THE Vamps had stuck to a relentless schedule for five years, with four albums, eight tours and a string of big hits.
But the Brits have revealed they had to get off the “treadmill” last year after becoming “bored” with music and fearing they would end up churning out rubbish unless they took a break.
They returned today with their brilliant, upbeat single Married In Vegas, the first taste of their as-yet untitled new album.
In an exclusive chat, James McVey said: “It was getting to a point where it was turning into a conveyer belt.
“We loved what we were doing but it was about making sure that we weren’t going to burnout. We needed to live a little bit.
“Last year we had a moment where we wanted to take some time apart just to see what would happen and we naturally gravitated back together, which was nice as I imagine a lot of bands after nine years of touring probably don’t ever come back.”
James, along with bandmates Bradley Simpson, Connor Ball and Tristan Evans, regrouped at an Airbnb and wrote their new record together — without the help of superstar songwriters.
James continued: “It’s taking those risks that are really important for us and Brad always says you need to get bored before realising what you want.
"We’re more invested in the music and we’re really excited to get back on the road and tour it.”
James appeared on I’m A Celeb in 2018 during the band’s hiatus, but he revealed the tough experience highlighted issues from his past.
The singer has previously told how he has suffered with anorexia and anxiety.
James said: “I thought I had got to a really strong place with being comfortable with myself but doing that show really made me realise that I had certain demons that I never addressed.”
Away from music, Brad is kicking off a new side career as a gin guru.
The singer, who already runs Simpsons Gin Bar, in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham, said: “I’m in the process of developing my own gin, I’d love to get it out by the end of the year.
“We are working with this distiller and you pick the botanicals that go in and build the flavour profile.”
If he needs a taste tester, I’m more than happy to help out.
Bey's 69 movie outfit changes
BEYONCE didn’t just get a hefty pay cheque for making her visual album Black Is King – she got an entirely new wardrobe, too.
The superstar released the 85-minute film on Disney+ today — and she manages to get through a whopping 69 costume changes during the stunning production.
The film is comprised of a series of music videos set to her 2019 album The Lion King: The Gift, after she voiced the character of Nala in Disney’s live-action remake of the 1994 classic.
Beyonce said that it is “a celebratory memoir for the world on the Black experience”.
The film features her husband Jay-Z, mum Tina, daughters Blue Ivy and Rumi, and also celebrity pals Naomi Campbell, Kelly Rowland and Lupita Nyong’o.
Beyonce dedicated the film to her three-year-old son, Sir.
In a tribute at the end, she wrote: “Dedicated to my son, Sir Carter.
“And to all our sons and daughters, the sun and the moon bow for you. You are the keys to the kingdom.”
The Sun told in June how she had negotiated an £80million deal with Disney+ for three major projects for the platform, including this film and an involvement in the soundtrack for Black Panther 2.
She’s worth every penny.
KANYE West has insisted he is “quite alright” amid concerns for his mental health.
The troubled rapper tweeted today: “There is a tactic of 4 Ds – Distract, discredit, dismiss to destroy.”
I've got your back, Ri
RIHANNA is really getting behind her new skincare range, by showing off her back to the camera at its launch.
She held a virtual celebration to mark the release of her first Fenty Skin products and posed on a green carpet in this stunning leather dress as part of the event.
The new project has been a labour of love for Rihanna, who hasn’t released an album in four-and-a-half years, much to the dismay of her fans.
But the starter beauty kit containing all three Fenty Skin products sold out today when it was launched to shoppers – so she’s clearly doing something right.
City Sam works it all out
FOLLOWING the success of his summer hit This City, Sam Fischer has announced the release of his debut body of work.
Called Homework, the project – out August 28 – is the culmination of years of songwriting.
In an exclusive interview the Australian singer said: “Homework is a cathartic body of music.
“I’ve been writing and re-writing for four years. I feel like I write my best work when I am at my lowest. It isn’t a good place for me but it works.
“On social media I have people calling me a one-hit wonder. When people say it to me, I think, ‘Well, I’ve had one more hit than you’.
“I never thought I would write a song as successful as This City. But I think with this new project, it might help other people. I can’t wait for everyone to hear it.”
Sam, who is pals with Scottish superstar Lewis Capaldi, also hopes to hit the road in 2021.
That will be music to his fans’ ears.
Official Singles Chart
- Head & Heart – Joel Corry feat. MNEK
- Savage Love – Jawsh 685 and Jason Derulo
- Rockstar – Dababy feat. Roddy Ricch
- Lighter – Nathan Dawe feat. KSI
- Only You Freestyle – Headie One and Drake
- Cardigan – Taylor Swift
- Watermelon Sugar – Harry Styles
- Exile – Taylor Swift feat. Bon Iver
- West Ten – AJ Tracey and Mabel
- The 1 – Taylor Swift
Grande and Gaga to reign
WOMEN are set to win big at the MTV Video Music Awards this year, with Ariana Grande and Lady Gaga leading the nominations.
The duo are up for nine gongs each thanks to their collaboration Rain On Me, which features in seven categories.
Ariana is also in the running for Best Collaboration thanks to Stuck With U, her duet with Justin Bieber, while Gaga is recognised in the new Best Quarantine Performance category.
The pals are ahead of Billie Eilish, who is in the running for six gongs, as is The Weeknd, while Taylor Swift is up for five.
Despite a stellar year for Dua Lipa with the release of her second album Future Nostalgia, she was snubbed in the major categories.
But the Brit singer still managed to get four nominations including Best Direction and Best Visual Effects.
The VMAs, which will take place at New York’s Radio City Music Hall, will air on MTV here on August 31 at 9pm.
- Joel Corry and MNEK have lodged a second week at No1 with their ridiculously catchy tune Head & Heart. It sold 18,000 more than Jason Derulo and Jawsh 685’s track at No2.
- Nathan Dawe and KSI scored the highest new entry of the week with Lighter at No4. It is their first Top Five hit, but Watford-born rapper KSI’s seventh Top 40 single.
Phil host with most
PHILLIP Schofield has enjoyed a bumper year, banking another £2million, his latest accounts show.
The TV host raked in a whopping £600,000 per year for presenting This Morning.
But he has pocketed far more from a string of lucrative endorsement deals, including adverts for We Buy Any Car.
Figures filed to Companies House this week show that the firm he filters his earnings through has a net worth of £2.5million – with £1.8million in cash for 2019. He also paid £366,404 in corporation tax.
Phillip, who came out as gay in February, and his estranged wife Stephanie have just launched their own property firm, Fistral Properties Ltd.
He is said to be worth £8million with a career spanning more than three decades.
With a bank balance like that, he could quit tomorrow and live happily ever after.
JAMES Arthur has promised fans they will love his next album.
He tweeted: “I couldn’t be more excited to share with you this new lane I’m playing around in. I think you’ll be surprised in a good way.”
Oh Suga! Keisha falls
IN the words of their 2002 hit, Sugababes singer Keisha Buchanan’s head must have been spinning round round, baby, round round after taking a fall.
She tumbled while putting up decorations as a birthday lockdown treat for a pal.
The Round Round singer revealed: “I was trying to do something really lovely for my friend, hang up some birthday balloons, and I took a mis-step and had a really nasty fall.
“I’m on the mend now and I’m all good.”
Keisha’s accident is not nearly as painful as when she sees old photos of herself.
She admitted to the Girl Group Gossip podcast: “I could have definitely avoided certain hairstyles. There was a lot going on.
“There are photos in your mum’s living room somewhere in a photo album.
"Whereas with mine, they’re on the net.
"So I’ll meet a guy and he’ll be like, ‘Oh, I Googled you,’ and that’s the first thing that comes up. It’s just embarrassing.”
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