Guy Massey Email Interview - 8 September 2006

Huge thanks to Guy for taking part in this email interview

DELIRIUM : Which of the Manics first asked you to perform live with them and what were your initial thoughts on that?

GM : James first asked me, he had previously mentioned that something was going to happen, and then dropped the bomb shell about 2 months before the Lifeblood tour started. My initial thoughts were - fucking hell, shit can i do this - err I havent played guitar properly for going on 10 years, combined with proper excitement, so mixed feelings, terror being the main one.

DELIRIUM : Did you enjoy performing with the Manics on the Lifeblood/Past Present Future Tours? Was it daunting or did it seem second nature as you have worked so closely with them in the studio?

GM : On reflection I really enjoyed it, it made me feel more alive than I had for a long time, a daunting task that I put a lot of effort in to. The main thing that scared me was fucking up in front of so many people, cos its LOUD and everyone is going to hear it. It wasn't second nature at all cos being a engineer/producer type is quite different to standing in front of 10,000 people playing your guitar, although I know most people didnt notice me!

DELIRIUM : Will you be playing with the Manics again on future tours?

GM : If I'm asked I would I think, yes.

DELIRIUM : Are you currently working with the Manics on their new album or will you have any involvement in their new album?

GM : I'm due to go into the studio with them in November I think, to record tracks.

DELIRIUM : What is your favourite Manics record that you have worked on and why?

GM : The one that sticks in my mind is Everything Must Go because that is the first time we met and I just remember it as a great session - I was assisting Mike Hedges and Ian Grimble and I remember jumping around the room when Design was mixed thinking it was fucking top.

DELIRIUM : Is there one Manics record you wish you had worked on?

GM : The Holy Bible - I wasnt too familiar with it until a couple of years ago, I think it's one of the most intense collection of tracks ever recorded.

DELIRIUM : You worked with James on his solo record, how different was that to working with the Manics and have you worked on any of Nicky's solo stuff?

GM : I suppose it was different cos it was just James and myself for the most part on the tracks we worked on. So it was quite relaxed, James would come in sometimes with songs fully formed and other times we would work a song from scratch and try lots of different approaches. With something like Secret Society, the band I think had everything pre planned and it was recorded and mixed in a day. I haven't worked on any of Wire's stuff but I am going to buy the album this week!

DELIRIUM : What do you think of the idea of James and Nicky's solo careers and do you think it will strengthen the Manics as a band?

GM : I think that if they both felt the need to do the solo stuff then great, the band were having a break anyway, so why not. I can't speak for Nickys album cos I havent heard it yet, but I think James has made a really strong album. I think the fact that they have worked away from each other for a while, may have increased the desire to work together again, and all reports on the new stuff is that it's stonking.

DELIRIUM : Have you ever denied being Guy Massey when accosted by drunken Manics fans?

GM : Embarrasingly, yes BUT ONLY ONCE, when the CIA gig was cancelled, sorry to whoever it was, I'm a wallflower really!

DELIRIUM : If you had to choose one, would you rather be in James's C Street Band, or Nicky's Secret Society Band?

GM : I havent heard Nicks yet so cant really answer that question fairly.

DELIRIUM : At Delirium, we think "Still A Long Way To Go" should have been a Manics track, it's as epic as Design For Life, do you agree?

GM : For me it's a contender for best track on James' album, and reckon it should be a single.

DELIRIUM : What other bands are you working with at the moment?

GM : Am in Rockfield at moment with a new band called Air Traffic - which is going really well. We have been here for 5 weeks with 4 to go, so quite busy.

DELIRIUM : Are you happier at the mixing desk or on stage?

GM : Mixing desk, it's less scary.

DELIRIUM : And now for Delirium's standard question, tell us a secret about James, Sean and Nicky?

GM : I'll get back to you on this one, cos I honestly don't know any!