Mr. Ted chats to Clunk about sprouts, quavers and other stuff not necessarily food related.

No Brussels were hurt during the making of this album cover

Hello Mr. Ted, welcome to the Clunk universe.

The first question is the not-too-exciting one. Could you tell Clunk who does what in the band?

Mark does vocals, dreads and guitars. Pete does vocals, flatcaps and guitars. Manning does bass and oddballness. Phil does vocals, drums and gurning. Occasionally our original bassist has to fill in on drums for Phil. That’s who was with us when we played The Ferret, Cragg does drums, bass and sensibility.

Saw you folks recently in Preston. Loved the song Shame. This begs the 2 questions. Have you ever had any problems with neighbours and do you often drop your Quavers?

Mark: I’ve had problems with neighbours a long time ago but in my current house I’ve had no problems with neighbours infact they are wonderful people. This song was a throw away comment made by Manning which made us laugh when we were jamming. Quavers are a lot easier to drop than you think. It’s also the silliest word we could think of that sort of rhymes with neighbours. Both are a big shame though.

Pete: Didn’t Manning have problems with his neighbours? We’re a serious band with serious songs about serious problems.

Okay…what about Sexy Legs? A nice sing-a-long ….Auto erotic, exotic, asphyxiation. Any hobbies you want to tell us about?

Pete: I have some very interesting hobbies I enjoy watching football and used to go fishing when I was younger.

Mark : Sexy legs is based on something that happened to me online. I was selling a SNES game called Mr Nutz on Ebay and had a message from a user curiously named sexylegs69er.  He/she/they decided to send me a ‘buy it now’ offer rather than continuing with the auction. The idea of Sexy Legs wanting Mr Nutz was something that absolutely deserved to be crafted into the funky silly song it is now.

When I think of the name Mr. Ted it brings to my mind images of Father Ted of Craggy Island. Is that supposed to happen?

Mark: Our bandcamp page does actually have a rather charming headshot of Father Ted peeking out:

We also get Mr Ed the horse too.

Pete: Mr Dead of Harry Enfield fame too! The actual story is that Mr Ted was a barber in our hometown. Two of us used to get our hair cut by Mr Ted and the other two used to get our hair cut by Alan. So ultimately it was a toss up between the band being named Mr Ted or Alan.

If you had to compare, which member of Mr Ted resembles which character in Father Ted and which one needs a kick up the arse like Bishop Brennan?

Mark is Pat Mustard, the hairy baby maker. Manning is as daft as Dougal. Phil is Father Jack. Pete is Victor Meldrew in that one episode based on his obsession with flatcaps. We all need a good kick up the arse, but haven’t seen any likenesses of ourselves in skirting boards recently, so not sure who is the chosen one. Who would you prefer?

I don’t want to kick any of you up the arse….you’re too big and I’m too old.

Here at Clunk we have a copy of your album El Dirty Sexy. There are quite a few brussel sprouts used for the cover picture. Who is responsible for the artwork, that includes inside that involves drawings, figurines and numbered pages with odd titles. Full explanation required!

We wanted to call the album ‘Passing Sprouts’ at first but changed our minds but kept the sprout idea of artwork. Pete took the original photo of the sprouts and Manning designed and chopped it all up for the front and back of the case. The booklet figure photos were made by Mark and our go-to camera man Andy Allchurch. It was intended as a flipbook initially but this worked much better. The numbered pages are just the order of the booklet but the odd titles are something else. It’s a riddle/code that nobody has managed to solve.

It’s a great record and you folks are highly entertaining to see play. Surely there must be big plans for 2020, a tour, another release or 2, or maybe just a holiday somewhere warm and sunny?

The record took us a good long while to complete as despite its chaotic nature, we needed to be really careful and methodical to take the listener on the weird confusing journey we wanted. We are writing songs for album two but doubt it will be released in 2020. 2020 is the year of writing and gigging, although there’s a couple of Ted offspring on the way so obviously we have to factor that in. We are playing the o2 Academy in March which we’re very much looking forward to –

Other than that, we will be getting round the country and should be playing a few festivals, TBC!

I believe you folks are from Liverpool. For anybody visiting soon which bands/singers do you suggest one checks out?

We are indeed Scouse boys. Our label ‘Society of Losers’ has a fantastic roster mostly based around Liverpool ways and all based in the North. Our bezzie labelmates are Salt the Snail (one of the maddest live shows you’ll see), Infants (fucking loud, creepy mascot), Crapsons (making big waves supporting Half Man Half Biscuit and Pulled Apart By Horses), Blanchard (one of our fave bands) and Bisch Nadar (aubergine emoji). There’s loads of other bands signed too. Basically the entire label rules, go check us out!

Also check out Takotsubo Men and Bouche, played with them both for our album release party and they’re both excellent and good mates and absolutely worth your time.

Red or blue?

Divock scoring, all around us, Kopites singing, having fun, ’tis the season love and understanding, merry Christmas Everton! We’re all a load of redshites in this band.

Anything else that you would like to add?

Mark: Clunk makes me think of the sound of a metal object being dropped into a bath tub. Is this intentional?

Yeah, it’s definitely an onomatopoeic (not sure about the spelling) word and one can make all sorts of imaginings. My personal fave is my wooden leg falling off.Thanks so much for taking the time with Clunk, we hope to see you out there in 2020.

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