The Saw Doctors have just finished their Scottish tour after their longest ever break and are preparing to hit the rest of the UK at the end of the month. Original band member, co-songwriter and legend Leo Moran, discusses the break and what is ahead for the Irish rock band from Tuam.
A long hiatus appears to have done the Saw Doctors the world of good and it sounds as if they are going to be back with a bang. Although Leo stated this has been “hard on the ears,” – if a Saw Doctors interview started with no wit we’d all be worried – he is certain they are at the top of their game.
“We have new band members, new instruments, new arrangements and a couple of new songs. It’s all very exciting and it’s improving exponentially every day and every night.”
“We have more of an appetite now than we’ve ever had, and the fans have more of an appetite now than they’ve ever had for us. I think they’re all coming out to see us because they’re afraid they’ll never get to see us again.”
This is undoubtedly true as after thirty years of touring they have sold the most advance tickets than ever before. Leo explains “you could never have predicted it; it would be very ambitious to predict it.” Yet the Saw Doctors have an international cult following who are evidently more enthusiastic than ever – with this tour seeming as though it’ll be more than sensational, the global love for the Saw Doctors hasn’t diminished.
Leo spent his break touring acoustically with Anthony Thistlethewaite, now fellow Saw Doctor and originally one of the Waterboys. The pair played small venues around the globe including house concerts in the U.S – clearly a big change to touring with the Saw Doctors, but one you’d imagine would come with ease after touring large venues for years.
“Very different, a lot more pressure. When there are only two people on stage the whole show is hanging on everything you do. And I was the main singer which sounds a bit strange to me even when I say it.”
“I love playing everywhere. I love that connection you have with a small audience and a quiet show, you’re whispering to them at times. The buzz you create with a loud band and people singing along dancing is a different kind of buzz. It’s all good!”
“It was quite intense but it really worked. I have to say I was very pleasantly surprised with how well the shows were received.”
It certainly appeared to work.
During the break, Leo also wrote some songs for the Saw Doctors to be played on tour. Leo explained, “we have a few recorded, we need to record a few more. We’re actually going to not tour in the Spring to make sure that we put more time into doing an album.”
In response to whether there was any inspiration for the new material Leo clarified that there was “nothing in particular. Just trying to come up with a few tunes and a few words that amuse ourselves firstly, sometimes they amuse others and sometimes they don’t. There’s only one way to find out, put them out in public”. From the band that topped the Irish charts for nine consecutive weeks, with “I Useta Lover,” by rhyming ‘ass’ with ‘mass’ – it’s really a fair point.
The Saw Doctors are coming to Liverpool Philharmonic on November 30th; there are now limited tickets available.
“We feel very comfortable in Liverpool. I think Liverpool is just so distinctive, it’s a unique place, there’s nowhere else like it. There’s a generous kind of sense of fun and devilment. Everything, as far as possible, is taken as funny and as a joke I love that part of the Liverpudlian character – it’s always very enjoyable to be in its presence.”
It’s set to be an incredible show.