Patrick Doyle

Interview and photography by
Owen Myers


When I went to see the Brooklyn band Vivian Girls play in London a few weeks ago, I came away more smitten with the support act than the headliners. The band in question, Veronica Falls, play perversely catchy pop songs inspired by suicide spots and haunted graveyards — but it was their adorable drummer, Patrick, that I couldn’t take my eyes off of. Last weekend I met up with fellow BUTTHEAD Patrick over pints of traditional cider to reminisce about New York and talk about our shared obsession with movies about teenage girls. Don’t you just want to put him in your pocket?

Owen: What bars did you like to hang out at in New York?
Patrick: My favourite bar was called Heathers, in the East Village, on 13th Street. It’s run by a girl called Heather — surprisingly! I used to DJ with my friends who have a night there every Thursday called Pizza Party.
What kind of records did you play?
I used to play a lot of post-punk, some disco…When I was in New York it was right around the time of the whole shoegaze revival, and that’s the music I was into as a teenager, so it was fun to play that stuff to people who were only just getting into it.
Because people were only just discovering music that you’d grown up with?
Yeah, kind of. I grew up in a really small town called Keith in the Scottish Highlands, which is your quintessential farming town — a lot of drinking, not much else. My only access to music was through my physics teacher Ruth. Every week that I would go to class she would give me a new record — The Pastels, early Stereolab, stuff like that. She saved my life basically! [laughs] She’s an amazing woman; we still write to each other a lot.
Growing up in a small town, did you have any notable early sexual experiences?
I just tried to get off with girls for a long time! [laughs] I had a girlfriend for about a year. I was convinced that I was in love with her, but I think I just really wanted to be friends with her.
Did you want to be her?
Yeah, I think I wanted to be her! She was like Ally Sheedy from The Breakfast Club — really scruffy, didn’t really give a shit.
But no truck stops?
I longed for a truck stop! But it never happened. [laughs] I’m quite boring when it comes to all that, I’m not very lascivious.
Your band in Glasgow, The Royal We, seemed to epitomise the freeform creativity of the Glasgow art/music scene. Is that what it felt like to you?
I think in a lot of ways you’re right — it’s the way things happen in Glasgow. The art scene and the music scene there are so tight that everyone does both, there’s not really a line. That band was just an experiment, but it became an egotistical time-bomb — it got to the point where we couldn’t be in the same room! It was way more intense than it should have been.
The indie/twee scene has always seemed very sexually coy to me — was that your experience?
Definitely, yeah. I spent a lot of time in that scene when I was really young, but got sick of it for that reason. There’s not really anything sexy about being twee. Why are they scratching their head and pulling their fringe down in front of their eyes? I don’t get it! It’s definitely more creepy than intriguing.
If you could give one recommendation to BUTT readers of something to do in London, what would it be?
There’s a car boot sale I go to in Wimbledon a lot, which is on Saturdays. We got this really amazing mirror from there recently — it’s a Pears Soap mirror. It’s got a hole in the middle where you can put a picture in the back of the mirror.
Did you put a picture in the middle?
It’s quite good with just having a hole in the middle, actually.
Are you in a relationship at the moment?
Yeah. It’s been eight or nine months. I just saw this guy in a club — which I never normally go to — and just thought he looked really nice, and decided to ask him out. I really like asking people out in a purely primary school way — it cuts out a lot of beating around the bush. So we started dating and we’ve been going out ever since. I’m really happy, all I wanna do is stay in and watch TV!
Can you cook?
No! I’m possibly the worst cook in the world! I made pizza on New Year’s Eve, and it was disgusting! I felt really terrible as well, because we were going to have dinner, and then it was the end of the year — I didn’t go out. I don’t think my boyfriend’s ever got over it. [laughs]
What are you doing after this interview?
I’m gonna ride my bike to my boyfriend’s house. He’s hungover and I’m gonna go and make dinner — which will be awful! [laughs] I think we’re going to watch Ghost World. You know that film?
Yeah. That’s a really important film for me. I think I know it off by heart.
Really?! That’s funny. It’s such an amazing film. Ghost World, Heathers and Grey Gardens probably sum up what I have been, what I am now, and what I will be in the future. [laughs] I’m gonna go and blow up a school!

MP3 Download of ‘Found Love In A Graveyard

Published on 05 March 2010