Leeds alternative four-piece Pulled Apart By Horses have been pushing their assertive and honest brand of music to listeners since 2008. This month, the Brits return to our shores for a run of headline performances. On the eve of the shows, Killyourstereo.com caught up with Tom Hudson to discuss career insights, past injuries, and the importance of not drinking before you perform.
I saw on Facebook, last month, you’ve been writing. How’s everything coming along?
Yeah, it’s going really well. We’ve been writing and working on some new ideas since Tommy, our new drummer, joined at the beginning of the year. We waited until we’d finished the festival season to get properly stuck in though. We went to this weird little cabin in Wales in the middle of no-where, took our gear and loads of booze & food, and locked ourselves away and wrote some new tunes. We’ll be road testing a few of them soon.
You’re coming back to Australia this month. We’re glad to have you on our shores again. What’s something you’re hoping to do this time that you haven’t done before while here?
We’re so psyched to be be coming back over. Soundwave festival last year was an absolute blast but it’ll great to be back and playing some of our own little sweat fest shows. We’ve done loads of stuff when we’ve been over before – James and I ended up doing a massive bike ride round the coast in Melbourne. I’d quite like to check out some tourist stuff – I still haven’t seen the Sydney Opera House or the Harbour Bridge….. bloody tourists, eh?
It’s no secret the band is renowned for your energetic performances. There have been injuries along the way. What’s a performance that sticks out, when even on stage, you were thinking, ‘Maybe we’ve pushed it too far?’ Or is that concern entirely left for once you’re offstage?
Ahhh man, we’ve had a few of those moments – a lot of them are accidental or our own fault for getting carried away. One that stands out was the second time we played Leeds Fest, James got carried away at the end of the set and smashed his guitar to bits and then chucked it straight into the crowd without even looking [or] hesitating. It ended up being all right and no-one got hurt but he’d forgotten that he was standing right by our ex drummer’s wife and 1 year old daughter (who were side of stage) as he smashed it to bits! I’ve had one where I climbed up a barrier mid song to jump into the crowd but everyone was still facing the stage when I jumped so I ended up falling into the floor and falling pretty heavy onto my feet – probably should’ve thought about that move a bit more (laughs).
Being in a band requires a lot sacrifice, what’s your current balance like between band and outside commitments?
We’ve all made a lot of sacrifices for the band, especially the early days when we were trying to keep a float with day jobs. But, it’s all worth it and we’re in it for the long run. I think this weeds out the people that really want to do it! We all try and get by without trying to get a ‘real’ job but it’ll probably always be a bit unbalanced. Me, Rob and Tommy are all designers and do artwork, screen-printing, music videos and other stuff on the side of the band, either for a bit of extra support or just for own our creative practice.
What have been some of the biggest insights and lessons you’ve gathered from touring and performing so far in your career?
One big thing is to try and be savvy with your money, luckily we’ve been able to do a lot of our own merch designs, album art work, music videos, demo’s ourselves so that saves some pennies. Another thing is being a good judge of character, there’s so many people in the music industry that want to take you for a ride, but if you can sniff it out and try and avoid them then it’ll save you a lot of hassle down the line. Luckily, most people we’ve worked with have been awesome, genuine and actually fans of music so it’s been all right.
One final thing is that we’ve slowly learnt that getting pissed before you play a show is normally a bad idea (on the odd occasion it works out) – it’s all about balance. Being tipsy enough to feel loose goosey but not being too drunk to remember how to play your own songs! We’ve all been there.
What are some areas that you’d like to see improved to help up and coming bands?
It’s really hard to tour and make things work when you’re starting out, unless you’ve been lucky and got loads of hype from the word go or something. We would just make it work earlier on by speaking to friends and other bands we knew in different towns/cities to get places to crash for the night when we’ve been on the road.
Favourite album(s) of 2015 so far?
Wand – 1000 Days
They’re a fuzzy psychedelic band from the states who are pals with Ty Segall and all of that scene. They’ve got a really unique sound: super heavy and fuzzed up in some places and then totally tripped out, psychedelic and Ziggy Stardust-eqsue in other places.Another awesome album that came out this year is from our pals Blacklisters with their album ‘Adult’ – it’s a right slab of awesomeness. Their riffs are dirtier and heavier than Jabba the Hut’s ass! We see them as Leeds’ very own Jesus Lizard. Check them out, they’ll blow you away!
Catch Pulled Apart By Horses on tour this month. Information via: http://www.xiiitouring.com/