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Drunken discussions and weird electro with Frank Turner

Frank Turners upcoming album 'Positive Songs For Negative People' promises to be his most raw edged and heartfelt yet: we linked up for a swift chat ahead of the much anticipated release.

Ben Smith

Date published: 15th Jul 2015

Image: Frank Turner

A sixth album can often signify the drowning out of an artist, but it's apparent with Frank Turner and the incoming Positive Songs For Negative People that he's only just getting started; oh and CM Punk also appears on the music video for single 'The Next Storm' - because that's just what Frank Turner does. 

Produced by Butch Walker, the album was allegedly recorded in nine days with his band The Sleeping Souls, a back-to-basics approach that's bound to make for some interesting turns when the album finally hits our playlists.

That way of producing is apparent from the get-go in single 'Get Better', it's raw to the core and Turner's never sounded so sincere; he's going out all guns blazing with this album, and we can't wait to get our hands on the full length. 

With a huge fan base hooked on all that is Frank Turner, it's commendable that he almost runs himself into the ground to satisfy their demand, not to mention releasing his first book 'The Road Beneath My Feet' this year and playing in side-project Mongol Horde.

In between songs at SXSW earlier this year he said, "I've played too many shows, drank too many shitty beers, got tattooed, I didn't sleep enough", he works hard, plays hard and shows no signs of stopping with a UK tour imminent.   

A secret solo set at Glastonbury was soon followed by a barnstorming performance on The Other Stage, giving festival revellers plenty to look forward to at Reading and Leeds Festival when he headlines the Festival Republic Stage in August. To shed more light on Positive Songs For Negative People ahead of its August 7th release date, we caught up with Frank for a chat and here's what he had to say.  

Can you shed more light on the album title 'Positive Songs For Negative People', is that particularly inspired by anything or anyone? 

The title came from a late night drunken discussion with a close friend. We were actually talking about the entirety of my output as a solo artist, at some point that phrase slipped out, and it seemed like an apt summation of my musical intentions.

I read about your objections to Taylor Swift appearing on the album - why was that? 

That's clickbait headlining, it's silly to describe it as an "objection". The idea was very briefly floated and I said no. That's all. It wouldn't have been appropriate for the song or the album as a whole.

We must mention your incredible music video with CM Punk, how did that come about? 

We asked him to appear, and he said yes, not much more complicated than that. Well, the logistics of organising a video shoot in Chicago were pretty trying for my awesome team, but he's a nice guy and a fan, so it worked out.

Before settling on Butch Walker, you went chopped and changed producers, what was it about Butch that felt right to produce the album? 

I was aware of Butch as a songwriter and performer, and wasn't aware that he also did production work. I was at something of a dead end as far as producers go, having a hard time finding someone who I felt understood my intentions for the songs.

In the end I sent him an email, something of a hail-mary pass, and it worked out. We met up to discuss records and just got on like a house on fire, I felt like he totally got what I was trying to achieve with this record.

You head off on a tour of the UK in the coming months, what are you most looking forward to about that? 

I love touring and UK shows have a certain energy to them, it feels like a homecoming, because it literally is.

We've had Million Dead, we've got Frank Turner, if you could perhaps head off on another music direction, what would that be and would you ever actually consider it?  

I have a big soft spot in my taste for progressive and weird electro stuff, like Warp Records and so on. So maybe something in that direction, though I suspect I lack the technical skills to pull it off on my own.

Thanks Frank, we can't wait to hear the album. 

'Positive Songs For Negative People' is released Friday 7th August via Xtra Mile Recordings and Polydor Records. 

Frank heads off on tour in November, follow this link to find a date near you.


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