Moons back for Christmas gig in Northampton

Andy Crofts says the new album will have a melodic, traditional Moons sound
Andy Crofts says the new album will have a melodic, traditional Moons sound

Moons main man Andy Crofts is back in town this month to headline the Roadmender with his band before returning in April when Paul Weller headlines Royal & Derngate.

It’s been a busy 2016 for Crofts who has been working on Weller’s new album with Moons drummer Ben Gordelier.

Northampton is a beautiful place, says Moons frontman Andy Crofts

Northampton is a beautiful place, says Moons frontman Andy Crofts

“It’s been a good year,” he explains. “Busy. Work on the Weller album is all done now, I’ve been in the studio trying to get on with the new Moons album, there’s been the Songbook Collective album and tours.

“The new Moons album is about 80 per cent done. It’s not mixed yet and there still some parts to add to some songs.

“There’s a few I wrote but I’m just not feeling so they’ll go in the bin or end up as bonus material.

“I don't want to waste time, I hate taking time off for albums.

“If I had my way, I'd release an album every year, but it's just not possible. Hopefully this one will be out by the end of summer.”

Crofts reveals the fourth Moons album takes elements of all three and despite an initial idea of heading in a more electronic and synthesised direction, the record will have a melodic, traditional Moons sound.

“The new LP moves forward in some ways,” he explains. “It’s good quality tunes and I think that's lacking at the moment.”

The Moons have been debuting Hanging Around on their December tour which may end up on the new record.

“The rest of the band want it on there but I’m not sure” Crofts explains. “It's quite a punky tune and it sounds good live. It'll be a recorded part of the session.”

When new album is released, Crofts wants to tour the record more than its predecessor Mindwaves.

“That album took a bit of a back seat,” he explains. “We should have done more and taken it to Europe. “I was probably busy with Paul.

“I love playing in Europe, they really appreciate live music. We did a small tour of Italy recently because we never really play there. I just thought we'll just do it and do five gigs in a week.”

This month’s tour has already seen The Moons play a handful of dates in the UK, with Northampton’s gig the last.

“I don’t get to play Northampton much. I'm back quite a bit as my family is here but I always think if we’re going to play here, lets make it a decent one when we do.

“Of all the places I've played across the world, the Roadmender is actually one of the best gig venues. It's a good room, the stage and sound are great. I love playing there.”

Crofts and Gordelier have spent this year recording with Weller on his new LP and feature on every track.

Both will join him on his short UK tour which heads to Royal & Derngate in April.

“We start with the little tour in April and I’m sure there will be more at some point.

“The Derngate gig was a bit of a surprise. I got a message from his people that we were playing there and it was a bit of a shock.

“The first show is at the Royal Albert Hall for the Teenage Cancer Trust, which is a big one to start with and always an honour to play.

“Knowing Paul is then going to be in Northampton town centre makes me laugh a bit.

“The thought he's just around the corner from where we'd always go for a pint or whatever.

“I've never really thought of Derngate as a gig venue, it's quite surreal to be playing there.

“Why can't it be one of our best venues? Get it on the touring circuit.

“If Paul's doing it, hopefully it’s the start of things to come. I'm really looking forward to playing it.”

Crofts, who now lives in Worthing admits he misses Northampton but explains he needed to get away.

“I like to call it Boring not Worthing,” he jokes. Northampton is a beautiful place, but when you live somewhere, you can’t always see that. It’s healthy to change and I think I needed it.

“Although I grew in Northampton, I actually came here when I was one.

“Not a lot of people know this, but I was born in Sao Paulo in Brazil.

“My mum used to dance - places like the Royal Palladium and Moulin Rouge and then got a dancing job in Brazil.

“She was dancing in a circus there, met my dad and I came along. I was born into a circus - there's some strange footage around of that. Then she came back to England and to Northampton.”

Adding to Crofts’ 2017 workload, he also hopes to release a solo album, revealing it’s something he’s had the desire to do for a long time.

“It’s about time,” he explains. “I’m a songwriter and it’s time I did one for myself.

“I’ve got a lot of the demos together. Songs which are more in the style of Jennifer (Sits Alone).

“Nothing ‘indie-shmindy’. Just nice sounding tunes. My aim is something like Pet Sounds mixed with Moon Safari.

“It kills me every time a year goes by and I haven’t done it, it’s really important to me, it’s something I have to do.

“A painter would still paint, regardless if someone bought it or not.”

The Moons play The Roadmender on Friday, December 23. Doors open at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £8.