Dave Eringa Email Interview - 28 January 2004
Huge thanks to Dave for taking part in this email interview
DELIRIUM : What is the track you have worked on for the Manics that you are most proud of and why?
DE : It'd have to be "Tolerate" coz it was the first No1 which was SO exciting, but also because it was such a good example of team work. Absolutely everyone contributed equally to that track, & it felt like such a natural process. It was actually slated as a b side, & when we started recording it we were just warming up for "Be Natural" which everyone had thought was going to be the important track of the session. We just did it really quickly & it was only when the record company came down that everyone kind of heard it with different ears & realised how good it was. I like the way it sounds quite modern & almost futuristic, but the gear we used to record it was all available in 1975! I also love "Motown Junk" when I was just the tea boy, but they were the best band I ever made the tea for, & it all seemed so exciting & new, & I am very proud of the guitar sound on "No Surface All Feeling", which is a song I adore & I wouldn't want to forget "La Tristessa" either!!!
DELIRIUM : Did you enjoy being their live keyboardist and what was the best gig you played with them?
DE : I did enjoy it enormously, but I was also kind of glad when it reached its natural conclusion. I am in no way being self depreciating when I say I am no great shakes on the keyboards, & in fact I was only a little bit better on the organ than Richey was on the guitar!!! I was just there to make a bit more noise, & I was cheap!!! Its a bit weird being an extra musician in a band, your're not in the band, & you're not in the crew either, so you 're sort of in no mans land - I have to say Nick Naysmith does it so much better than I was ever capable of both musically & in terms of demeanour!!! Having said all that I was only 21 & it seemed to me I was living out all my rock'n'roll dreams & the gigs were amazing. There were so many i enjoyed, some of the Japanese shows were amazing, but I think the best one was the second last one I played with them at Brixton Academy. It just seemed like such a huge place at the time, and it was a dream come true for me having seen so many big bands there over the years. From what I can remember the gig was really good too, and I didn't fuck up too much!!
DELIRIUM : What is your favourite Manics single and album and why?
DE : Fave single is a toss up between "Faster" & "Design". "Faster" is just so individual & molten & angry I fucking love it, and of course "Design" never fails to give me a shiver to this day. What a perfect piece of songwriting - lyric & melody in perfect harmony - James says the music came to him in just 20 minutes & he heard it all with all the string parts & everything right from the begining. Songs like that don't come along very often! Fave album obviously has to be between "Holy Bible" & "Everything Must Go". They're both perfect in their own way - "The Holy Bible" is surely the most artistically intact British album of the 90's. They didn't sacrifice one syllable of the words to increase intelligability, the sounds are so caustic & individual & the whole thing is such a perfect statement of their mindsets at the time. (Which is pretty frightening if you think about it!). I love the sequencing as well, just as it all seems to be getting too much you get "This Is Yesterday" which is such a beautiful melancholy little track, it defuses all the horror a little bit! And then what can I say about "Everything Must Go" that hasn't already been said. Simply one of the best albums ever in my humble (slightly biased!) opinion. It was just the most perfect & dignified response to all the tragedy that anyone could have imagined - just beautiful!
DELIRIUM : What was the most disagreement you had with the band (usually more specifically James) over the 'feel' of a track?
DE : James is an immensely talented songwriter, & he almost always knows exactly how he wants the music to sound right from the off, so the job of producing the Manics becomes more one of interpretation - trying to hear how he hears it in his head & working out how to make that happen, so on the whole there haven't been too many disagreements. When they do come however they can be rather heated!! There were a few on "Know Your Eneny" where they just wanted everything so rough, but as you can imagine, they always win in the end anyway.
DELIRIUM : Did Nicky ever really wear a dress while recording or is James just a big liar?!
DE : James is definitely a big liar!!
DELIRIUM : How different is it working with the Manics when compared to working with other bands such as Idlewild etc?
DE : Every band is different, and the job changes each time, but as I said the Manics have a very clear idea of what they want to get right from the start, & that helps enormously. With other bands I might decide the direction of a track more often, but like I say its always different. Idlewild also have a very clear idea of how they want things, and a very good sense of who they want to be.
DELIRIUM : What recording session or gig did you have the most fun with the band and why?
DE : Recording "Know Your Enemy" in Spain was just fantastic. The studio was nestled in the mountains near Porto Benus, & it was the most beautiful location. We still worked really hard 14 hour days, but at 4 in the afternoon we would take 45mins pool time, & the difference that short time made to your mindspace was incredible. Dinner was also a big event every night & the food was fantastic, and then when we finished work each night at about 2am, me, James, & Nick Naysmith would sit down & work our way through "The Sopranos" series 1 box set. It was idyllic!
DELIRIUM : Tell us something we don't know about James?
DE : When he gets near a swimming pool he regresses to a mental age of 10!!
DELIRIUM : Tell us something we don't know about Sean?
DE :He has 2 sausage dogs!
DELIRIUM : Tell us something we don't know about Nicky?
DE : His "Know your Enemy" haircut he did himself with Nicky Clarke clippers!!
DELIRIUM : What's your favourite band you have produced other than the Manics?
DE : Unfair question!!! I Love them all!
DELIRIUM : What does Dave Eringa Have planned for the rest of 2004?
DE : I have a fantastic album by a band called South coming out soon that I think is just incredible (the album is called "With the Tides"), theres a bit more Idlewild (though not the whole album this time I think), which is shaping up very nicely, & next week I'm doing a track with Ash for the soundtrack of a film, which I am very excited about.