try and please everyone. We will chuck in a couple of those old songs though but we also genuinely love the new record and we're not shying away from the fact that it is made for festivals"
What's next for you after the festival season?
"We've got our own shows and there'll be quite a lot of messing around on the next record. That's the joy of having your own studio - it's like an allotment for musicians really. It's where men gather to pretend they're doing stuff"