HAVING first emerged at the start of the Noughties amidst a burgeoning swarm of guitar bands, Sunderland quartet The Futureheads, with their proud regional accents and spiky, playful sensibilities, stuck out from the off. Over the following decade The Futureheads – comprised of vocalists and guitarists Barry Hyde and Ross Millard, vocalist and bassist David 'Jaff' Craig and vocalist and drummer Dave Hyde – amassed five critically-acclaimed albums, headlined countless tours and earned an NME Single of the Year accolade for their iconic cover of Kate Bush's Hounds of Love.

The band have just released Powers, their sixth studio album, and are on a winter tour of the UK to celebrate their 15th year. Recorded and self-produced at Newcastle's First Avenue Studio, Powers looks “at the balance of power in a personal, political and relational sense”.

As they head to Newcastle Northumbria University on the December 13, What's On talks to vocalist and guitarist Barry Hyde.

Powers is your first album in nine years. How was it getting back into the swing of things?

It's been a while since we wrote, well, anything together. The most important thing for a songwriter is that they actually want to pick up their chosen instruments and want to play. We've always worked like that, using electric guitars. After Rant!, we didn't really know what to do, putting the guitars back on felt strange after releasing an a capella record. Writing Powers was great fun and we managed to find out thread and pick up where we left off with The Chaos. It's all about riffs really. And I'm happy to say that the album contains some of most developed and finest compositions. It's really great to be playing together again.

Were you happy with the reception the album received?

We are over the moon with the reception. The general feeling is that people are glad we are back and that we have something to offer.

Your December tour celebrates 15 years of The Futureheads. What’s been your greatest achievement so far?

Honestly, it's hard to say really. Certainly, managing to commit ourselves to making a new record, despite our very different lives now must rank highly amongst them. It was like chipping away at a massive sculpture gradually over 40 sporadic sessions… Not an easy task.

What are you most looking forward to whilst touring?

We are just happy to be able to comeback to a dedicated fan base after quite a long break from the band. We are enjoying hanging out and playing powerfully.

Are there any previous shows that have stuck with you?

Perhaps going to Japan for the first time in 2004 and playing the Fuji Rock festival. It was a genuine realisation of how far we had come. We love it all.

What has been your biggest motivation to keep touring?

It's a good way of trimming down and losing weight! It's quite the workout, very sweaty!

Your self-titled debut album has been heralded as iconic. How does it feel to be revisiting the album after such a long time?

Well, some of those songs have been played at every single gig we have done. It'll be nice to dust off some of the more obscure tracks. Like, Man Ray and He Knows. They are quite tricky. It’s mad to think the album is 15 years old. It certainly doesn't feel like that long ago.

Your version of Hounds Of Love is an incredible track, winning you NME’s Single of the Year – did you expect it to become such a success that is still recognised over a decade later?

I think we knew that it was a special cover version from the very first time we played it. It still fills the dance floor at indie nights. It's such a great song and Kate Bush is incredible too.

Which artists/albums will you be listening to in-between shows and whilst travelling?

I am loving Nick Cave at the minute. There’s also Crack Cloud, Idles, Fontaines DC, and Stealing Sheep. There’s just so much good new music about, it’ll be hard to choose.

What can fans that have never seen you play live expect from the tour?

They can expect it to be very loud. Very loud and very fast.

  • The Futureheads, Northumbria University, Newcastle, December 13. Tickets: livenation.co.uk