R13: When did you first become interested in playing music and had you been in a band prior to working solo?
P: Like many musicians will say, as far as I know I've always been interested. The very first bit of video footage we have of me as a 3 year old child features me smacking the shit out of my toy piano singing gibberish, and I know for a fact that at the age of 5 I was writing songs and envisaging what my album cover was going to look like in the future. But back then I'm sure the album cover I was dreaming of didn't feature woods with entrails lying around all over the place. Ha ha.
As for playing in bands, yeah, I've been in a few. The last was a noise/funk two piece called 'Concentration Champ'. We released a couple of singles and toured Europe, but we broke up earlier this year.

R13: When did you first realise that what you were playing could be something that could be successful and appreciated by others?
P: After playing countless, horrible acoustic nights after my first arrival in Leeds, I realised that I was never going to get anywhere going down that road, and it kinda disillusioned me somewhat. I took about 3 years away from playing, then finally returned with a full new set of songs and a new style. I was lucky enough by that stage to have formed relationships with promoters who could get me gigs with bands rather than other acoustic artists, and so I guess the reaction of the audiences there made me thing maybe I had something. Or maybe people are just mad?

R13: A lot of the record is reminiscent of Nick Drake, is he an influence of yours?
P: This can be a very frustrating subject for me. I listened to Nick Drake a lot when I was about 19/20 (I'm 26 now) and so obviously once you have listened to someone they have to have influenced you some way or another. But the truth is, there are people a lot closer to me who have influenced my guitar playing especially whom I would class as a much heavier 'influence' than Nick Drake. And so, his name pops up in review after review, but obviously many people don't know Michael Rossiter (whom I class as my main influence when it comes to guitar playing), and so revert to the first obvious choice which is Nick Drake. It's a shame that really, because any man who sings with a high falsetto heavy voice gets Jeff Buckley, anyone who finger picks an acoustic guitar and plays sad songs gets Nick Drake. Maybe it's something to do with being dead?

R13: Which other artists have been an influence on the style and sound of your music?
P: Well as I mentioned above, my guitar playing is heavily influenced by a guy called Michael Rossiter. I had the privilege of sharing a house with him for one year (in the period I wasn't playing) and I could hear him playing the guitar in his bedroom on a Sunday morning. Unknown to him I would be in envy wishing I could do the stuff he could, and so I'd be secretly semi-playing along with what he was doing. That gave me the footing to develop what I do now.
But I listen to such a bizarre variety of music that it's difficult to pin-point any specific influences as such, but at the moment I'm listening to a lot of Joanna Newsom, Eiger, Boards Of Canada, Daughters!, Trencher and my new favourite album right now is 'Gulag Orkestar' by Beirut which I thing is one of the most inspiring albums to come out in a long time. It's completely mind-blowing.

R13: Some of the songs, like 'Valkommen' have unusual titles, for the ignorant amongst us what are the translations and why did you choose some non-English titles?
P: Over the past three years I've had a bizarre link with Sweden. My girlfriend is Swedish and with a previous band we ended up doing a couple of dates with Jeniferever who are also from Sweden. I took it upon myself to start learning to talk Swedish, and then took a trip to a beautiful place in the north of Sweden called 'Älvsbyn' (three guesses which track on the album that became).
I then ended up recording 'Greenfly' and 'A Place On The Map' with Kristofer Jönsson from Jeniferever in Sweden 2 years later, and then just did a UK tour with them.
'Välkommen' just means 'welcome' in Swedish. I thought it would be nice to pay homage to the country that seems to have had so much to do with my music over the past 3 years.

R13: You're playing some festivals in Sweden and The Netherlands this summer, how are you looking forward to the challenge of playing to audience who may not know your music?
P: I am looking forward to it. I've played in both Sweden and Holland once before and I really enjoyed both places. As a whole I think it's interesting, sometimes daunting playing to a bunch of people who don't know your music, but I'd rather do that than play to a room full of friends, and they generally support you no matter what, whereas the new people give you the real reaction you are looking for.

R13: What do you think makes your live shows worth seeing?
P: As one man and his guitar, it's obviously hard to do anything visually stimulating, but many of my songs are quite dark in their themes. I have a tendency to sing about death quite a lot, and so I try my best to create an atmosphere live. Really it's entirely up to the audience. I've had shows where you can hear a pin drop throughout and it's been an amazing experience to play. Then I've had the ones where it's like playing to a beehive and so the chance of getting across the true meanings of my songs is a thankless task. I've been playing live with a cellist and glockenspiel player lately which has put a slightly different slant on things.

R13: Your press release says that live shows have helped to hone your performance, to what extent have the opinions of the fans in the audience helped to influence your songwriting?
P:I wouldn't say the audience have influenced my song writing as such. I obviously take a mental note of what seems to be working and what doesn't.

R13: Do you worry about the opinions of the music press and fans?
P: I'd be lying if I said no. I'm a bit of a worrier in general, and so that's probably why my songs take such a negative theme.
Of course if people say horrible things about my music it's hard not to take it personally, as after all I'm the only person responsible for it and I put my heart and soul into everything I do. But you just have to take it on the chin. At the end of the day a review is one person's (loud) opinion and the people are the ones who decide if they like it or not. If we all listened to reviews as our sole reason as to whether or not to buy a record, I don't think much would get sold.

R13: What are your future plans now that 'Vultures' has been released?
P: To have a bit of a break at first. I have a couple of new tracks coming up on compilations, just started making my first music video, I'm appearing on the TV soon, then I'm off to play a few shows in Europe etc. So still quite busy. But I guess all plans lead to the next record.

R13: Thanks for your time and good luck with the album.