The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world







Pulled Apart by Horses creates music that makes you feel alive, pure and simple and they're coming back to the land downunder to treat us to another sonic battering in October. If you haven't heard them - whereon earth have you been! We caught up with singer/guitarist Tom Hudson to find out what Leeds' finest are up to...

Mark: Many thanks for talking to us today. It’s always great to have you back down here and we’re glad that you’re making us a regular stop off. What brings you back? What’s the best thing about the land down-under?


Tom: We’re absolutely psyched to be coming back over to Aus! It’ll be our third trip over now! The first time we came over we played a few gigs and a festival called Golden Plains, then last year we did the Soundwave tour and a few side shows with our pals Biffy Clyro. We got asked a few months ago to make the trip over and none of us were expecting it at all - it’s pretty tough for a UK band to skip over to the other side of the world so we’re very lucky! We love the Aussies and have had an absolute blast every time we’ve been over. Great senses of humour (sarcastic bastards like us Brits), amazing weather & a good taste in music without the fickleness that some UK crowds have.


Mark: This time the tour takes in dates in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane – a quick four day trip – is there any chance of playing Adelaide and Perth dates sometime in the future?


Tom: We would love to play everywhere! That’s what was good about the Soundwave festival tour as it hit all the main places rather than a select few. Unfortunately we won’t be doing those this time round but we would love to try and hit them up the next time we’re back. If there is a next time, haha!


Mark: You are a band that likes to tour - tell us about the road – what keeps you out there and what are the best and worst aspects of touring?


Tom: For the first few years of the band we toured constantly, didn’t really have proper homes and lived in a van. Now things have a bit more of a flow to then, we just tour for intense chunks of time and then have time off around it to ourselves or write and rehearse. It feels a lot more balanced and helps keep your sanity in check. The best parts of touring is getting the chance to travel to places you wouldn’t normally get the chance to normally and getting to meet and hang out with all sorts of different cultures and characters! I guess one of the worst aspects is not having much personal space / head space, it gets pretty intense when you’re living on the road and in each others pockets but saying that it makes you appreciate things a lot more when you get back home after it all!


Mark: Are you still just as crazy onstage or is Pulled Apart by Horses 2015 more refined!?


Tom: Our sets have probably evolved if you compare it to when we first started out but not necessarily for the worst at all. We play longer, paced out sets, have learned to hone our musicianship a lot more and can probably do a lot more than we used to be able to. But I think we’re still the same band when it comes to spontaneity and energy. A lot of it depends on the crowd we’re playing to as well. If they’re really energetic then we buzz of that and the energy just grows and grows. We’re probably a bit more spatially aware now which means we don’t spear each other on the end of ours guitars as much, haha!


Mark: Last time we spoke you were just about to head over for Soundwave and about to start concentrating on your third album ‘Blood’ – was it exciting to see that chart over in the UK?


Tom: Yeah, that was amazing & totally unexpected too. We’re genuinely surprised whenever anything like that happens - we’re really grateful for any praise we receive and something like that is an extra bonus for us.


Mark: The album breaks new ground sonically and lyrically and in our opinion it’s your best so far – tell us about the progression of the band, does this feel like a giant leap forward?

Tom: Thanks for the kind words! We put a lot into the album and it was great to have an extended amount of time to experiment, write and record. We constantly trying to evolve and try new things out as a band - I don’t really see much point in regurgitating the same thing again and again. Trying new sounds and new ways of creating keeps us on our toes and keeps things fresh!


Mark: How did you approach the creation process this time around? Was how ‘Blood’ came together very different from your first two albums?


Tom: The first album was more of capturing the songs we had at the time. We locked ourselves away for a week in between touring and blasted it out. The second album ‘Tough Love’ was more about working with a producer. We got the chance to work with the amazing Gil Norton (Pixies, Foo Fighters) and was the first time we had worked in that way before. We did loads of pre-production with him and worked together to hone in some of the songs and make a lot of interesting changes to what we already had. It was pretty intense, and quite a challenge to have somebody else come in and write with us - he was sort of our fifth member for that album. With ‘Blood’ we wanted to take control of things more. We took things that we had learned from Gil and other producers before and applied it to writing things ourselves. We recorded it close to home in Leeds with a good pal Matt Peel and gave ourselves way more time than we’ve ever had to record. It allowed us to experiment with loads of sounds, textures, layers and me and Rob pushed ourselves vocally to try different things out. We still wanted it to sound like PABH but we also wanted to have the confidence to mess around and tread new ground.

Mark: Tell us about your favourite tracks and what will make it into the set when you come and see us?

Tom: We’ll be playing a mix of everything really. We always do. There’s nothing worse than seeing a band you love and them playing a whole set of new songs or stuff you haven’t heard before. I guess from the new album we’ve been enjoying playing ‘Skull Noir’ & ‘You Want It’ quite a bit recently but it always changes about!


Mark: SO the big question has to be when do we get our next fix? Are you working on new material?


Tom: We’ve got a new drummer - (an old school pal of ours) Tommy Davidson who’s been with us since the beginning of the year. Even since the first week he joined we have been jamming a lot of new ideas with him. We’ve written quite a bit of new stuff but we’re still in the early stages of figuring stuff out and seeing what happens naturally, but it’s all really exciting stuff for us!


Mark: You’ve played with some great musicians over the years – who has been the most inspiring?


Tom: We’ve been incredibly lucky with some of the people / bands we’ve got to play with. I think we learn a lot from most people we’re out with to be honest. For the early years of the band we tour with Biffy Clyro, Future Of The Left, Blood Red Shoes. We learnt so much from them and still keep in contact a lot and consider them good friends as well as musical peers.


Mark: What keeps you going as a musicians?


Tom: Listening to new music, being inspired, friendship, the journey into the unknown, our fans or anyone who checks out our musical or comes to see us, the hunger and need to create, the release of playing live, booze.


Mark: Is it harder and harder to pick a set list especially as the new material is so damn good?


Tom: It’s definitely a hard task trying to write a set now when you’re 3 albums in, haha! It’s like a parent being asked to pick your favourite child or something. Like I said before we have the classic PABH songs in the set and then try to rotate stuff around a bit to keep us on our toes!


Mark: What piece of music you have created most defines you as a band if someone wanted to check you out for the first time?


Tom: That’s a tough one really! I guess a track that a lot of people hear first is ‘High Five, Swan Dive, Nose Dive’ but I think it’s too hard to sum us up in one track as we go off in so many directions, haha! I’d say one from every album - ‘High Five’, ‘V.E.N.O.M’ and ‘Hot Squash’.


Mark: What is your greatest fear for the world?


Tom: The people at the top, the people with the power to change things for better or for worse and usually go with the latter!


Mark: Who is your most enduring influence? Who helps fuel that creativity?


Tom: I think I would probably have to say Nirvana. They are the reason I wanted to make music and I can still listen to them now for the 10000000000000000th time and still feel the same way.


Mark: What is your most disgracefully rock and roll moment?


Tom: Haha, which one do I pick? We played a festival in the Netherlands a good few years back, we were on at about 2 in the morning, we’d been there for hours and we got given 2 bottles of Jack Daniels. You can do the math. It was probably one of the worst shows we played - we got back to the hotel pissed & pissed off and lost our minds. I can’t really remember a lot of it but I do remember we ended up making the dresser into a giant uegee board and for some reason I threw the room phone out of the window. Our TM was trying to ring us in the morning but as the phone was in a nearby bush he couldn’t get through and had to kick the door in. Idiots.


Mark: What is your ultimate musical ambition?


Tom: To write an album that I am 100% proud of (which probably won’t happen but will keep spurring me on!)


Mark: If you could compose with anyone living or dead who would it be?


Tom: Kurt Cobain OR Josh Homme.


Mark: Can music still have the power to change the world in 2015?


Tom: I hope so! Music is a very powerful thing. It seems like the good stuff comes in big waves though as it doesn’t feel like there’s been one for a while. Fingers crossed…..


Mark: What will you get up to in your downtime down under?


Tom: It sounds cliche, but the first time we were in Melbourne our apartment had it’s own BBQ so we went to a nearby store and made a bad ass BBQ (if I do say so myself) Rob made these garlic chilli burgers that were amazing! Also, last time we were over we hired some bikes and did a few coastal rides which was awesome & a cool way to catch some of the country in a small space of time.


Mark: What are your plans for 2015 and beyond?


Tom: Well we’re just coming to the end of our festival season and will be going back into hibernation mode for a bit to write some new stuff. We don’t tend to plan too much so I guess we’ll just see what happens from here on!


Mark: From what you’ve learned so far what is the most valuable advice you’ve been given as a musician?

Tom: One that has stuck with me the most is that as a band / musician…… ‘You are the boss!’ The more you get stuck into the weird world of the ‘music industry’ the more and more people you get telling you what they think you should be doing OR trying make decisions on your behalf without even asking you. The best thing to do is keep honest, keep it real and remember that the whole reason you’re in the position you are is because of you and your music.


Mark: What is the meaning of life for you in 2015?


Tom: ‘Life’s a lot of shit…. when you look at it.’ (Quoting Monty Python) For me personally it is to do what I want, stay productive, keep busy but also know when to chill, try and look for the positives in everything. Nobody likes a sad act.





Tom spoke to Mark Rockpit


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