Life changed for Ricky Wilson when the Kaiser Chiefs frontman was invited to join Kylie Minogue as a new face on Britain’s The Voice.
“Who, at the start of 2014, was sitting around saying, `I can’t wait for a new album by Kaiser Chiefs, I wonder what those guys are up to?’ Who? Not many people, I can tell you,” he says.
It was announced late last year Wilson would be a judge on the BBC One singing competition, alongside Minogue, Black Eyed Pea will.i.am and perma-tanned pensioner Tom Jones.
“I was asked to do it three weeks before filming was meant to start, and two weeks before we were going to Atlanta to record the new album,” he continues.
“I started getting really panicky about it and hadn’t told the others I was even thinking it over.”
He says he was initially unsure, not wanting his own profile to detract from the band, or undermine the new songs they’d written and were really proud of.
“I didn’t want to go on TV and make it look like I was trying to sell the band, but when I told them I’d been offered the job, they were all for it. We all agreed that if you’re in an alternative band and you’re asked on Saturday night TV, you do it.
“If we’d been asked to perform, we’d have bitten their hands off, so why would I say no to going on 12 weeks in a row, where I can get my personality across and remind everyone that there’s a band called Kaiser Chiefs? How can that not be a good thing?”
He says he feels vindicated when journalists turn up to interview them and he’s invited onto chat shows.
Time will tell if the show has turned around the band’s fortunes, although with the new album heading toward the top of the UK charts, it already looks to have worked.