Sell out tours, a number 2 peaking album that was released to critical acclaim, a summer playing the likes of Glastonbury, Download, Reading and Leeds, not to mention support slots with the Who, The stones and Muse, the latter including a set at the new Wembley. It could only be one band: ‘Mon the Biffy!

Rewind twelve months, rumours were starting to appear that Biffy Clyro might be sounding better than ever, but 2007 has without question exceeded all expectations. Reflecting on the point when the band finished ‘Puzzle’, James Johnston told R13: “We were feeling really excited; we felt like we had accomplished something. The album was already a success before it came out, just because we were happy with it and that’s the most important thing I guess. You never know how people are going to react to it. I can’t imagine when The Beatles were sitting on a record they thought, “this is going to sell a million copies”. You just have no idea, but we were definitely happy with what we had produced.”

The download only ‘Semi-Mental’ and the first physical release ‘Saturday Superhouse’ set the tone, with much love from the likes of Kerrang Radio and Radio 1. Dates with Bloc Party followed, which saw the band come to London just in time to play two gigs in one night, first at the Brixton Academy, and then a tiny headlining set at
Camden Crawl.

James Johnston: “I remember it vaguely. It was two shows in one night, it certainly was really good fun.”

Expanding on the contrast between the two venues, he continued: “To be honest it’s one of the greatest things about what we do, you get a chance to be in lots of different environments all the time. You have such a different experience with each one as you can imagine. It’s nice to have it mixed together, I think if you were doing the same show every night it would get really boring so it’s nice to mix things up in a short period of time, it’s really quite intense. You enjoy each show for different reasons but it was a really amazing night.”

By May, the album was out,
read a review here,and had peaked at number 2 in the UK chart. Biffy hit the road for a headline tour, taking Frank Turner and Yourcodenameis:milo with them. Get a review of all three from Newcastle Uni
here. When we recently spoke to Frank Turner about his year for this series of articles, he said of the tour, “it was lovely. Known those guys for a while and they continue to be down to earth guys.”

Then it was time for Biffy to have a summer of really living the rockstar dream!

They were a definite highlight at
Downloadpacking out the tent in what our review described as “the closest thing you’d get to a religious experience all weekend”. They stamped their mark on the summer as an act not to be missed!

It wasn’t just the festivals which were dominating their schedule. Legends like The Stones and The Who had Biffy Clyro on their support act rider, as did Britain’s new stadium heroes Muse. Even for a Scot like James Johnston, Wembley is quite a moment: “That was really exciting. It was the first show that we had done of that size, so it was incredible and also it was a big event being one of the first shows at Wembley. We were very nervous, but I think as soon as we got on stage we just felt great.”

Read a review of that set here

Then came Glastonbury, and the boys had the chance to travel like they were the bands they’d been supporting.

“We played at Glastonbury festival,” James recalled. “It was the first time we had ever been there and it was raining and it was crazy. So we played there in the afternoon and then we had been offered a gig with Muse in Paris on the same day. The only way we could get there is by helicopter and then by private jet. We did the show at Glastonbury and came straight off the stage into a waiting car and drove to the helicopter. Got a helicopter to the airport; private jet to Paris; and then get picked up by a waiting taxi. We had a police escort to the stadium and literally ran straight on stage. Our gear was already set up and we played three or four songs and had the craziest time in the world. We came off after that show and I think we were all ready to just start crying. It was such a weird day, it was so exciting. I don’t think we will ever have a day like that again.”

Leeds Festivalrounded off the summer, before Biffy Clyro turned their attention to another visit to the US.

“It’s nice to have spent so many years on the road and then go to another country where nobody knows what you’re about. It really feels like a rebirth for the band in many ways, we can just go there and start again.”

Another sold out tour of the UK has been completed, with Biffy Clyro set to support Linkin Park on their arena dates here in January. The release of ‘Machines’ has brought the band to a different and bigger audience, with even the likes of mainstream stations such as Capital Radio picking up this one. So after a monster of a year will the band take a breather in 2008? Hell no!

“We are probably going to start the year with touring, and then we are going to finish the year touring. We are definitely going to spend a couple of months in America; there will be some dates in the UK and some in Europe. Then we will be thinking about the next album, and have some time off to write and do some recording. It will be a busy year, but that’s the way that we like it. There’s no point being a band if we are just going to sit about at home. We are definitely going to make the most of things I think and hopefully have a year like we did this year.”

In which case, we’ll reconvene twelve months from now to reflect on another mighty year for Biffy Clyro. In the meantime, read the full interview with James

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