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'Now, you don't feel the need to prove yourself as much.' Arctic Monkeys frontman, Alex Turner, speaks to actor Martin Compston in an exclusive interview for The Big Issue

Line of Duty star and Arctic Monkeys’ superfan, Martin Compston has spoken to Arctic Monkeys frontman, Alex Turner, in an exclusive interview for The Big Issue.

Alex Turner and Martin Compston

Two days hanging out with the band and I was a very happy man Photo: Lewis Evans

Line of Duty star and Arctic Monkeys’ superfan, Martin Compston has spoken to Arctic Monkeys frontman, Alex Turner, in an exclusive interview for The Big Issue, ahead of the release of Arctic Monkeys new album The Car in October.

On first starting the band 20 years ago, Turner reflected: “It probably does feel about 20 years ago. But that’s an interesting one, isn’t it? Because sometimes you feel like you could walk through a door and be right back there.”

Turner added: “I’m trying to scratch a little bit of that feeling here on the new record. It feels like a long time ago, but it can be right behind you. Something reminds you and it takes you back. There’s a lyric on Hello You that says, “I could pass for 17 if I just get a shave and catch some zzzz’s”. Maybe that’s barking up that tree a little. Well, a lot. I’m thinking about going to the snooker club with my granddad and it feels like we were just there. But, wait a minute, there’s all this time in between.”

He continued: “At the time it happened very quickly and was a shock to the system. We topped the charts for the first time and everything became quite different very quickly. But there was always a feeling that this could be over in a few months. The bottom is gonna fall out any minute. I’m thinking about you mentioning The View From the Afternoon. We’ve been playing [it] in these last few shows – when I’m doing that, it feels like it would take more than a shave and a sleep to feel 17!”

Compston shared how previous experience affects his approach to acting now: “I am so much better technically at my job than I’ve ever been. The 17-year-old me couldn’t do what I do now. But I’m still trying to get back to the fearlessness of being 17 – working with Ken Loach, when he’d set up scenes, I’d be like, why are you doing that? Now I wouldn’t have the balls. So I want to keep the knowledge but get back to the instinct.”

Turner responded: “Exactly. And that that instinct is here somewhere, isn’t it? I’ve also had phases where I’m like, I need to get on top of all my references. But now you don’t feel the need to prove yourself as much.”

Compston opened up what it was like to interview his musical heroes: “When I was first asked to interview Arctic Monkeys for The Big Issue, the first feeling was panic. You want to do it so much. Doing it for The Big Issue is an amazing gesture from the boys. And they are heroes of mine and have been such a big part of my life. The fact that we could get up close and personal was an opportunity I couldn’t miss.”

He continued: “We’ve all grown up but we aren’t old b**tards. And they are so f**king cool – it was reassuring. And it made me think how far I’d come. It has taken me a long time to start talking about producing my own stuff and follow up the ideas I’ve got in my head. You can put yourself in a box, but when I listened to their new album, the scale and ambition of it, it feels like they are getting better. And that’s inspiring.”

Arctic Monkeys’ new album The Car will be out on Domino Records on 21st October.

Read the full interview in The Big Issue Magazine, out now.  You can buy a copy from your local vendor or by taking out a subscription at www.bigissue.com/subscribe.

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