Supergrass singer Gaz Coombes opens up about band’s painful split

Gaz Coombes in the press room during the Q Awards 2018 in association with Absolute Radio at the Camden Roundhouse, London.
Gaz Coombes in the press room during the Q Awards 2018 in association with Absolute Radio at the Camden Roundhouse, London.

Supergrass frontman Gaz Coombes has said he needed 10 years to forget the painful memories before the band was able to reform.

The Oxford Britpop outfit is getting back together to play a 2020 reunion tour and release a career-spanning box set.

Coombes, 43, who has enjoyed a successful solo career, said their split in 2010, during the recording of scrapped seventh album Release The Drones, was “f***ing painful”.

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Supergrass perform at the Brixton Academy in London (James Carr/PA)

He told Q Magazine: “We needed that distance of time to forget some of the shit and pain at the end. It was f***ing painful. I needed 10 years.”

He also warned fans not to expect new music from the four-piece.

“I don’t want to rule anything out but that’s not part of it,” he told the magazine.

“It’s just this one year I’m up for, doing these gigs.”

Titled The Strange Ones 1994–2008, the retrospective box set marks the 25-year anniversary of their debut album I Should Coco.

The reunion will take current members Coombes, Danny Goffey, Nic Goffey and Andy Davies across the UK and to Europe and North America between February and April this year.

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Supergrass drummer Danny Goffey (Yui Mok/PA)

Coombes, who was first to quit the band, said he still felt responsible for its sudden demise.

He said of recording the aborted Release The Drones album: “I remember feeling uninspired.

“You’d take CDs with you on your journey home and it was the first time I’d never play them to anyone, which was weird.

“I was trying to be optimistic, thinking that they weren’t ready, but I just wasn’t digging it. I just felt quite sad about it, really.”

Coombes said his lowest point came when Supergrass played their latest music to a potential new label.

He said: “We played them two or three tracks and I was sitting there thinking: ‘These aren’t very good.’

“It just felt horrible and demoralising. It was painful and I didn’t see a way out apart from leaving the band.

“I felt responsible. I didn’t want to f*** things up for anyone else. But once I’d decided to leave, I felt really good, that weight had gone.

“I had no thoughts about doing any music on my own, I just wanted to not have that feeling with music before it got too much and did any damage.”

Read the full interview in Q Magazine and online.

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