Amyl and the Sniffers on Liam Gallagher’s helicopter and their friendship with Sleaford Mods

Amyl and the Sniffers on Liam Gallagher’s helicopter and their friendship with Sleaford Mods

Amyl and the Sniffers have opened up about their support slot at Liam Gallagher’s recent Knebworth Park shows and reflected on their friendship with Nottingham post-punk duo Sleaford Mods.

  • READ MORE: Sleaford Mods at Glastonbury 2022: “Keith Urban’s a fan? Fantastic! We want more of that shit”

Singer Amy Taylor, bassist Gus Romer and guitarist Dec Martens spoke to NME backstage at this year’s Glastonbury Festival ahead of their incendiary Sunday evening gig at the John Peel Stage. Asked what they had planned for the show, Marten replied that the four-piece (completed by drummer Bryce Wilson) would “just fuck shit up”, adding: “Same approach every time. Who knows what’s gonna happen?”

In a four-star review of Amyl’s set, NME’s Sam Moore wrote: “A whole array of festival-goers, sporting books, blankets and buckets hats, are here to watch the Melbourne punks on the John Peel Stage (you’d have to suspect that the late DJ would very much approve of such an outfit rocking his stage).”

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The group’s appearance at Glastonbury came almost a month after they joined the bill at Liam Gallagher’s massive return to Knebworth Park, where Oasis famously played to 250,000 people over two days at their zenith of their career in 1996. Gallagher returned to the site as a solo artist on June 3 and 4 this year, playing to 80,000 fans per night with support from Manchester band Pastels, Leicester rockers Kasabian and Scottish singer-songwriter Paolo Nutini as well as Amyl and the Sniffers.

In a four-star review of Gallagher’s gig, NME’s Damian Jones wrote that the latter played a “feral, scorching-hot set that sees gobby frontwoman Amy Taylor mosh and writhe around the stage while her band bulldoze through the likes of ‘Shake You’, ‘Knifey’ and ‘Security’.”

Asked if Amyl, whose brand of punk is often dubbed ‘pub rock’, joined Gallagher for a pint after the show, Taylor laughed: “No, he flew in in a helicopter – he’s not having a pint with us! Love the helicopter… legend, icon move.”

She was also full of praise for the band’s Rough Trade labelmates Sleaford Mods, aka frontman Jason Williamson and producer Andrew Fearn, who performed on the West Holts Stage on Friday at this year’s festival. The singer featured on Mods’ 2021 single ‘Nudge It’, which the duo performed at Glastonbury, with the studio recording of Taylor’s vocals played in her absence. “That was Amy Taylor on guest vocals, everybody,” Williamson told the crowd afterwards. “Give Amy a big clap. She’s really good. She’s in a band called Amyl and the Sniffers, but you know that – they’re massive.”

When they signed to Rough Trade in 2018, Amyl released a statement that read: “It’s sick to sign with Rough Trade, the label has a great history. Plus hopefully we’ll get first pressings of Sleaford Mods’ records.” At the time, Williamson endorsed the group’s authenticity: “At least they look like they’re scum instead of pretending they are…”

Asked why the two bands have so much in common, Taylor told NME: “I was a fan of them before we were mates. I just really love their lyrics; I love the actual music behind the lyrics. I think they’re staunch but their also friendly. I think anyone who isn’t afraid to speak their mind on stuff – I really admire that. And then… I don’t know why we’re mates – they’re just sick cunts, I guess. I just really enjoy their company and respect them heaps.”

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Meanwhile, Sleaford Mods also spoke to NME at Glastonbury about another of their admirers. Country star Keith Urban, who is married to Nicole Kidman, recently revealed to our interviewer Nick Levine that he is “obsessed” the band: “They’re just so raw, pure and unique in the way that Andrew Fearn makes his tracks and the way they gel their thing together… It’s unlike anyone.”

Amyl and the Sniffers at Glastonbury Festival 2022. Credit: Parri Thomas

Told of Urban’s fandom, Williamson replied: “We heard about that. It’s fantastic! We want more of that shit, you know what I mean? All we need now is Sylvester Stallone or someone!” Yet Mods shot down the prospect of a collaboration. “I don’t know; I’m not sure, Williamson said. “No offence, Keith!” Fearn was more direct: “It’s not gonna be happening, is it, really?”

– Check back at NME for the latest news, reviews, interviews photos and more from Glastonbury 2022

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