As they head out to Australia for their inaugural tour down under, Leeds’ Pulled Apart By Horses bring with them a reputation for explosive live shows and the injuries band members suffer on stage. Fêted by Some of the UK’s biggest bands such as Biffy Clyro and Muse who have taken them under their respective wings, Tone Deaf had a chat to drummer Lee Vincent.
Your live shows are apparently something that has to be seen to be believed. What’s the worst injury you’ve suffered on stage or falling off one?
James [Brown – Lead Guitar] is definitely the most accident prone member and ended up in hospital for a week once with an infected knee. So we taught the songs to our mate and took him with us instead. James wasn’t happy. Aside from that people are always taking chunks out of themselves here and there.
It’s become a bit of a myth about us now that we all end up bleeding all over the place because there’s so many injuries, I think some people may be quite disappointed.
What were some of the highlights of touring with Muse? Was it a surreal experience to be playing with a stadium band?
We only did one date with them and surreal was definitely a word that you could use. It was a trip to play to that many people and we were received politely. To be honest I didn’t realise how old a lot of Muse fans are though, I think we scared some of them.
How did the band name come about? Is it a reference to the Thom Yorke song“Feeling Pulled Apart By Horses”?
This is your first Australian tour – are there any Australian bands that have been an influence on you?
I don’t listen to them anymore but when I was young I really dug Silverchair. I was also massively jealous of them because I think we’re about the same age.
I really can’t think of many Australian bands! How about Nick Cave? Hes a bad ass. I saw Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds a couple of years ago and its one of the best things Ive ever seen. Those guys are so cool, I hope i’m that cool when I grow up. Are any of the Bad Seeds Australian??
Take us through your songwriting process – do songs come from jams or are they brought in to the rehearsal space already formed?
Parts of songs, riffs and general ideas are brought to practise and we create the songs as a band. It all feels very natural and I feel lucky that it comes so easy to us. Anybody who’s been in bands knows how arduous a process it can be if there’s no chemistry and natural dynamic between bandmates.
Our problem is that we tour so much we never really get to write but at the moment we’re concentrating on our 2nd album and the songs are coming thick and fast.
You have played a ridiculously high number of gigs in your relatively short existence. How many are you up to now? Do you struggle to capture your live experience on record?
God, I don’t know what we’re up to now. Between 400 and 500 I think! We pretty much hit the road as soon as we started and I think we toured for the 1st few months with just 5 songs. But we’re firm believers in the notion that a band is only as good as their live show so if you see us live that’s when you’ll see us at our best.
As far as recording goes, we were nervous about translating the energy and vibe of the live show to an album. Somehow we did it though, thanks to our producer James Kenosha for the most part!
What have you learned from touring with the likes of Biffy Clyro and Future of the Left?
The only thing we’ve really learnt is a sense of professionalism that maybe we didn’t have before. We feel very like-minded with those guys. We value our integrity, we take our live show very seriously and we don’t treat people like shit. Just simple life rules really haha.
Are you able to make a living solely from the band?
In a very loose sense. You find a way to supplement your income from working in bars or doing design work. We are very lucky that we can do this as a job but we do survive on pretty much fuck all and have done for a long time. We are in no way complaining though! Also we have very understanding girlfriends/wives. That helps a lot.
Have you begun work on a follow up to your debut? If so what can we expect?
Yeah, we’ve just moved into a new practise space and we spend a few nights a week in their fucking about with new stuff. So far we have about 8 songs, and we’re happy with how its going. It’s only when vocals are added that we’ll know which will make the album though. The album won’t be a drastic departure from our debut but it will be a definite progression though. It’ll probably be played a bit better too.
Have any of you ever been arrested? If so, what for?
Oh definitely not, we’re all very good boys haha.
What are you most looking forward to doing while you’re in Australia apart from playing shows?
I know it’s very touristy but I definitely want to visit a zoo and have a squeeze on a Koala. Do you reckon they’ll let me?? Apart from that I have some old friends to catch up with and we’re looking forward to making some new ones too.
Thursday 10 March – Annandale Hotel – Sydney
With special guests Regular John
Tickets from the venue ph 02 95501078 or online www.annandalehotel.com
Friday 11 March – The Tote – Melbourne.
With special guests Dozers, and Barbarion
Tickets from the venue at The Tote front bar, Polyester (city and Fitzroy). Also from the Corner Box Office (57 Swan St Richmond 12-8 Mon-Sat), online at www.cornerhotel.com or ph 9427 9198
‘Pulled Apart By Horses’ out now through Shock