Stream: Seagulls – ‘The Royal We’

By Ben Tipple

‘The Royal We’ didn’t come easy for Atlanta, Georgia based gruff punks Seagulls. The five track EP was recoded twice, consisting of various songs the band have been playing for some time, and found itself subject to a number of line-up changes. For some, even the band, it may be a surprise that it sounds so good.

“’The Royal We’ coming out is significant for us because it finally pushes out all the songs we had written when we first started the band,” explains vocalist and bassist Steve Johnson, who currently sits alongside co-vocalist and guitarist Dom DiCecco and second guitarist Billy Duncan. For all three, the release of the EP signifies an end to a turbulent chapter in their relatively short history and the start of something new. Currently in search of a new drummer, the band are happy to release the lyrically focussed effort.

Lead track ‘Santa’s Little Helper’ was built around the death of both a dog and Johnson’s grandma. “I generally don’t write a song without a theme that isn’t sensitive to me,” he explains, going on to list themes covering moving home, the end of difficult relationships and personally destructive tornadoes. “Most of the time we start with an idea, a riff, a tentative structure, and all collaborate and make countless revisions and tweaks until it’s something we can all stomach,” DiCecco expands. “Then Steve takes an inordinately long time to throw lyrics on top,” he jokes.

The result of this painstaking and lyrically honest process is a dirtier punk song that straddles both pop-punk and the more traditional versions of the genre – think I Am The Avalanche or Off With Their Heads, yet with a consistently optimistic overtone. Even after hitting the studio twice to record the record, there’s an uncompromising sense of frivolity and perfection about it all.

“We recorded this entire EP twice… After listening back to it, we really liked the tone, but our execution was extremely sloppy so we were faced with the choice of settling for what we had done or redoing the entire thing,” Johnson explains. “The recording of ‘The Royal We’ was long,” Duncan agrees. “At the end of the day, we decided to let a professional handle our next effort.”

Spurred on by the release, the rest of 2014 will focus firmly on getting a new drummer, and pulling the complete band together. “You can expect more touring, more Corey Haim/Feldman themed merchandise, and a new drummer,” Duncan laughs.

Try summarising the band in one sentence? “Seagulls prefer paragraphs,” Duncan jokes. In that case, we’ll let the music do the talking.

Stream the brand new Seagulls EP, ‘The Royal We’, exclusively and in full below.

‘The Royal We’ is available to pre-order from Friday 7th March 2014.