Published Apr 01, 2005Based out of Leeds, Kaiser Chiefs are essentially and unabashedly British in the truest sense. From their Small Faces hairdos to their beguiling pop savvy, this band is not afraid to wear their influences to their advantage. The feisty five-piece tap into everything from the Specials and Madness brand of second wave ska, the arty new wave of XTC and Squeeze and most obvious, the unfairly damned Britpop phenomena of the mid-90s. Employment, their debut album, is a perfect and astute pop record that cuts right to the chase and lures you in from the trembling synth of "Everyday I Love You Less and Less. From there on in Kaiser Chiefs keep the thrill ride bustling, throwing everything from their rowdy ska-tinged anthemic hit "I Predict A Riot to the Supergrass-heavy "Na Na Na Na Naa at the listener. Even when they bring down the tempo for a bit, like on recent single "Oh My God, they manage to take the placid XTC-ish verse and inject it with a punk fervour in the chorus. They may have "Britpop Revival written all over their faces, but if youre putting money on a band to find Franz Ferdinand-sized success this year, heres your best bet.
What kind of employment did you have before the band? Singer Ricky Wilson: I was a teacher. I wouldnt recommend it because no one gives a shit. You go there in the morning and the rest of the teachers have been there for ten years and they dont care. And kids are the scariest people in society because you cant hit them back.
Did any event inspire "I Predict A Riot? Drummer Nick Hodgson: It came from my mum and dads piano. I was playing this spooky thing and had these spooky words about city centres in Britain. They have programs on TV called Booze Britain and they document nights out. Ricky: Its about those guys who stand outside clubs at two in the morning and all they want to do is land their fists on a nose; dont care who as long as they can take out all of that sexual frustration they dont get to use because no one will take them home.
A couple of the songs are about an ex-girlfriend have you faced any of the repercussions yet? Ricky: Not yet. Ive been on tour and out of the country. Im dreading going back. Shell know. She goes on the Internet and finds pictures of girls sitting on my knee and sends them to my current girlfriend saying, "A leopard never changes its spots. What kind of a bitch does that? (Universal)