The Amazons: Who cares who's number one? People are buying rock

By Jimmy Blake
Newsbeat reporter

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Image caption,
The Amazons now have two top 10 albums under their belt - something not that common for modern rock acts

The Amazons have just had their second top 10 album.

Future Dust, the follow-up to 2017's self-titled debut, has entered the UK album chart at number nine.

To help get it there, the Reading four-piece followed a familiar path for their modern rock contemporaries: a zigzag of intimate shows and in-store signings all over the country.

But none of their peers are joining them in the chart this week.

"There's not a huge amount" of new rock albums breaking through, singer Matthew Thompson tells Radio 1 Newsbeat as The Amazons step off stage at Radio 1's Big Weekend in Middlesbrough.

Primal Scream (all at least 25 years older than The Amazons) are the only other band with a top 20 new entry.

Queen's Greatest Hits, Rumours by Fleetwood Mac and The Very Best of Sting & The Police are also among the top-selling rock albums this week, according to the iTunes rock chart.

If you hadn't clocked, they're all significantly older than The Amazons.

And Matthew seems a little surprised that The Amazons are among them.

"People coming out in the hundreds and coming out and buying a rock and roll record in 2019, who would have thought it?" he asks.

"I've seen Rumours was in the rock charts this week, and at one point we were number one in there. It's kind of crazy."

Image caption,
The band also played a surprise set on the BBC Introducing stage at Radio 1's Big Weekend

Matthew says being one of the younger bands in the chart at the moment is inspiring rather than a concern.

"It's a nice tonic to the pop scene at the moment.

"Who cares or remembers who was number one in the pop chart last year? No offence, but who actually cares?

"The chart just shows that, in terms of the rock genre, there's not a huge amount of new albums breaking through and there's a lot of focus on the so-called golden years.

"That's obviously fine because they're incredible albums.

"But it shows that the beauty of rock albums is that if fans take it under their wing and connect with it, then it can have a long, long lasting life."

Drummer Joe Emmett jokes: "Look - we're just adding to the rich tapestry of rock and roll."

Image caption,
The band grew up in and out of the studio - drummer Joe became the father to twins during the making of the album

Despite the album's success, Matthew suggests there were moments of doubt ahead of the release of Future Dust.

"There were a lot of times when we were writing this record - and it was very much us four and Catherine [producer Catherine Marks] locked away working on it and we're like, 'Is this good?'

"It was a grafting process to get it done. But we're really proud of it.

"We were boys with the first one, and it feels like we've come back as suited men.

"I know every artist ever will say this - even if they're having a terrible time - but the response to this record has honestly blown us away."

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