Where are you and what's your state of mind?

I'm in Austin, Texas in a really bizarre motel. Most of the band have checked out actually, 'cos they found it so hideous. For some perverse reason I've decided to stay on.

Is your pink feather boa with you?

Yes, but she's not on my mike stand anymore; I have a pink sparkly mic stand now and my pink boa is draped over my amp. It's all nice and fluffy and cosy.

Who are you talking about in the song 'Stupid Girl'?

God, about a million girls and boys that we all know. I mean, it could just as easily be called 'Stupid Boy'. It's just a song of reproach to a lot of people we know.

Can you see the attraction in Liam and Damon?

Of course I can. I can see the attraction of both of them. It's obvious why girls go crazy for them. They're both charismatic, good-looking boys.

What's your idea of heaven?

Sitting at home with alcohol and music and nothing going on.

And hell?

Erm, I don't know. Nothing's really horrible. Working for a living? No, that's not really true.

So do you like Hooch?

Only if I'm so drunk I don't know it's Hooch!

What would there be in your garbage can?

Loads and loads of empty boxes of all kinds of non-prescription drugs for all kinds of neuroses! Lots of empty vitamin packets - I'm a complete neurotic, so you'd find plenty of stuff like that.

Are your lyrics deliberately ambiguous?

Yes they are, definitely, because we felt that we didn't want any of the songs to be exclusive to one person; we wanted a lot of people to relate to them. I'm always disappointed when you listen to songs and then you hear the band explain what they mean and what you thought about it was the complete opposite of what it really meant.

What would you be doing if you've never been a singer?

I would probably still be working in a shop. I flunked school. I would like to think I'd be disciplined enough to go back to studying and get some qualifications, but I get the feeling I probably wouldn't. I'd still be working in the shop.

How big is your garden?

I don't have a garden. I don't even have a house of my own. Or a flat. I'm an intercontinental traveller and I'm a sad case!

Who's the moodiest member of Garbage and does being on the road bring out the worst in them?

I'm the moodiest, definitely, but I really like touring so I'm probably less moody on the road than I am in the studio. And Steve (Marker, guitarist) is by far the strangest, he's the weird one. Touring seems to trigger off total insanity. Everybody just looks at him and goes, "Psycho!"

Do you ever have any recurring dreams or nightmares?

I used to when I was wee. I used to always have this nightmare that my whole family would be going on a picnic and everyone would get eaten up by a wolf, except me, and I would be crying. Then I'd attack the wolf and open it up and get all my family back.

How would you rip the wolf open?

I have no idea.

Explain the allure of your favourite singer, old crooner Frank Sinatra.

I just love him and I love his singing. I like listening to very relaxing music when I'm at home, late at night. Frank soothes my ruffled feathers. And he was the original gangster, the original punk, he was everything. He's even got his own credit card in the U.S. now, Sinatra Express, which is quite incredible.

What would you say are your best and worst qualities?

My honesty and my honesty. It gets me in a lot of trouble, but it also gets me out of a lot of trouble.

Which of the seven deadly sins are you most susceptible to?

Lust. And greed. Actually, both; I can be really greedy. Oh, and gluttony. I can be tremendously gluttonous.

Who would you rather be stuck in a lift with - Courtney Love, PJ Harvey, Björk or Tori Amos?

PJ definitely. Firstly, I think she is unbelievably amazing; I just adore her records and I play them all the time. I think she's really underrated. I heard her on some radio show the other night and she's got a really beautiful, soft calm voice and think she wouldn't add to my frustrations at being stuck in a lift.

If Nick Cave had asked you to do a murder ballad with him, would you have done?

Absolutely. I was sick that he didn't ask me! I was shouting when I first heard that song he'd done with Kylie. Every time it came on the radio the boys could hear me yelling, "It should have been me!"

So you wouldn't have minded if he'd had to murder you in the video?

Maybe I could have got to cave his head in with a rock while he floated about in some water wearing lacy underwear!

Who or what is your one true love?

My partner. And my mum and my dad. And my granny!

If you could be any cartoon character, who would you be and why?

Yosemite Sam. I think he kind of looks like me.

But you haven't got a moustache?

No, but I'd look good with one.

What was the last album you bought?

'Saint Jack' by Nectarine No. 9 and the Kids soundtrack (controversial American film about streetwise kids, opening here in the spring).

And how much is enough money?

Enough money would probably be enough to comfortably buy lots of bottles of win when you're out doing your shopping.

By Cathi Unsworth