I don't write a lot of poetry. Possibly because I assume it'll never be read. My love of writing originated in a love of poetry, at school – in fact, the first gig I went to outside Burnley was to see Liverpool poet Roger McGough in Wigan. I used to fill up the school magazine with rotten poems (but thankfully they weren't doom-ridden and angsty, just rotten). Then as a 16-year-old I was sent to Devon on a week-long Arvon Foundation course run by Adrian Henri, at which point I think I decided that writing song lyrics was possibly a better career choice. 


I've been writing reviews for R2 (formerly Rock 'n' Reel) for years now, and it's almost always a chore that ends up being deeply satisfying. Being confronted by music I might or might not like and having to make sense of it … and I do love the occasional chance to roundly abuse the work of millionaire pop stars.

"Is anything sadder than a train that leaves when it’s supposed to, that has only one voice, only one route? There’s nothing sadder." (Primo Levi)