Q: What was your highlight of 2017?
APF: 2017 was just one big highlight. On the label front, there were so many. The evening I went to meet Under at Simon Mayo’s house and they said yes to being my first signing. The day Under’s “Slick” was delivered and I held one of my own releases in my hand. Seeing my bands being reviewed in magazines I had read for years like Terrorizer, Metal Hammer and Kerrang! Watching Blind Haze from the side of the Sophie Lancaster stage at Bloodstock. Going into the studio with The Hyena Kill and watching Lorna Blundell nail the drums for “Panic Womb” in two takes. Going to rehearsal rooms to watch Ba’al, RedEye Revival, Barbarian Hermit, Nomad, BongCauldron and others play just for me. I was giddy so often during 2017.
Q: As owner of APF Records what’s your proudest achievement so far?
APF: Holding BongCauldron’s “Binge” in my hands on green vinyl. Yes, I know it was late coming. Yes, the whole thing was a massive ballache. But if you’d told me just 12 months ago I would have BongCauldron on my label AND have released a vinyl album for them in a year’s time I would have laughed at you.
Q: Which of your bands are you most looking forward to seeing at the 3rd February APF Records Showcase, and why?
APF: All of them, obviously. But for different reasons. This will be Tronald’s first (and possibly only) show, and I can’t wait to see how that turns out. I haven’t seen Diesel King for over a year and am having withdrawal symptoms. I have never seen The Wizards Of Delight so that will be ace. The other bands I have seen multiple times – in BongCauldron’s case, 34 – but can’t get enough of any of them. I’ll be down the front losing my shit from 2pm til 11.30pm as a massive fan of every band performing.
Q: What’s the best gig you’ve ever played?
APF: I was in bands back in the day y’know. Both had ridiculous names: Rack n’ Ruin (which later got even worse when changed to Toxic Truth) and Peanut Butter Spliff. Cringeworthy. But by far and away the best gigs I’ve ever played are the handful of minutes I’ve been on stage with BongCauldron, Nomad and Elephant Tree. Don’t care if I was great or shit, I had THE BEST time on all three occasions and will remember those moments for the rest of my life.
Q: What are your plans for 2018?
APF: I’m going to release several amazing albums, EPs, splits and singles on my fucking awesome record label. I’m not going to sign any more bands apart from all the bands I’m going to sign.
Q: Tell us something we don’t know about you or your label?
APF: I went to school with Jude Law. Unfortunately I don’t remember a huge amount about him other than that he was an idiot. In 2005 I was hospitalized with encephalitis – swelling of the brain – and as a result some of my memory went. I was 6 hours away from death when the amazing team at Salford Royal Hospital saved my life. It was so close that my parents and wife were summoned to the hospital to say their goodbyes. I’m lucky to be here still. Anyways, I tell you this because there are some things from my youth I recall as if they were yesterday, but others I don’t remember at all. I just remember Jude was a bellend. Oh and I used to travel to school on the bus with Emily Lloyd, daughter of Roger Lloyd-Pack (Trigger from Only Fools And Horses).
Something you don’t know about my label? Unlikely. I can’t stop talking about it and bore pretty much everyone I meet about it. I am also unable to stop posting on social media about it. It’s all out there.
Q: Anything to declare?
APF: Karma is a thing. Live your life well, or it will come back to bite you in the ass.
The APF Records Showcase takes place at The Bread Shed in Manchester on 3rd February. Tickets available from: wegottickets.com/event/418903
Event information: facebook.com/events/791925504312658/