5 Minutes With The Pigeon Detectives

Indie rock frontrunners The Pigeon Detectives returned with their first new album in six years this summer. Famed for their incredible live energy, the Leeds formed favourites have been a constant figure on the live circuit for nearly two decades and don't plan on stopping any time soon.

We caught up with the band to discuss 'TV Show', their upcoming headline tour and more.

Check out the full interview below.

Firstly, your new record ‘TV Show’ was released last month – what has the reaction been like so far?

The reaction has been great. It's always a nervy time when you release new music into the world, but the reaction to 'TV Show' has been everything we could hope for. We knew we had a great collection of tunes and it's amazing to have that affirmed by our fans, who seem to be loving it!

There were quite a few pressings made for it – including Blood Records and even a special Leeds United variant – how important is physical media when you’re planning a new record?

Growing up there was nothing we loved more as a bunch of mates than going to our local record shop and spending what little money we had on CDs and vinyl. CDs have obviously gone the way of the dodo now, but we are really happy to see that vinyl sales seem to be on the ascendancy these days, so we always try to make sure that we have the best looking and feeling product that we possibly can make.

The Blood Records copy sold out almost instantly – that must be pretty reassuring to see, or do you try and avoid checking sales?

Obviously we were made aware when it had sold out (record labels are always speedy with good news!), which was amazing, but we don't get bogged down by the numbers. The fact that anyone listens to our stuff is brilliant to us, so we're generally happy with whatever numbers we get.

You toured it across some record stores – how was it going back to smaller rooms and being up close and personal with the fans?

We loved it! We made our name in tiny, sweaty venues, so the whole thing was a complete joy. Being up close and personal with the fans and performing rough and ready punk rock shows is our happy place, so for us it was great. We had fans coming up to us at the shows saying they had listened to us for fifteen years and they met their spouse at a show, or our songs got them through a rough time and it's always overwhelming to discover the impact we've had on people we don't even know. But that's the power of music.

Later in the year you’re heading out on a big headline tour – what can fans expect from that?

The usual Pigeon Madness... sweat, energy and bangers by the bucketload. We built our reputation on high-octane, memorable gigs and we have no plan to take our foot off the pedal with regards to the shows. People know us as a formidable live act and we want to always have that in our arsenal.

Does it become more difficult with each new album to curate a setlist that keeps both the fans and yourselves happy?

Even though we will be playing lots of new stuff and reflecting where we are as a band in 2023, we're not a band who would deprive their fans of songs they have grown up listening to and that mean so much to them, just because we are on a new album campaign, so we generally try to get a healthy balance of old and new to give our fans the best experience possible.

What else can we expect from The Pigeon Detectives across 2023 and beyond?

We have the headline tour in November, which we're dead excited about. We're currently hatching plans for 2024, which may or may not include a big home town show and hitting as many festivals as we can when the summer arrives. By that time the songs from TV Show will have fully bedded in and will have integrated themselves into the live set seamlessly. That's the plan anyway. As for beyond that, we're just going to keep doing this for as long as we still enjoy it and enjoy each other. I mean, after 35 years of friendship and nearly 20 years as a band, if we haven't gotten fed up of each other by now, we probably never will!

Final tickets for The Pigeon Detectives are on sale now.

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Hey - I'm Callum. Fan of The National, collector of vinyl, season ticket holder at Leeds United, owner of Dougal the cat.

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