Looking into a coastal horizon is much like watching a baby in its first moments – beautiful and seemingly limitless. Pale Seas are like a coast-born child, and like practitioners do, its best to refer to this fresh and plucky band in months in order to clearly document their rapid growth. Little more than 12 months prior, they were old friends departed from sea, fragmented by university. Lucky for us, these minor logistical difficulties shifted and were replaced by each member’s refreshed sonic pipe dream. Just like the nurse ordered: month after month they’ve been making increasingly potent ripples, constantly blogged about, airtime on the nation’s biggest station radio, a spot on the radar section of the NME and tour slot and labels wrangling to sign these bright young things. Onwards and upwards…

We found out a little more about Pale Seas – where they’re from, what influenced them and the question that can deplete a band’s credibility on the mean streets of the Shoreditch scene, their guilty pleasure.

First things first, who are Pale Seas and how long have you been together?

We are made up of myself, Jacob Scott, on guitar and vocals, Graham Poole on lead guitar, Matthew Bishop (Bish) on bass and keyboards and Zealah Anstey on drums.

We’ve been together just over a year, but Graham, Bish and I were in a band together briefly when we were about 16 too. We had a good summer fling with it; played a few shows for our friends and things. I think we peaked by playing a festival that a 16 year old guy had organised and paid for entirely on his dad’s credit card. It was such a triumph at the time, but looking back it was probably just a bit shit.

How did you decide on calling yourself such a delightfully elusive name?

There were a few names that got thrown around but I think the name Pale Seas was just the name that suited us best. It ties in with the place we are all from, which is Southampton. I think once you’re born near the water, you can’t really be away from it for too long. I spent my whole teenage life aching to get away from it and now all I want to do is go back.

You’re all pretty young, what were you doing before the band?

For me it’s always been the thing I wanted to do. I was studying Architecture at university for a couple of years, but I’d spend most of my time writing songs and forget completely about the course for weeks on end, you could always tell which one my scale model was because it would be the one made out of hideous substitute materials because I’d spent all my money on an 8 track or a church organ the week before! I did enjoy studying, but it was always second best to music. Graham is still studying Linguistics at Queen Mary in Mile End, Bish has just finished studying Geography at King’s University and is working full time, and Zealah is studying over at East London. We’re all working double full time at the moment, it’s a lot of hard work.

Which artists act as the band’s primary influences?

Primary influences are really pretty vast for us: I know that Graham is a big Love fan. He used to send me a lot of their songs when we were growing up, Nick Drake, Ride and Zappa too. Bish is a Grandaddy and a Spectrum fan too. We actually recorded with Richard Formby who co wrote ‘How You Satisfy Me‘ last weekend, so he was pretty excited for a few days… he probably still is actually. It was Bish that showed me Daniel Johnston for the first time too.

My main influences range from the way that Stuart Murdoch tells a story, knitting words together from conversations as he goes, to the way that Elliott Smith made me realise that writing a sad song could be infinitely more beautiful than a happy one. Above all of those things my main influence was probably my Uncle. He used to play guitar a lot and I used to love listening to him sing and still do. Seeing someone in your family doing something different is such a huge influence on you when you’re growing up, people often overlook things like that.

are there any artists that you all collectively like?

There are quite a few bands that we all like collectively, Portishead, Cocteau Twins, Radiohead and Fleetwood Mac of course.

Ok, so on that note: of all the songs you love and adore, what one song do you wish you’d written? And one that’s your guilty pleasure, of course.

The song I wish I’d written is ‘Crucify Your Mind‘ by Sixto Rodriguez. When I first heard it a few years ago I had no idea it was going to get me through some really tough times; it’s a real masterpiece as is the rest of Cold Fact. Most of the music I listen to on a day to day basis is a guilty pleasure, but the extended version of ‘Smalltown Boy‘ by Bronski Beat is probably up there. I request it whenever I’m out; it’s a bit of a running joke to most people i’m out with, but it’s a nine minute long work of art to me.

As you are all young and fresh in band terms, how does it feel to be getting such positive press? I especially love the b-side for ‘Something or Nothing’, called ‘Armour’.

It’s really nice that people such as yourself are enjoying the music as much as you are, it spurs you on to keep writing a better song each time. We’ve been quite lucky in the sense that we haven’t been hyped up, there’s been no huge musical prophecy to fulfil for us, but then again we have never claimed to be anything.

Hype is a really good point. How does it feel to be in indie music? In some ways it’s often reduced to ‘scene status’ and what’s popular at the time, you must not feel this kind of pressure.

I’m quite content to wait for whatever scene is blowing over at the moment to catch up with what it is we’re doing, it always seems to work in waves. the music scene is constantly looking for the next big thing and it isn’t going to get it going the way it is. Every scene that has ever happened has happened of its own accord, it is a natural progression and combination of different variables that come together at the same time and the same place and explode, journalists who are trying to force it are wasting their time.

 Many are waiting patiently for a single and album! When is all going to kick off?

Our single launch is taking place on two different nights; the homecoming show is at The Joiners in Southampton on 24 September and the London show is at The Wilmington Arms the next day on the 25 September, looking forward to both a lot, going to be a real treat to play, the next day we’re off to Switzerland for a couple of shows in St. Gallen (26) and Zurich (27), then straight back to Manchester to play roundhouse (28) and Underground Festival in Gloucester the day after.

Finally, for those who still don’t know, describe Pale Seas in 5 words max.

Dark, Moving, Intimate, Ethereal and Loud.

Pale Seas’ latest single ‘Bodies’ will be released on 17 September through Communion.