Sharks: the return of a band with bite

Sharks onstage
Sharks onstage (Image credit: Ross Halfin)

In April 2016, Sharks reformed. Or rather, they reformed again. First put together by the great Andy Fraser after his departure from Free, Sharks released two critically acclaimed album before calling it a day in 1974, but returned in 1993 and released a new album two years later.

Move than two decades on, and Sharks are very definitely back. Fraser may have passed on, but original singer Snips, guitarist Chris Spedding and keyboardist Nicky Judd are back in the fold, with a line-up augmented by former Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook and bassist Toshi Ogawa, perhaps best known for his role in Ginger Wildheart’s Hey! Hello!

Ahead of shows at London’s 100 Club on Wednesday (February 8) and at Bleach in Brighton the following night, the band have released a video for Ya Ya Pop, a rollicking R&B romp with a video that appears to have been shot at one of London’s busiest railway stations, London’s Kings Cross. We asked Snips for more detail.

What’s Ya Ya Pop about?

Ya Ya, like all Sharks songs, is not ‘about’ anything. Our lyrics are a barrage of seemingly disconnected images which are aimed at creating an untamed response in the listener. You might infer that the Ya Ya Pop is about a science fiction dance-craze which is yet to occur or maybe a call to arms for over age rockers. Pay the money and take your choice.

How did the filming at Kings X come about?

That’s not Kings Cross Station as filming is not allowed there. It’s an elaborate set created at great expense.

How did the commuters react?

The commuters are all extras on £40 a day plus food.

How has the comeback been received so far?

Surprisingly well - but this is Sharks so it could implode at any time.

What keeps you and the band going?

There is something quietly magnificent bout attempting to do the impossible without fear of failure. And there is still a chance that we can reconstruct the Sharkmobile [see archive photo, below]. Sorcery is defined as ‘raising the dead’, so to bring back a long forgotten totem vehicle would be a kind of Magic that even Harry Potter would marvel at.

What are Sharks’ plans for 2017?

We’re recording a live EP at the 100 Club and we’ve collaborated with a re-mixer/DJ on our first dance track for techno heads, to be released in April. We will be recording a new album and doing some festival dates in June/July, all leading up to a UK package tour with two other related acts in September.

Tickets for the London and Brighton shows are on sale now. Ya Ya Pop is released on March 17.

Chris Spedding pays tribute to Andy Fraser - with Sharks

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