Draw Me An Elephant: Skindred

We catch up with the Skindred frontman to talk about The Sopranos, haunted doors and being attacked by an air raid klaxon.

What is your favourite smell?

“Sugar Puffs, I dunno why though. And the smell of Dettol – I fucking love the smell of Dettol, I’d take a bath in it.”

Do you have any phobias?

“I don’t do heights very well when I’m stood on top of things. Physically I just get fucking weird. I can’t do the height thing. The only climbing I do on stage is with my tonsils, bro! I’m not running around for no asshole.”

If you were King for the day, what rules would you impose?

“Weed would be legalised. In fact, all drugs would be legalised. And police would be truthful.”

What is your favourite TV show?

“The Sopranos ‘cause it’s gangster. James Gandolfini, rest his soul, is a fucking boss actor. I love the whole aspect of it – the way they put it together, how real Tony is as a father ‘cause he ain’t always right with his children or in his gangster life. I just think it’s a great TV show. I’ve seen them all like eight times, I’ve got every box set, I’ve got a picture on my wall.”

What is your favourite book?

“I don’t even know what a book is, man. Someone gave me Robert DeNiro’s life story the other day and I think I read one page. The only other book I’ve read is Cannon & Ball’s life story ha ha ha! I can’t do books I’m crap at reading.”

Have you ever had a supernatural encounter?

“There’s a cafe I go to all the time and I’m friends with the people that own it who always tell me there’s a ghost or a spirit in there and I’m just like ‘shuuuuuut up, I don’t believe shit’. But I was stood in the cafe with the owner and there’s this fire door – it’s one of those fire doors that’s hard to open. No-one’s in the office and the door is shut, I’m stood there and someone opened the door and shut it back – but there was no-one in the building except for me and him. I’m not saying it was a ghost but it was my first ever paranormal experience. It really shit me up.”

If you could live as anyone else for the day, who would it be?

“Mike Tyson. I feel a kindred spirit with Mike Tyson.”

What has been your most embarrassing moment?

“When I first started Skindred I used to wind up an old air raid klaxon and when you wound it up there’s no stopping it ‘til it stops. When I was thin I used to wear a string vest on stage and one day I wound up the klaxon and this fucking thing grabbed my vest and ripped it off my back. I was stood on stage with no top on and it was pretty embarrassing.”

What is your party trick or secret talent?

“I do a mean Tom Jones impression. I can sing and talk like him which isn’t bad, is it?”

What band epitomises metal?

“Slipknot. They just rule, man. Corey Taylor’s voice is impeccable, he’s charismatic… god knows how you can be charismatic in a mask without facial expressions but he pulls it off. The sound, the aggression, the lyrics, the melodies – Slipknot is it for me. I listen to Slipknot more than any other metal band on the planet.”

Draw me an elephant.

Luke Morton joined Metal Hammer as Online Editor in 2014, having previously worked as News Editor at popular (but now sadly defunct) alternative lifestyle magazine, Front. As well as helming the Metal Hammer website for the four years that followed, Luke also helped relaunch the Metal Hammer podcast in early 2018, producing, scripting and presenting the relaunched show during its early days. He also wrote regular features for the magazine, including a 2018 cover feature for his very favourite band in the world, Slipknot, discussing their turbulent 2008 album, All Hope Is Gone.