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Last Updated: Tuesday, 12 February 2008, 09:00 GMT
Talking Shop: Simple Plan
French Canadian punk pop band Simple Plan are about to release their fourth album, which is self-titled.

Their latest single, When I'm Gone, was released in the UK on 4 February.

Lead singer Pierre Bouvier reveals how far one of his fans went to get his attention, and what the inspiration was behind the band's name.


Simple Plan
Simple Plan started their own charity after a show in Montreal

How would you describe the sound of your band on the new album?

I would say, very energetic, very melodic. We're first and foremost a rock band that plays live shows.

I think this album has a lot of diversity and different sounds so it's quite difficult to pinpoint it in one. But you know, I would say definitely rock.

Did you work with any well-known producers on the album?

Dave Fortman produced the album as a whole. He produced all the Evanescence albums and I think he's also doing the new Slipknot record.

He used to be the guitarist in Ugly Kid Joe. We wanted to make sure we had an album that really was rock and that was going to reflect our live show.

We had a lot of success and we had a lot of fans, but it seemed in the media we weren't the coolest band
Simple Plan frontman Pierre Bouvier

We also collaborated with a guy called Danja who was working with Timbaland for a long time. We wanted to become a little more involved with the urban sound so got together with him.

Your live shows are quite crazy, what is the weirdest on-stage moment you have ever had?

There was one show in Canada where there was a fan standing up on her boyfriend's shoulders. She turned around and lifted her shirt and she had this big tattoo of my face on her back.

It was really big and I couldn't believe it, so we brought her on stage and checked it out. It was the funniest thing I'd ever seen in my life.

Simple Plan
The band named themselves after a 1998 movie

It was definitely a little bit weird, I guess it was a big compliment, but at the same time it's kind of creepy.

She seemed like a very nice girl, not like some psycho who was going to find me in my bed and cut my hair or keep a piece of my clothing.

You're quite big in the US, are you being recognised in the UK yet?

Not on a regular basis. I think it happens a lot when we have a show, a lot of people gather for that.

As far as being like a tabloid celebrity goes I don't think we are, for which I'm grateful.

We focus a lot of the attention on all the band members, not just the frontman who gets all the posters and covers. So we still have a level of anonymity.

What is the story behind the band's name?

A producer watched a movie the night before coming into the studio when we were looking for a name.

We had our first show coming up and he had seen A Simple Plan.

He said it was a good movie and we all looked at each other and thought that would be a cool band name because we started this band with the simple plan to not have regular jobs and to make a career out of music.

Why did your album get the name Still Not Getting Any?

It was kind if a pun or a joke. It was supposed to be seen as we weren't getting any girls, but it was actually a reference to our career at the time.

Simple Plan
Bouvier (l) says there is an unofficial sixth member of the band

We had a lot of success and fans, but it seemed in the media we weren't the coolest band. We weren't getting on the covers of Spin magazine or Rolling Stone.

The White Stripes were getting all this hype, but we were selling more records than them and had maybe a fraction of their exposure and critical acclaim.

Why are the regular appearances of Patrick Langlois in your videos always seem painful?

It's kind of a joke you know, as he can really pull off the part of being the guy that's getting hit.

He was with the band when we first started and has become a semi-celebrity through the website - he's like the sixth member of the band, travels everywhere with us and drives the record label crazy.

His main job is to film us constantly. We're very involved with our website and posts footage for the fans to capture any exciting moments.

Simple Plan's self-titled album is released on 18 February. Pierre Bouvier talked to BBC News entertainment reporter Fiona Pryor.



SEE ALSO
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Talking Shop: Sheryl Crow
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