INTERVIEW: The Pigeon Detectives

The boys are back in town! The Pigeon Detectives formed in 2002 and have soared the indie spectrum ever since with roaring bangers like ‘I’m Not Sorry’ and This Is an Emergency’. This year, the five likely lads from Leeds returned with new album Broken Glances and a special ten year anniversary tour of Wait For Me. We caught up with guitarist, Oliver Main to see what’s going down…

First of all, welcome back! It’s been 4 years since We Met at Sea was released – what have you been up to since then?
Thanks. Well first of all we spent a year and half promoting the album and touring the UK and Europe. After that we had a little break from music to recharge the batteries and do ‘normal’ stuff like hanging out with friends, going to the pub, watching Leeds Utd not get promoted, etc. Then it was back into the practice room to start writing Broken Glances.

You’ve graced 2017 with 10 track album Broken Glances – can you tell us a bit about it?
It’s a more introspective and considered record than our previous offerings. With us all being 10 years older than the people who made Wait For Me we felt like we wanted to make a record that reflected our change in tastes as we’ve grown up and probably our change in personalities too. This tended to make us lean towards a more thoughtful and ethereal sound but we’ve never lost our unashamed love of pop songs so it was a balancing act of scratching our more creative/artistic itch, as it were, with keeping that pop sensibility.

How has the response been? You’ve taken a slightly different approach this time with some slower tracks and a moody black and white video to accompany track ‘Enemy Lines’. What encouraged the change?
The response has been pleasantly surprising. You never know how people are going to react to a new record anyway but especially when you go out on a limb a little and make something that perhaps people weren’t expecting then there’s extra trepidation about how the album will be received. But the reviews (that I’ve seen) have on the whole been positive and the gigs are still selling out so we must have done something right, I guess.

2017 also marked the 10 year anniversary of Wait for Me – probably your most notorious album – along side a tour of the record. What tracks are you looking forward to playing the most and have you got any surprises planned for fans?
Notorious? There’s a backhanded compliment if ever I’ve heard one. It’ll be good to play some of the album tracks of the first record as they rarely get a look in on our setlists nowadays with us having 5 albums worth of material to choose from.. As for surprises, we could tell you but then it wouldn’t be a surprise anymore.

The tour finishes with double dates in your hometown, Leeds, on Fri 3 & Sun 5 November. What sort of antics do you expect from your fellow Loiners?
Oh we wouldn’t want to put pressure on people by having expectations.. Just turn up, have a good time and don’t be a dick.

What are the plans for the Saturday off?
Nothing special, the usual really after a big Friday. Probably spend the morning throwing up, spend the afternoon with family and friends, spend the evening cringing at what you state you got in the night before.

You also played a pretty impressive set at Live @ Leeds earlier this year in April – how was it?
It was great, we always enjoy playing that festival. We’ve done it that many times now we’re pretty much ambassadors for it. We got the opportunity to play in a venue we’d not played before so that was a good experience too. Not overly keen on daytime gigs but the crowd seemed to enjoy it and it all went swimmingly I think.

Was the response from the gig another reason to release more music?
Not particularly, we just enjoy making music and that’s the only reason we need. Of course it helps if there’s people out there that actually give a shit and luckily for us they do.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve done or seen on tour, and do you plan to top that on this one?
What goes on tour, stays on tour. Our lips are sealed.

When can we expect a tour for Broken Glances?
Well we’ve already done a little tour at the time of release but we’re considering doing another in the new year playing some of the tracks we haven’t done live yet. To be honest, it’s been a busy year and with the 10 year anniversary of Wait For Me we wouldn’t want to burn the fans out too much with too much touring. We’ll see if there’s a demand for another tour so soon after WFM and decide what we want to do then.

Finally, do you have any advice for other indie bands making a big comeback in 2017/ early 2018?
I’m not sure anyone needs my advice but if someone should desire it i’d just say to be true to yourself, make the music want to make and if people like great, if they don’t… fuck ‘em.

The Pigeon Detectives head out on their Wait For Me Anniversary tour
this Autumn. For more info and tickets visit

Harley Young

Harley Young

19 year old content writer in Leeds, UK.
Harley Young

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