So, Gomez played its first show in 1996?
That’s right. We played a small club in Leeds, which is in the north of England.
Within two years of playing your first shows Gomez won a Mercury prize. Was this early success a help or hindrance?
I can’t really fault it. It was a huge stamp of approval but at the same time it put a lot of extra emphasis on our second album. We were scrutinised a lot more because of it. But obviously it was a great, great thing to win.
Have you been suprised that your early success in the UK has maybe wavered a little in recent years?
I think its just indicative of the business really. The wonderful world of digital music has obviously had consequences for the record sales industry. We were also experiencing some problems at the time with our label in England, Hut Records and Virgin, where the shit really hit the fan.
Since 2006 you’ve been with ATO records in the US, what’s it like being on Dave Matthews’ label?
It’s been a good relationship. Dave’s just one of the owners, so I’m not sure how much he’s had to actually do with us on a personal level. But we’ve always been able to do what we wanted. Its rare to have that kind of freedom.
So you wouldn’t say he’s directly influenced your subsequent success in the US Market?
The label definitely helped us in terms of where we recorded and how we recorded and that kind of side of things. We’ve definitely reactivated our careers in the US, so yeah it’s good having them behind us.
Your last album was made in quite a unique way. Is it hard to make an album from different corners of the world?
Actually for all the distance involved there was a lot of positivity that came out of it, in that you can really demonstrate your ideas better. There were frustrations of course but in the long run it worked out well.
How do you think the album stacks up against Gomez’s previous efforts?
It’s very hard to compare things, rank them in terms of best to worst or whatever. I think we definitely achieved what we set out too with that album. Which I guess at the end of the day is the most important thing.
Gomez are touring Australia in October. Any tips for surviving the trip?
I don’t know, you’ve just got to sort of accept the fact that you’re going to be on a plane for two days. Maybe have a sleep pre-show.
You’re starting the tour in Darwin. Have you played in the Northern Territory before?
We have done I think once, I think in 2006 we did a show. I can’t really remember where – a small festival I think.
Any time off in between shows?
I think we might have a little time in Melbourne and we might have a little time around the Byron Bay area.
Any particularly touristy things planned for your down time?
It’s always good to cuddle a koala if you can get near one. Hopefully we can get to the ocean and see some strange animals, yeah, I think if we manage that everyone will be pretty happy. We also really like to see some vineyards when we’re in Australia. Drink some nice wine, eat some nice food, that sort of thing.
Anything outlandish on your rider?
Apart from the coke and the women (laughs). I think we’re pretty regular. You wouldn’t walk into our dressing room and be blown away; maybe some nice snacks, some nice booze. Nothing too Rolling Stones.
Do you still have as much fun playing in 2012 as you did when the band started?
There are songs we used to struggle through in the early days that we can play now with our hands behind our back. The response we get is always very good touring, and it’s still good fun.
Catch Gomez in Darwin (Oct 10), Cairns (Oct 11) Townsville (Oct 12) Brisbane (Oct 14), Sydney (Oct 19), and Melbourne (Oct 21/22) gomeztheband.com