This summer has seen cult band, Pastel firmly secure their reputation as one of the UK’s most influential and important new guitar bands. Not only with fans, but incredibly they have managed to become the new favourite band of the iconic Liam Gallagher and connected with a huge new audience when they opened his gargantuan Knebworth Park show – and they’re set to join him at another huge show in Cardiff this week. Meanwhile, their radio support continues with airplay on the likes of BBC 6 Music and Radio X as well as being featured on Soccer AM.
Pastel are Jack Yates on vocals, his cousin James Yates on rhythm guitar, Joe Anderson on lead guitar, Liam O’Shea on bass and Rhys Wheeler on drums. From listening to previous releases from the band its clear to hear that their influences are varied coupling together sounds from the likes of Shack, Radiohead, The Charlatans, Blossoms and New Order.
Building on their ever increasing momentum, Pastel released their new single ‘S.O.H.O.’ this week on September 13th, while their second EP ‘Isaiah’ is due for release on October 21st.
The Manchester band’s debut EP ‘Deeper Than Holy’ made a big impact, as it went straight to #1 on the UK vinyl chart and sold-out its 12” vinyl pressing in just 90 seconds. There is now such a demand for the EP that prices on Discogs start at a some would say, somewhat vulgar £80 a copy!
The band’s brand new release ‘S.O.H.O.’ will no doubt impress its ‘90s brit-pop inspired, indie-dance strut vibes propelled by signature guitar riffs. The track ebbs and flows along nicely before there’s a break in proceedings and then the track literally explodes back into life with a bang that will no doubt ignite live shows and club nights alike.
‘S.O.H.O.’ will feature on the ‘Isaiah‘EP together with the recently released title track alongside two further previously unreleased tracks of ‘Escape’ and ‘Two Fools’.
‘Escape’ channels the spirit of early Verve, dreamy psychedelia possessing an air of both nostalgia and optimism. The concluding ‘Two Fools’ is a bigger beast, contrasting spiralling big riffs with a spacey acoustic passage before once again hitting hard. In short, ‘Isaiah’ shows that Pastel bring a palpable new energy to their storied musical roots.
Guitarist James Yates says of the new EP:
“This EP feels like a step up, like we’re growing musically and expanding on our sound! It’s everything we’re about. Trippy and chilled out with a proper deep groove to it. No other young British band is doing anything nearly as good, and we cannot wait for things to pop off in 2023 when our debut album drops.”
Pastel recorded the EP with producer J. Fender, the frontman of fellow Manchester rising stars Afflecks Palace and the founder of both bands’ record label, Spirit of Spike Island. It was mixed by James Kenosha and then mastered by John Davis (The Killers, Foals, IDLES) at Metropolis in London.
The ‘Isaiah’ EP is available to pre-order / pre-save now. It will be released on digital and vinyl formats. There will be three vinyl editions, each strictly limited to just 500 copies. The Spirit of Spike Island store will exclusively stock the striking blue and pink marbled versions, while a glacier white edition will be available via select independent stores worldwide.
After recently headlining the This Feeling Rewired Festival in London and Leeds, Pastel’s upcoming live shows includes a nationwide tour as guests to Afflecks Palace as well as the Neighbourhood Weekender and the Crosstown Festival. Tour dates as follows:
15th – Cardiff, Alexandra Head (with Liam Gallagher)
20th – Oxford, The Bullingdon (with Afflecks Palace)
21st – Exeter, The Cavern (with Afflecks Palace)
22nd – Swansea, The Bunkhouse (with Afflecks Palace)
23rd – Ramsgate, Music Hall (with Afflecks Palace)
24th – Bedford, Esquires (with Afflecks Palace)
25th – Norwich, The Waterfront (with Afflecks Palace)
1st – Manchester, Neighbourhood Weekender
2nd – Hull, Social (with Afflecks Palace)
3rd – Sunderland, The Independent (with Afflecks Palace)
Words by Sally Newman
Photo credit Matt Eynon