Jamie MacColl from Bombay Bicycle Club

With the majority of the hype thus far contained to Europe, British band Bombay Bicycle Club are finally touring the world on the back of their latest record.


And they're lost.


My scheduled phone interview with guitarist Jamie MacColl is delayed four times, before we finally chat in the wee hours.


" We're in Japan!" he exclaims, as if this explains his management's inability to locate him. He pauses. " We've been lost, been travelling around and racing around and losing phones and losing contact and... but everything's OK now."


A band in a hurry. I mention that in the early 60s the music of Bob Dylan was described as that of a young man in a hurry. MacColl can see the link.


"From the perspective of making records we do look like a band in a hurry," he agrees. " But if you were ever to actually meet us you'd probably think we were be the most boring people you'd ever met."


The band went into the studio four months after recording their second LP, the hugely acclaimed Flaws, and only two months after its release. MacColl explains that the songs had been brewing for some time.


"The songs had been there or were being written for a while," he says. "We always saw this album as our proper second album. Flaws was a kind of side project that ballooned out of control... at least in the UK."


Ballooned indeed. Next big thing, band to watch, the new this-or-that, and the winner is... But until now the band has hardly toured.


"I think it says something that this will be our first Australian appearance and we're already on our third record," MacColl admits. " We'll be touring heaps this time around so I'm telling people not to expect another album quite so soon."


The debut 'I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose' was urgent indie-rock,' Flaws' was acoustic immediacy and 'A Different Kind of Kick' is electric guitars meets electronica, loops and samples.


After three very different albums, the band feels unconstrained.


"Jack has always said he wants to write about lots of things, not just about being in a band and being on tour," says MacColl. "And after three very different albums we can pretty much do what we want.


"It used to be that our songwriting would start and finish with guitars. Now there are songs that start with loops or were put together on Jack's laptop at home. As a guitarist, I'm now more... complimenting it that than driving it. I'm cool with that."


Whilst lost in Japan for the day, the band had been discussing ("in very vague terms") their future.


"It's interesting," he says cautiously. "We've started talking about the next album. Certainly songs like [the new single] 'Shuffle' and 'How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep' are the direction we're going.


"I'd love to go back and make another indie album like the first one but I don't know if we could, to be honest... Jack's writing a lot of songs, but they're all over place...


"We could come up with anything," he concludes.


If they don't get lost.


Bombay Bicycle Club are touring with Elbow in March plus also have some headline shows booked in Perth, Melbourne and Sydney

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