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Tuesday, 31 January 2012

In conversation with 4 Past Midnight

Mainy - So that's you guys back in the saddle again? How long has that been since you and Fred have shared a stage as 4PM?

Peter – Yeah, back in the saddle for more mayhem, torture and mental abuse. You would think by now we would know better. I suppose we're gluttons for punishment as they say.
It's been a while since Fred and me shared a stage. Probably 2006.
It's good to be back together. It works.

Mainy - What was it that acted as the catalyst for this reformation?

Peter – Well I'd sworn to myself that I was never doing it again. It was always two steps forward and three back.
We were always falling out with each other, falling out with people from outside the band, dealing with the general hassles that every band has to deal with and I'd got to the stage that I was tired of it.
I left it behind me, but people kept asking when we were playing again and telling me they missed the band so in hindsight I've got to say that the well meaning pressure from them kept the band lurking about in my head.
The real catalyst, the thing that was the tipping point, was when I was sitting in the car outside the supermarket waiting for my wife to come back and I found a copy of 'guilty as charged' and slipped it on.
I honestly hadn't listened to it in over two years, but when it was on I got that buzz and started thinking 'damn, that's a good set of songs right there.'
From that moment I started thinking about the good times and tucking all the negative crap to the back of my mind.
There was only one problem though. Fred and myself hadn't spoken in about six years after a major fallout and when I think about 4pm it's always Fred and me in the band.
If the band was going to get back together then it had to have us at the core.
So as I had already been thinking of getting in touch him and trying to mend some fences and maybe this was the time to kill two birds with one stone.
In all honesty I didn't even know if he would speak to me, but then coincidently a few days later my wife was on msn and spoke to Fred and told him that I was looking to get back in touch.
A week later we met up in the Solid Rock in Glasgow and that was that. We simply put the past behind us and 4pm as a band were back for about the 1000th time.
Fred and me have a sort of musical soul mate thing going on. We love and hate each other, sometimes at the same time. It can be frosty, but most times we get on great as we know each other inside and out.

Mainy - You want to introduce the new guys to us?

Peter - Yeah ...we have two new recruits who have really opened the sound of the band up. We have Brian Cartwrite on lead guitar and the duel guitar sound between Fred and Brian now sounds really powerful. Stevie Goldsack is playing bass for us. He's rock solid.

Mainy - Instead of sneaking in the back door you have a comeback gig sorted in Glasgow and are returning with a bit of a bang. I mean it couldn't be described as dipping your toe in to see how the water feels. It's more a cannonball into the deep end.
So do you want to fill us in on when, where and who is playing at it?

Peter - Yea , We have never been a band that just sits back. It's never really been our style. If we go for it then it has to be full throttle. Anything less than 100% doesn't cut it with us and I suppose we wouldn't have it any other way. Full throttle or not at all. That could be our motto.
The reunion gig is at the Classic Grand Saturday April 7th.
It's Sandie Noone who is promoting it so we are in safe hands. She's managed to get it as an over fourteens show to. It's a top venue a capacity of 400, but what the hell, if you're going to put on a reunion gig then you have to go for it.
The supports are top drawer Glasgow acts. We've got Hateful who really don't need an introduction. I've always thought that they were one of the best live acts that we have who were only matched by The Red Eyes.......and we are really pleased to say that we have them to.
So there you have it. A night of premier Punk rock and roll. If I wasn't in the band I would be in the audience....enough said

Mainy - From a previous discussion we had I know that the band is keen to draw the attention of a younger crowd and aren't just looking to ride the nostalgia train, but how are you going to do that?

The thing with the younger folks is that they want to see live music but most of the gigs are 18+ and they cant get in.
They have the hunger, the passion and want to get right in there and participate, but they are locked out.
It's something that does my head in. The music should be for everyone. So we are trying. Along with Sandie, to address that.
We are going to be passing out flyers and free CDs to them.
We know money is tight for them, and everyone else. So it's mutually beneficial to get them onside with us. They get a CD and we get an expanded audience.
Hopefully they can appreciate what we are about and go home, listen to the CD, check us out online and then make the effort to come to the gig.
They will be made welcome.
They're the next generation who will carry the torch. Full respect to them.
To disregard them is ageist in itself. I remember being their age and I don't think things have changes as much as the media want us to believe.
Feral kids? Give me a break. They're us thirty years ago.

Mainy - As a band you always had a problem with the exclusive attitude that often rears it's ugly head in the punk scene. Have you seen much evidence of that sort of crap this time?

Peter – So far I've not witnessed much of anything because we have not been gigging yet , but I'm sure it will raise its ugly head at some point, Unfortunately it always does.
Hopefully I'm wrong. In fact I sincerely hope I am and it might be different this time around.
Hell, we're all middle aged men now. Surely we can all act like it.

Mainy - Obviously at the moment you will be concentrating on the comeback show, but what do you have planned for after that.
More gigs? New material?

Peter – Yeah, we're going to record a new album right now. It's set for release around November this year on STP Records. Stu has always been good to us and he has a solid roster of acts. It's cool that we are doing it with him.
We've a few other gigs lined up and hopefully more to add shortly. A two week tour around November time is also being talked about, and hopefully The Angst from Florida will be doing it with us.

Mainy - The last tour of the USA sort of broke the back of that line up.
Would you try it again or are you more of the attitude that if they want you then they can do the running?

Peter - No no. I want to break it on some level there. We have fans dotted all over the states and I hope to get 4PM back stateside in 2013 and play to them.
It's a hard place to tour and takes a hell of a lot of organizing, a lot of money to fall back on and a lot of miles to be eaten up on the road, but I believe we can get it done.
We also want to get ourselves over to Germany, France and more mainland European countries. Ireland is a place we want to play to.

Mainy - I see that a few people have been asking if you are playing the Rebellion festival this year. At the moment it seems to be in the hands of the bookers so is it looking promising.

Peter - Rebellion is one of those hit and miss affairs.
You either get on the bill or you don't. Darren Russel gets bombarded with bands like us wanting to play it and I think it comes down to support from fans. He's a business man with a passion for punk. If there's enough people ask for a band then that raises his awareness of them and increases the chances of being booked.,
Basically if he is inundated with requests asking for you to play then your chances of appearing improve.
At the moment there's still a lot of people who are unaware that we are back and that maybe isn't helping us.
I've sent shit loads of emails to Darren with no success as of yet, but I'm a needle in a hatstack.
How many emails do you think he gets a day?
So just need to wait it out and fingers crossed that we can get get squeezed on at some point.

Mainy - I was looking at the line up. Rancid will obviously be a big draw, but what do you think about Johnny 'panto dame' Lydon appearing with PiL? He's the punk who hates punk so in his usual contrary manner this could be right up his street.

Peter - I seen PiL had been added to the bill. I've never been a fan and only liked a few songs, but he will put on a good show and I doubt anyone will be moaning about a real live Pistol on the bill.
I can't imagine him watching any of the other acts though ...can you?

Mainy - You've been involved with the US label Working Class Records and they've got your albums up for download globally. How did that come about? Has it gave the material a new lease of life?

Peter - I'd been sending out emails to record labels, trying to get someone to reissue the 'trials and tribulations' and 'guilty as charged' albums as limited vinyl releases as I've always wanted to see our releases in a vinyl format,
But anyway, WCR was one of the labels I Had sent this email too and they responded with 'we dont do vinyl, but we can help getting your releases going on the digital market and give your previously released last two albums the reissue treatment.'
I thought what the hell. Nothing ventured nothing gained as it were.
So that's how it came about. I'm not a lover of downloads as you know as I prefer a physical product, but it's 2012 and you just have to accept that there are a lot of people who do like downloads.
The time is probably right to venture down that road with 4PMs material.
Who knows. If sales go well maybe someone will want to licence a vinylrelease.
Also in the pipeline on WCR is a proper CD and digital download release of Punkology : The Collection 1989-2002 album that we did that that features all our demos & rarities.
Originally that was a purely DIY release.
I'm personally rather excited about those two albums as they have never been properly pressed on CD. We only ever burned cdr copies to sell at gigs. Not really the same as a properly pressed cd with proper cover and so on. It's been a long time coming.

Mainy - and lastly. I was looking at your latest promo photographs and mate....The Rock......c'mon. If you want a loan of a t-shirt with a good punk band on it just say.

Peter – Ha. Fuck you. Brian the lead guitarist had said band shirts to be wore in the pics ...So all I had was one with my favourite wrestler on it THE ROCK least its different if not Electrifying. You're a fud. LOL.


  1. Now that was a good read,looking forward to the gig in april

  2. Nice one, guys!!!! XXX