Exeposé Music online (23 November 2015)
When the whispers started in early October, it seemed too good to be true. But Busted is back. This isn’t a drill. I’ve got tickets to see them.
Yep. Matt Willis, James Bourne and *gasp* Charlie Simpson are about to give UK fans what they’ve been hankering after since 2005.Is Charlie in it for the money? Undoubtedly. But do we care? Absolutely not.
Here’s the deal. Busted’s rise to fame in the early noughties was a cascade of No.1s, sell-out tours and Brit Awards – but in early 2005, tragedy struck. Charlie wanted out. You know how it is. You meet these two guys at a party, and before you know it, you’re jamming. One thing leads to another, and somehow you’ve arranged a gig. Next thing you know, the new guys are practising at yours, you’ve got rehearsals scheduled, more gigs coming up… and you start to wonder where your heart truly lies.
In Charlie’s case, it was with new band Fightstar. So off he trotted, leaving James and Matt in the lurch and the UK’s teenage population heartbroken. Busted may have been – well, busted – for over a decade, but they’ve never left the hearts of the noughties youth. Play ‘Year 3000’ or ‘Air Hostess’ at a club and at least half the room starts screaming. So it’s understandable that we’re almost wetting ourselves at news of a reunion. But there’s something more to this glee – and let’s face it: it’s got a lot to do with Charlie.
It’s like when the boy who dumped you as a chubby 12-year-old with a big forehead and wonky glasses suddenly starts liking your Facebook profile pictures eight years later. (Completely fictional scenario, obviously.) When Charlie left Busted in 2005, he wasn’t just dumping Matt and James. He was breaking up with all of us. But what’s this? He wants us back?! It’s tempting to give him the middle finger – except the media’s doing a pretty good job of that already.
“NOUGHTIES pop sensations BUSTED are re-forming – ten years after CHARLIE SIMPSON quit to become a credible rock star and vowed never to return,” The Sun screamed in early October. In other words: “lmao, Charlie.” The same journalist went on to explain his cynicism at Charlie’s return – suggesting he’s merely doing it for a slice of the fame Matt and James have recently enjoyed with McBusted. You know what? He’s probably right. But I’m not too bothered.
A lot’s changed in the past decade. Charlie’s grown into his eyebrows, I’ve grown into my forehead… and we’re not living underwater as triple-breasted women yet, but that can’t be far away. However, some things haven’t changed. Busted’s songs are still fabulously uncool, teen angst is still a viable subject matter – and we’re still willing to pretend these guys are best mates, even though there’s a good chance they hate each other’s guts.
I don’t care if Busted are enjoying boyish banter or sitting in stony silence backstage next May. As long as they can sing ‘Year 3000’ like they did in 2004, I’m putty in their hands.
Image: Simon Jones PR