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All About Eve, inc. Marty, talk about Touched By Jesus Print E-mail
Tuesday, 24 September 1991

This is from Australian street paper Drum Media dated 24th September 1991



All About Eve have been one of the most loved groups in England for the past few years, yet in Australia we have barely heard of them. But when they needed a new guitarist, it was Marty Willson-Piper of the Church who stepped into the breach, resulting in the Eve's new album, Touched By Jesus. garry Williams spoke to the band in London, and wonders if the world will now listen.

M: Marty
A: Andy
J: Julieanne

M: I met Julieanne at a church gig 1 1/2 years ago. We seemed to get on all right. Six months late rI got this phone cal, "the guitarist has left - what are you doing?"
J: Help me!
M: So Julieanne asked me to make this record them, and it clicked. I had the All About Eve albums, I knew I could fit in.

But how is this going to work out? I don't know of anyone else who's even been in two major acts at the same time.

M: There's always room for the first bloke to do it. So far I've managed to slot one in between the other. I made an All About Eve album, I've just made a Church album, I'm touring with All About Eve and the church album isn't out until January so we've got plenty of time to tour the world, maybe come to Australia.

It should certainly lift your profile in Australia, where All About Eve have previously been about as well known as The Church are in England (i.e not very.)

J: That's one of the things we have in common.

The new album's called Touched By Jesus. when did you all become born again?

Marty, Julianne and bass player Andy who's just arrived all laugh but no one wants to answer, but finally Marty is goaded...

M: We felt like we'd made a good a record, after the last album which the Eves weren't happy with, we were proud of this one, inspired by it.

All About Eve had a colourful history before Marty joined. Initially using a drum machine live (they only found a full-time drummer in late 1987), they endured undeserved tags of "Goth" and later "Hippie", survived to make a stunning debut album in 1988 which ran the gauntlet from screeching to a cappela traditional folk. The second album was a disaster though, and then Tim Brechino left to join the Sisters Of Mercy.

Did you ever feel like jacking it in when your main songwriter left?

Collectively: Ooooh! (shudder)

A: Tim was never the songwriter, that's what everyone thinks just because he was the guitarist, but we all sat in a room together and wrote the songs just like we do now.
J: So we didn't feel stranded.
A: And Tim didn't go off and join the Sisters, Tim was kicked out of AAE 'cause he wasn't pulling his weight. Then he got the chance to join the Sisters.

J: You're getting a bit tough Andy. did you wake up with a hangover?
A: We were into being a band, touring, being together, Tim wasn't. He lived up North with his Mum and dad and didn't really want to be with us.

But I thought you all lived up in Leeds?
J:That's another misconception, that we're a Leeds band.
A: We've all lived in London for years.

Marty shares a similar Northern England background to the rest of this new group he has just joined.

M: I was born in Manchester but I grew up in Liverpool. then I moved to London, then to Australia and joined the Church.

And now of course, lives in Stockholm. so Marty's used to getting around a bit. All about Eve started on the independent label Eden, and although they moved to Polygram in 1987, I wondered if they still had a burning independent spirit.

J: Eden were an indie label that we were licenced through, which just meant that we did all the work, everything except press the records and we weren't very good at it. we weren't excited by the cottage industry aspect of it, but it was the only way we could get a record out. I don't think we enjoyed the "indie scene", we were always looking for a real deal, with real money and real bastards!

So have you got the freedom you want on the major label?
J: Freedom has never been freely given, it had to be fought for. we've managed not to compromise too much but it's always there to fend off. If we nudged ourselves in one direction or the other we could be so much easier to market. a review said we were "straddling sensitivity and rock" as if it would be better if we dropped the sensitivity and rocked it up or stopped rocking and become a folk group!

M And The Church have that problem too. we have a sensitive side and rock side. The Milky way side and the tatalised side, and it seems to throw people off or something.

So you can relate to All About Eve?

M Yes I can - the prejudices about All About Eve like the "Goth" thing. the Church were slammed for being psychedelic, wearing paisley shirts. We had to wear that around our necks for six years.

J:It really hurts you, something trivial like that.

I noticed you weren't wearing the gypsy garb on stage the other night, Julieanne. Was it in the wash?

J: The gypsy garb is in the incenerator! No, so many Oxfam shops in north London have benefitted from my change in dress sense!

So what does All About Eve stand for? An evocation of something intangibly english? And could their stark and haunting version of the traditional lament She Moves Through the Fair on the first album be a clue?

J: We just needed another song for the album and I knew this old folk song. The annoying thing is that a year later Simple Minds released their version, Belfast Child and got to number one. I think the Englishness is getting more diluted as we go along. it's still important but it's the folkiness that's the problem. Folk is such a despised form here. i'm not embarrassed that that element has been there but I think on the new record, sensitivity has replaced the folkiness.

At last drummer Mark arrives, just as we're finishing up.

Would you like to say anything for the interview?

Mark: Pizza.

Pizza sounds like a good idea, so I'll be off, and hope to catch up with All About eve when they tour Australia, right?

Julie: Well, it seems that as we've got Marty for this allotted time, it's  looking like December/January

Prepare to be touched by the almighty sounds of All About Eve.

Last Updated ( Monday, 25 June 2007 )
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