interview: palace

Palace have been quite the busy band lately – not only have they been laying down some new material, they’ve also played a charity gig in aid of The Felix Project, hosted their Palace Presents nights to help save The George Tavern and they’re about to head out on a big UK and Europe tour. We caught up with frontman Leo Wyndham to find out what’s got them so motivated.

Where are you and what have you been up to today?

Today I’ve been packing and sorting my stuff as we’re going on tour tomorrow. Am ridiculously excited. We start in Barcelona and play 29 shows round Europe and the UK. It was also sunny and warm today so I’m feeling good.

Your latest single ‘Bitter’ is about jealousy – was there a specific person or event that inspired the track?

Yeah there was someone who very much inspired this song. But it’s more about my own jealousy and what I inflicted on that person in our relationship. I was a very jealous person, I don’t really know why, probably my own insecurities I guess. I’ve really felt the poisonous power of jealousy fully and have seen what it’s done to girlfriends of my mine. I’m far better now though. It’s an interesting thing jealousy, I sing about it a lot and what it can do to you. It’s definitely a subject I love to write about.

You recently played the Mumford & Sons show in aid of The Felix Project. Obviously, food waste and food poverty in the city is such a big issue but what made you want to support this particular initiative?

It felt like a fantastic way of giving back being involved in a project like this. We never get the opportunity to play charity events so it seemed like a no-brainer really. The Felix Project is an incredible thing. The work they do is so brilliantly simple and clever, it should’ve been happening forever but these guys have managed to feed many many struggling people and cut down on food waste too. It was an honour to be asked and we also got to see some of our favourite bands too in that intimate space which was epic.

Saving London’s nightlife is also an important cause for you as you set up the Palace Presents night to help keep The George going. Tell us about the night and what else can be done to stop independent venues like these from closing?

The George Tavern is an incredibly special place to us, it was where we played some of our first ever shows many years ago and it’s 600 years old! We started a night called Palace Presents there, it also gives a platform to some of our favourite emerging artists. We’ve had some amazing acts so far like Flyte, Ben from Blaenavon, Jamie from Money, Azusena, Cosmo Pyke, Pumablue, Fat Relic and Island. It’s grown and grown and people seem to love it. It’s run by this amazingly cool family who we’ve got to know, and their struggle is very real. The threat of new flats being developed nearby means they will lose their music license which is their bread and butter. Without their music they won’t survive, it’s tragic, so any exposure for them helps the cause. I think people need to join the cause and make their voices heard about keeping these places open, they’re the fabric of our city these old venues and if we lose them then we lose our history and the city’s soul. They need to be protected so these fat cats don’t come in and destroy them.

What are you currently listening to?

Palace play O2 Shepherds Bush Empire on Thursday, 27 Apr 2017, get your tickets here.