Peter is a successful musician as well as a writer and teacher. His musical prowess spans over many decades and several countries. He first hit the stage in 1978 in his second hometown Brisbane, in The Supports. The Supports split after a slow, pleasant and unforgettable tour of North Queensland in a double-decker bus with The Go-Betweens after which Loveday went on to form the Birds of Tin, before moving to London in 1982, gigging and recording there with his London-phase band Tiny Town. Tiny Town recorded three singles and an album, sharing bills with the likes of the Pogues, the Go-Betweens and The Birthday Party (Nick Cave). In 1989 Loveday moved to Barcelona where he eventually fired up the furnaces again to record A Bend in the Road (2002): ‘…as well as fine taste when it comes to reinterpreting the Talking Heads, this missing link between David Byrne and Robert Forster, possesses a special taste for injecting pastoral atmosphere into emotionally charged urban songs.’ This was followed in 2004 by the superb Sea-shanties for Landlubbers. In 2006, Peter released the 12-track album Moving Along: ‘…twelve surprising, fresh and spontaneous songs that fathom the darkness and joy of living, in equal parts.’ Several more albums have followed, the latest being The Faraway Near (2021).
The Unfinished Brother
“As he threw her remains out the kitchen window the heavier particles fell directly to the ground while the rest of her floated off on the breeze, off through the trees and across the yards of neighbours. He didn’t wait there at the window as she dispersed, he turned inside to place the urn on the table, there in a band of sunlight where they had eaten their meals together, drunk their end-of-day drinks, and made little ado of the countless things that had happened each day. He turned inside to what was left and slowly made his way out of the kitchen and to the front door. Out there on the porch the midday sun had bleached the colour out of the yard and the street and the whole world. The kids played in that yard, moved in the shade and light of different times of day and in the colours of different seasons. It all comes to an end sooner or later, he said to himself. He made his way round the side of the house and down to the workshop. Everything smelled of oil down there, of oil and metal, of sawn wood and earth. He opened a locked bench drawer and reached right to the back, to where the revolver was. He took it out. It was wrapped in a rag, in a woman’s undergarment, a pair of Joy’s panties, to be exact. It was not a large revolver, and the panties were of a size that could adequately conceal it. But as he unrolled the revolver the panties–marked and smelling of oil–unfolded before him and conjured up his wife. It was the panties that threatened him then and not, as he had expected, the revolver.”
THE UNFINISHED BROTHER has an almost dreamlike quality but also hits hard. It’s about a father falling apart, about a son coming to a tragic end and another growing out of the shadows. An accessible, compelling story of a family which is nuanced and finely crafted with not a word out of place. A stunning new voice, and a story told in sparse economical powerful prose that grabs you from the first to the last page.
THE LANDSCAPERS is the story of one day, the narrator’s 40th birthday – set on an island where some people have never seen the sea, where there is a community of landscape artists (one is the narrator’s best friend’s father, a man who vanished – only our narrator knows how), of sunlight and blue seas, of love found, roads built, dancing horses and life-changing news revealed in the most dramatic of circumstances. A beautiful mood piece that is nonetheless full of drama.
INFINITELY DISTRACTING is a weekly fiction podcast written and read by Peter, launched in January 2023.