Go­ing back to their roots

Rock­ers pay homage toTo­ry­glen

Rutherglen Reformer - - Burns Night Celebrations - Jonathan Ged­des

They might be ca­pa­ble of sell­ing out sta­di­ums and are­nas across the world, but rock­ers Sim­ple Minds looked back to their To­ry­glen roots as they launched their new al­bum.

Gui­tarist Char­lie Burchill told the Re­former last week how grow­ing up sur­rounded by mu­sic helped in­spire his own de­sire to be a rock star.

The band re­leased their 17th stu­dio al­bum Walk Be­tween Worlds last week, and will bring the record to the Glas­gow Bar­row­land later this month.

How­ever, it was in To­ry­glen that Char­lie met front­man Jim Kerr as chil­dren, kick-start­ing what would be­come one of Scot­land’s biggest ever bands.

“For Jim and I, we have great memories of To­ry­glen. Our memories are be­cause we knew so many peo­ple there who were into mu­sic. “Nor­mally it was about foot­ball or some­thing, but I knew so many peo­ple who could play guitar – my brother, his friends, my friends and when I think about To­ry­glen it’s al­ways mu­sic. “There were so many peo­ple with dif­fer­ent mu­si­cal tastes that you could get into. Peo­ple had been re­lo­cated there but a lot of folk were happy about this new place and what it of­fered. “So much of any area is about the peo­ple and we were lucky there.” The band went from play­ing lo­cal gigs to be­com­ing one of Scot­land’s hottest acts, be­fore even­tu­ally con­quer­ing the rest of the world in the 1980s, buoyed by mas­sive hits like Don’t You For­get About Me, Alive and Kick­ing and Wa­ter­front.

Their pop­u­lar­ity dipped in the 90s, but re­cent years have seen a re­nais­sance for the band.

“When peo­ple talk about Sim­ple Minds, we feel there’s been five or six dif­fer­ent ver­sions of the band,” says Char­lie.

“So sev­eral years ago we talked about mak­ing sure ev­ery­thing we do was of real qual­ity, and we pushed our­selves a bit harder.

“There has been this new burst of life since then. We’ve never re­ally changed though, we just write songs and try to be a great live band, but it does feel like there’s been a re­newal of sorts re­cently.” Char­lie points to their acous­tic tour and al­bum in 2016 and 2017 as help­ing the cre­ative process this time around. “We did the acous­tic al­bum and al­though that was a dif­fer­ent for­mat, that came in the mid­dle of mak­ing this al­bum, and there were loads of lessons we’d learned from that tour that shaped the record. “It’s hard for me to an­a­lyse the record in full, but a lot of peo­ple have thought it goes back to the sound of New Gold Dream (in 1982) or some­thing like that.” Walk Be­tween Worlds is out now, and Sim­ple Minds play the Bar­row­land on Tues­day, Fe­bru­ary 13.

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