12th January 2022



Q: If I didn’t come from Leicester or any of the Midlands counties, I’m pretty sure I’d have to look up Swadlincote on a map. In a town of just 30,000, I’m impressed that you found enough like-minded people there to form a band at all: how did it all come together?


M: Well I’ve been in loads of bands before this like you do but originally it started off and I got a bit disillusioned with it all because like you say it was hard finding band members around me. At one time I had band members living in London, some in Hull, Bradford and we’d have to do block rehearsals where we would get together for a week and nail it down like that but it was just a nightmare so I started recording stuff on my own but then I thought I had to get a proper band again. I’m into making beats and doing electronic stuff but it’s nothing like having a set of bollocks behind the drums and feeling the bass drum hitting your legs. It took me ages though. There was a geezer I used to go and see playing in bands named Oggy when I was about thirteen or fourteen and he had just built a studio at his house so when we recorded in there, I roped him in on bass. My ex-girlfriend who is now the singer is Kerry Ann was really shy and didn’t really want to do the gig but was ok to do the recording and I eventually talked her into being in the band. So, yeah, it was hard work getting a lot of like-minded people together and there were a lot of compromises on influences and stuff like that. I didn’t find people who were into stuff like me but I think that worked best in the end because they I bringing something that I probably wouldn’t have got if everyone was into the same stuff.


Q: Care to explain the name?


M: I’ve always liked the term philharmonic. People think it means orchestra but it’s filhahr-lover-monik - lover of music – so I thought yeah I like that. Deadtime is killing time and ‘Thee’ is just because there are too many ‘The’ bands. I used to like Thee Hypnotics as well.


Music and Lyrics


Q: These days I prefer two types of bands musically. Either ones that cannot be categorised because they play so many genres or ones that have one genre, Rock, Pop, Punk, etc. As soon as someone says ‘We are a Death Metal Power Prog band’ I lose the will to live let alone listen to them. Your band is of the former; cannot be categorised…


M: We are but it goes against the record companies though because they just want to pigeonhole you and sell you in a certain way. When I’ve had meetings with record companies, they’ve said too me ‘You have that song Protected which is a bit Ska, give me ten more songs like that’. This was Mercury records and the same guy who signed Amy Winehouse and I said ‘I don’t work like that mate – I’m not Status Quo’.


Q: It’s the way the business is now.


M: It is and like you say, there must be thirty sub-genres of Death Metal these days


Q: Influences then, who are your musical influences?


M: Oh there are so many. I know you shouldn’t listen to the same music as your Mam but me Mam did like some good stuff. She liked some shit as well (laughs) but early Rod Stewart with Ronnie Wood, The Faces, I liked a bit of that. John Lennon…the first time I heard Working Class Hero…The Small Faces as well. Then I think the first record I bought myself when I was a little kid was probably Adam and the Ants; I got into Metal when I was about ten or eleven, Guns ‘n’ Roses and all that but as for influences that have stuck with me and are with me now, Velvet Underground, MC5, The Stooges…


Q: But those are even pre-Rod Stewart and a very eclectic mix.


M: That’s it, yeah. I always thought I fucking hated Country and Western but I had never heard the proper stuff like Hank Williams. I just like good songs. I also got into electronic music by going to raves so that influenced me a little bit. Being a musician, I just wanted to know how it worked so I got into building beats with samples and we do use a little bit of that in Deadtime for something a bit different. I just didn’t want to be like anyone else really.


Q: How about any lyrical influences either songwriters or literature? Youi mentioned Working Class Hero which is a very simple G and Am song so presumably it was the lyrics that got you there.


M: Definitely. Even at an early age I got the sentiment of it and when you get older it means more. It’s like a lot of Dylan’s songs in that when you get older, they have a different meaning to you. Lyrically, I like a lot of Hip-Hop because I think a lot of Rock music, especially over the last twenty years seem to be the lowest common denominator of lyrics, almost a means to an end for a band. You know, put any old shit down so we can get the record done and go on tour. I write all the music and lyrics for Deadtime but lyrics I am very particular about and try not to waste words.




Q: Your music and lyrics combined paint a bleak picture of the UK (and I’m going to play Devil’s Advocate a bit here – I side with you what I’ve heard), is it really as bad as all that?


M: I think it’s getting worse Glenn to be honest. (laughs) The music and lyrics can be a cathartic thing as well, me being in the band and you as a listener. I think that can be an escape for people.


Q: There’s a lot of social commentary and anger in your songs and your videos are almost mini-Ken Loach films…


M: I like that!


Q: …do those storyboards come from witnessing things?


M: Yeah. I don’t try and get too literal with the lyrics but the places we filmed all pretty much mean something too me. The kids in the videos, I know their parents and the last video, Hardlines, I got quite emotional watching it back because I know the background those kids are from and how much confidence it’s given them doing something like that. They are opportunities kids like that wouldn’t usually have because they are either laughed at or they haven’t got the resources. It became a little organic community project really without trying.


Q: I was your age in the Thatcher years and lived through all that mess but it did get better - for a while at least.


M: I was a little kid during the Miner’s Strike so I remember it really well. Me Mam worked at the canteen in the pit, before me Dad fucked off, he worked in the pit and the pit was only just down the road from us so I saw a lot of stuff with the Met coppers so I was always going to militant really, seeing all that.


Q: Are you optimistic or pessimistic about the future of Britain?


M: I’m always optimistic! I like to think some of the songs have got that bit of hope in them as well. I’m just telling what it is really and the experiences I’ve had. The Metal lyrics we talked about earlier, the dungeons and dragons or the Iron Maiden stuff, I can’t go into a book and write about it, I have to feel an emotional connection with it.

Q: Just to clarify though before we move on; you’re not preaching are you?


M: Oh no definitely not.


Q: Just observing. James Joyce not Bono.


M: Please don’t use Bono in the same sentence. (laughs) You know, it’s a shame about Bono really because U2 did do some great songs back in the day but he just thought he was Jesus didn’t he?


Q: Yeah. The crucial point for me was when he stepped off the stage at Live Aid into the crowd trying to grab the headlines and I watched it thinking ‘For fuck’s sake Bono, this isn’t about you’.

M: Exactly but he made it about him didn’t he? I spent a bit of time in Dublin and everybody in Dublin hates him and usually, the Irish, anything Irish and they are on it aren’t they.


Q: They are.


M: I think that says a lot about the chap. (laughs)


Q: I think you’re right. A slight aside here but I’d like to hear your opinion on this. Elvis Costello announced today that he won’t be singing Oliver’s Army anymore as it has the lyric ‘One more widow, one less white nigger’ in it. The Rolling Stones have also said they will not be performing Brown Sugar for a similar reason. What’s your take on all this retrospective self-censorship?

M: I hate it. It’s the same with stand-up comedy as well and I think we’ve had a reverse. The Left Wing used to stand up for freedom of speech and now it seems like the Left are shutting people down with the ‘Cancel Culture’ thing, you can’t say this and you can’t say that and nine times out of ten, the people who are getting offended by it are the people it don’t affect! It’s like a lot of people who go to university who haven’t got their own kind of thing or opinions so they’ll jump on racism, transgender things and they are the ones getting offended. The actual people have usually got a sense of humour about it. It’s like anything in your own life, we have gallows humour about everything don’t we.


Q: We do and the British are famous for it.


M: Exactly but there are people now who are professionals at being offended by something, getting online straight away and I find if I put something online, someone will come on and say ‘Oh what are you trying to say?’. They are trying to find something that isn’t there.


Q: Same here. I’ve been in Facebook jail a couple of times for writing what I thought was innocent enough.


M: And me. I think it’s a bit of a Badge of Honour now though.

Q: It is!


M: And the thing is that most people agree with you.


The Future


Q: They do. Well, whatever the future of Britain I think Thee Deadtime Philharmonic have a good future ahead of them once we get this pandemic debacle over and done with. What’s the plans for 2022?


M: I have about 26 songs on the go that I am working on so I’ll get them finished off and I also have two songs recorded and I just want to get out there gigging again but everything is so up and down with the covid stuff. We should have been doing a European tour before the first lockdown so between Brexit and covid, it’s just fucked us over.


Q: You said 26 songs, a very definite number. You actually have 26?


M: Yeah!


Q: So the next album will be a double?

M: No because a lot of them won’t make it. I always do more than I need to as I am a king of procrastinating. I can sit for days and do nothing but when I actually do it, I don’t stop for days. I’m about due now to have a writing spree so I’ll finish some of these songs off but what I end up doing is when I’m trying to finish and having a little tinkle, I then think ‘Oh that sounds good’ and then start something new but at least I’m not short of material.


Q: Murdoch. Good to talk to you and thanks for doing the interview.


M: Really appreciate it mate thank you. Cheers Glenn!


Thee Deadtime Philharmonic



Q: もし私がレスターやミッドランド地方の出身でなかったら、地図でスウェドリンコートを調べなければならないと思います。たった3万人の町で、よくバンドを結成できるほど同じ志を持つ人たちが集まったものだと思います。









Q: 最近、私は音楽的に2種類のバンドを好みます。たくさんのジャンルを融合したもので、カテゴライズできないものか、ロック、ポップ、パンクなど、ひとつのジャンルをやっているものです。「デスメタル・パワープログレのバンドです」と言われた途端、聴くどころか生きる気力を失います。あなたのバンドは前者で、カテゴライズされない・・・






Q: 影響を受けた人、音楽的に影響を受けた人は誰ですか?



Q: しかし、それらはロッド・スチュワート以前のものですし、いろいろ混じってますよね。



Q: 作詞で影響を受けたソングライターや文学作品はありますか?「Working Class Hero」は非常にシンプルなGとAmの曲なので、おそらく歌詞に影響されたのだと思いますが。




Q: あなたの音楽と歌詞を合わせると、イギリスの暗い絵が描かれますが(ここで少し悪魔の代弁者を演じるつもりだ-私が聞いたことはリスナーの立場として、だ)、本当にそれほど悪いのでしょうか?



Q: あなたの曲には社会的なコメントや怒りの表現が多く、ビデオはまるでケン・ローチの短編映画のようですが・・・







Q: 私はサッチャー政権時代にあなたの年齢で、あの混乱期を生き抜きました。


















Q:おっしゃる通りだと思います。ここで少し余談ですが、ご意見を伺いたいと思うのですが、エルヴィス・コステロは今日、「Oliver's Army」には「One more widow, one less white nigger」という歌詞があるため、もう歌わないと発表したそうです。ローリング・ストーンズも同様の理由でBrown Sugarを演奏しないと言っています。このような回顧的な自己検閲について、あなたはどのようにお考えですか?









Q: ですよね!















Thee Deadtime Philharmonic.jpg