- Having started out making your first music in Swindon over thirty years ago, you are now back. What’s the story in between?
Whilst you can be influenced by living in the same town or village all your life, my lyrical pallet has been inadvertently broadened by geographical difference. My first move was to London, which was a very different place then, less commercial, less dangerous, less expensive and more driven by a real and vibrant music scene. Next was ten years in The Bowery, the underground musical heart of New York as a journalist and musician recording with the likes of the E-Street Band and playing support to Christy Moore and The Psychedelic Furs. Stops in Swindon, Brighton and more recently Berlin, my time is now divided between a house in Toulouse and making music in The West of England.
- Your current musical vehicle is The AK-Poets, how did that come about.
The AK-Poets was the band I formed in Berlin, which had a much gentler, acoustic path compared with the UK version, which has a harder, stripped back rock and roll feel, whilst retaining the continuing influence of, I guess, The Clash, The Beatles and Tom Waits – not necessarily in that order mind!
- So have you released any albums along the way?
Yes, I have released three albums via Revolver Records. Firstly LoveJunk which some people say is a good party album, even if it does have ‘Gas Chamber’ on it, but mainly is a collection of immediate, up-tempo songs, a couple of which are still in the current set, such as ‘The Madness of Love’ and ‘Tomahawk Junky’. Next came My Crucial Execution, a more acoustic pop album along the lines of Aztec Camera or perhaps Steve Earle. Jesus Was a Socialist was my American album, more political, more subversive, covering such subjects as the despicably pointless Vietnam War and the equally ghastly NRA – along with reflective songs like ‘Times Square’ and ‘According to Elvis.’
- And you have a new EP out, The Ghost of Corelli?
Yes, it’s a five-track EP out on local label, Secret Chord Records and is a pretty good representation of what The AK-Poets are about live. It has some delicate moments (‘In An Empty Room’ and ‘Sweet Dream,’) a couple of more rock and roll numbers including Cassius Clay which, inexplicably, appears to be a big hit with the boxing fraternity. The play out song, 11,000 Martyred Virgins, was described by Sam Bates – the engineer where it was recorded at The Ladder Factory – as “King Crimson on acid.” So, in all, a considerable range of colour.
- What now for the band?
More, gigs, more writing, and hopefully good sales of this release so we can embarked on recording a full album at some point in the near future. Offers of financial assistance, alcohol and northern prostitutes are greatly appreciated.
Okay, I’ll see what I can do, thank you for chatting to us.
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original posted in The Ocelot September ’14 –