AD: I can't guarantee any sensible answers - I only got one hour's sleep. But I'll try...
What is Dave doing?
AD: Dave is mixing some Hawklords tapes at the moment. And we're going to America in May, so that's got
to be sorted out. So, all of that. It's a lot of work to get the other one together, and we need to go. So we've
got a guitarist called Steve who used to play in a band with Richard a long time ago. He's stepping in really...it
seems to be going OK.
What's [going on] with Lloyd-Langton?
AD: Huwie? That was just...we went one way and he went the other, really. We went back to being all
spacey and back to the early-70's type feel. That doesn't seem to suit Huwie, all that, you know. There's no
bad scenes. He went that way and we went that way. We still keep in contact, you know. It's all right, it's
Most things you play in some older stuff - the older records you haven't played, no?
AD: Lots we haven't played...
The members of this performance haven't played on the records of the songs that were played on this
AD: Yeah, I know what you mean, like, some of the old songs don't work because the chemistry isn't right,
between the players in the band at the time. Like "Born To Go" for instance, it doesn't work with this band
because the chemistry isn't there. But "Magnu" does. It's just whether things work or not with the players in
the band at the time. It's 'try a load out' and see which work and which don't. It can be good fun sometimes.
There are some unofficial live CD's circulating...
AD: Yeah...and records, and tapes...and singles. (Laughs) It goes on and on. All unofficial.
But they are released in shops - you can buy them everywhere.
AD: Yeah, I know
You can't do anything against it?
AD: No - we give up. Well, we tried for a few years but it just costs you loads of money and you don't get
anywhere. It's sort of... For instance, a company will put a record out and distribute it and then they'll just
close the company down. So by the time we see it there's nobody to... The company's been closed, you
know, distributed the record, made their money and closed down. There's just nobody to sue, you know.
What about the Hawklords - you wanted to make a film about it?
AD: Oh, that all fell to pieces, I think. It just didn't happen.
AD: Don't really know. It just didn't. Like other things now just don't happen. The idea's there but it just
doesn't come off sometimes - we do something else. Because that was about a parody anyway, which was
about the past...we'd rather go forward really, rather than mess about with parodies, do new things.
You are one of the few bands who changed their style from 70's to now only a bit. This I think is great: other
bands, most bands of this time, split up or got commercial. You are always doing your music [and] don't
AD: It's more fun, it's jamming and improvisation... If you play songs all the time for twenty years, eight bars
of that, four bars of this, then eight bars of that again, it gets really boring, you know. So it's lots of jamming
and improvisation, keeps it interesting because even the audience don't know what's happening, we don't
know what's happening next sometimes. Wait and see!
Where did you play before Hawkwind?
AD: Me personally? Oh, I was an unknown, really. But I knew Brian Tawn, so that was the contact. I used
to send him tapes and he used to send them down to Dave. That's how. It's seven years, now.
Are you satisfied with the last album?
AD: Yeah, the only thing I don't like about it, is with most modern albums, they're sort of too precise, you
know what I mean? They're sort of too tight, too precise, too clean. No-one releases albums with a rough
edge nowadays, you know. You know what I mean, it's all sort of the 90's mix, you know, it's all sort of
precision, you know. It doesn't work with rock music. It's got to be live, it's got to have that element of
human error in there somewhere to make it real, you know. Just like Hawkwind's early albums.
And the Xenon Codex, it's more basic?
AD: Yeah, that one's funny, sometimes I like it -a lot!- and other times I don't, you know. But that was
rushed anyway. We actually wrote it and mixed it and recorded it in three weeks. The whole Codex was a
bit of a rush job!
Sometimes it's funny, on the Chronicle Of The Black Sword, there are some hard rock songs, and then some
synthesizer songs and then we are at the hard rock... How did this occur?
AD: It just follows the story, really, it just picked out the main section of the story and the order of the story.
We just did it like that, really, and it came out that way. Yeah, it worked all right, because it follows the story
so it's bound to work really. Not doing too badly...
RC: What's the question?
AD: Ask Richard a question!
How is it playing drums in Hawkwind?
RC: How... is... it...? It's great fun.
And you've got headphones on now.
RC: Yeah, that's called...I listen to something on the radio, yeah! No, it's a click track so you can play in time
with the sequencers and the synthesizers.
Is it too difficult without it?
RC: Yeah, it means you have to pay attention to timing, to the overall timing of what you're playing, much
more than if it wasn't there. It's the same as a metronome with a pianist, you know.
HB: Or a metronome with a penis...
RC: Metronome with a what?!
RC: Oh, a penis. (Laughs)
SB: That was Harvey Bainbridge, by the way.
RC: He's concerned with earthly matters.
HB: He's a machine man is Richard, the drummer, he's plugged into a machine.
Why did you change to synthesizers? Before, you played bass...
HB: Well I left the band, at one point, and he played...he was playing the bass. And I was playing
synthesizers as well at the time. And they phoned up and said would I come and do a tour with them playing
synthesizers, I said OK and that was it...I got back in!
SB: Hooray! Hooray!
HB: Lead singer next...
AD: Yes, lead singer next. Cut-off denims...
Are you singing all the songs when Dave is on stage? Or is Dave singing all the songs?
AD: I'm only singing most of them at the moment because Dave isn't here. As a rule we share an equal
amount, you know...I think I've got Magnu, Brainstorm: things like that Dave normally sings, but I'm doing
them as he's not here.
And when Dave is in the band, you don't sing?
AD: Oh yeah, I still sing. Well, me and Dave normally sing duets, with the two of us singing harmonies:
strong vocals. We've been doing it for a long time - I mean, it sounds good.
And when Dave is in the band do you get the second guitarist?
AD: No, no, Steve is just standing in
And Dave is still playing synthesizers then?
And why do Hawkwind use digital synthesizers when you always hear, you say... you see analogs and space
sounds. It doesn't work?
AD: We've still got the analog things.
The Moog synthesizer and so on?
AD: Yeah, Harvey's still got the Moog source, and a Jupiter 8. I've got the Jupiter 6... Some of these digital
keyboards have got some nice sounds in them, sequencing and things. Got a spacey sound, especially
Harvey's. He's got all the best ones.
To my mind you are more part of the German rock scene than to the British rock scene in the 70's - like
Nektar, who lived here, and the movements in Germany...
AD: Oh yeah - the underground...like Can...yeah...
..."Kraut Rock", Amon DÃ¼Ã¼l... Was the direction in Germany better than in England in the 70's? Do you
play better sets in Germany than in other countries?
AD: No, not particularly. A good gig can be anywhere in the world, the same as a bad gig can be anywhere
in the world, really. Crowd-wise, I'd probably say middle America, Denver, that sort of area...the middle of
America, where the crowds are wild. Really good.
And how did you get to play at Stonehenge?
AD: Um, Dave phoned me up.
How often did you play there?
AD: Three times. At five o'clock in the morning, once.
And did you know anything about the English Amon DÃ¼Ã¼l band? They are not the same as the German
AD: Mmm, I think it's slightly different.
Different members? Completely different?
AD: Sometimes. They swap and change about, I think. They seem to be a different line-up every time I see
them. I never know who's in it.
Robert was in it in 1987.
AD: I don't know, I've lost contact...
AD: I don't know, I didn't actually meet Bob until '88, that's when I first met him.
Is it difficult to survive at a time when this kind of music isn't listened to by the younger ones?
AD: No, this band's always been able to survive. The crowds have always been there. Ever since I've been
in it I've noticed that the crowds have always been from ten years old up to sixty, it's always the same.
Strange...a cult following, really... We've always had a cult following, no matter what's in fashion, we've
always had our own following and survived. Which is better than being in fashion, because when you go out
of fashion, you're out - but we're always in, just!
How did Bridgett come to the band?
RC: Ask Bridgett... Bridgett! Bridgett, Bridgett, Bridgett!!
AD: Bridgett - question for you, here...
How did you come to the band?
BW: I was teaching at a private boarding school. Alan came in the room and said 'Listen here, darling...'
BW: No, I was in an all-girl band called Hippy Slags and we used to play at festivals. We were good mates
with Hawkwind and recorded a song on an album called Traveller's Aid Trust in aid of the...traveller's aid
trust...I'm too stoned to talk, really. But anyway, we did some supporting gigs with Hawkwind and then the
guys wanted all of us to get up on stage and sing. I was the only one who was able to do it, and then they
invited me to record that jam and let me jump up on stage and sing it at festivals and gigs and stuff. And then
Alan got me out of a juggling class and said 'We've got this Central TV thing to do.' A TV company wants to
film the band live and so did I want to do some things with them - yeah!
We had four practices and then we went on stage and there was TV cameras everywhere, and all my lyrics
were written down because I still couldn't remember them. And then they invited me to do some session
work on the album, on "Images". And it got to the point, really, where they were going to tour, I should
come with them. If I came with them, I would have to leave my job, so it was something like that: I had to
join the band. That's what I did.
And I haven't looked back ever since, really: did a British tour and then an American tour and then this. And
in our spare time, Alan and me and Rich and Steve play in a band called Star Nation. Which has a mature,
warm energy...it's more sort of rootsy, punkadelic...like very early Hawkwind, really.
You know Richard and [inaudible...]
BW: I've known Rich for years. Rich and Steve and me and another guy were in a band called Demented
Stoats. We used to play festivals - Stonehenge, Inglestone Common. The Latin for 'demented stoats', that's
when history becomes... What it actually means is "mindless death"...
What do you think of artists like Kate Bush?
BW: I think she's great, yeah. I'm not so keen on Kylie...is everybody mad on Kylie Minogue? I'm jealous of
Kate Bush's voice...
You are planning another live record?
AD: There's a live album coming out in April. Recorded live in Los Angeles in '89, and it's got two unreleased
studio tracks on it, Back In The Box and Treadmill. It's a single LP.
AD: Assault and Battery, Golden Void, Dream Worker, Damnation Alley, Heads, Time We Left and then Back
In The Box and Treadmill - studio: those two are studio tracks. It's good. I listen to it every now and again
just to, you know, see if it's all right and it's good.
In all the interview I've read that you're in regard that fans who hear you make music have taken drugs, and
don't listen really to the music. But to my mind this is not today, it's not always, so I think it's...
AD: Well you don't need to take drugs to come and see us because the lights and the music can give you that
effect anyway - straight, you know. If you want to take drugs, take drugs. And if you don't, don't.
I think the people who come and listen to the music...
AD: Like 'Treadmill'...
...and listen really carefully to the music...
AD: Some people do listen to it carefully, yeah. There's a few of those in England, they listen to it very
carefully and come backstage afterwards and tell you what was wrong with it! A certain *Steve Hibbert*...
It is good though, because sometimes, what they say isn't right, but at other times what they say is right, so itâ
€™s good. It's good criticism.
But you don't want to change your style in future?
AD: No. I'm an old rocker, and just love that grungey, sort of early 70's sound...I'm not into the 90's sound
at all. It's got no bollocks and it's just clean, precise, machine-like. It's got no live... It's tribal, see, is English
music like Hawkwind's, it's tribal. You can make that tribal music with your hands. Tribal space rock, innit,
Was Grateful Dead a big influence for Hawkwind in the beginning? Some critics look on it as the British
answer to the Grateful Dead.
AD: No, that's not... They did it on that side of the world and we did it on this side of the world. It's quite
cosmic, really. It would be good to do a gig with them, though, at some point.
By which bands Hawkwind was influenced by? Do you know any?
AD: Probably things like all the early 60's German psychedelic bands, Silver Apples, things like that. Things
like The Touch, Can, James Gang, you know all that sort of 60's psychedelic music, really.
BW: A lot of it was just completely brand new, though, wasn't it. I mean, it was all...like, the noise
machines and stuff were only just coming in, so what you did with it was brand new, and you created your
own sound with it. A lot of Hawkwind stuff, I mean...most bands are derivative of Hawkwind, now.
AD: Dik Mik was the originator, though. Dik Mik was the one who took audio generators to their full
potential. It's very simple, the way he did it, but he was a very clever man, with what he was doing. Very
simple but very effective, with his old oscillator boxes...
Do you know what he is doing today?
AD: I saw Dik Mik about two weeks ago, actually, in a club in London. We saw Motorhead at Hammersmith
Odeon, and had a party at the club. I saw Dik Mik there. He's roadying for [inaudible], doing a bit of
roadying here and there. He's not playing any more.
And the others - Del Dettmar?
AD: Del, he turned up at my place, about a year ago. He lives in Canada. He works with kids over there, or
something. Works with young kids, over in Canada. Teaches them how to play football, things like that.
And Simon House?
AD: Simon House...does mostly session work at the moment. He's been doing...last time I saw him he was
doing some session work for an Italian guy. Some Italian album or something.
Has he played a tour with the new group? For Space Bandits?
AD: No. He didn't do that one. But he did the tour before that, in the summer last year. He did some
festivals with us. He was just guest appearing really, most of the time.
AD: Nik Turner? (Laughs) What can one say, you know? I've never got a clue what he's up to. But
whatever it is, it's normally quite loony. Nik's Nik, really. He has a good time, anyway, that's the main thing.
Or he seems to, anyway. I haven't seen him for ages, though. And Lemmy lives in Los Angeles now, doesn't
he. He's always wanted to live over there, though. He likes America a lot. The nightclubs and the women
and the weather, that's what he likes about it!
Is there contact between Lemmy and Hawkwind? He should play sometimes with the band.
AD: Oh yeah, he'll come up and guest if we do a big gig somewhere, or if he's around at the time. He'll come
up and pinch my bass and wallop away...
Is he allowed to play the songs on his albums or play some Hawkwind songs on his albums? On Motorhead
AD: Oh yeah...what, Lost Johnny and The Watcher? Well, they're his songs anyway, so he can do them if
he wants to, with any band. Are you hungry at all? If you're hungry, you can help yourself...
[Sound of munching fades into the middle distance....interview ends...]
|The following is a transcript of an interview conducted in Germany in March 1991, on the Brockless tour that
featured Bridgett Wishart, Richard Chadwick, Alan Davey, Harvey Bainbridge and Steve Bemand. Each of
whom participates in the interview, though Alan Davey handles the lion's share of the work. Thanks to Dave
Law who provided me with the cassette tape from which I transcribed the interview (which was 27 minutes
and 12 seconds long).
two shots above are from not long afterwards: a gig in Glasgow on 5th July 1991...by which time Harvey and
Bridgett had both left the band, and Steve Bemand's guest slot had ended...oh well...Dave was back, though!!
I've used up all the photos I had from this tour. But these