I first heard Pale Blue Eyes ear­li­er this year when they released a sin­gle called Dr Pong – an addic­tive, chunky, upbeat num­ber some­what rem­i­nis­cent of Djan­go Djan­go, that instant­ly had me excit­ed­ly rootling around to check out the rest of their mate­r­i­al. Oh – and the song’s about play­ing table ten­nis all night in Berlin.

I was delight­ed when they popped up at Oslo in Hack­ney in April, open­ing for The Besnard Lakes. Jit­tery and Krautrock-ish with a sharp, clean sound, they unleashed a slew of slinky, com­pul­sive­ly dance­able tracks punc­tu­at­ed with euphor­ic moments. 

Pale Blue Eyes are a Devon-based three-piece band com­pris­ing a cou­ple, Lucy and Matt Board, cru­cial­ly aid­ed by Motown-mad bassist Aubrey Simp­son. Matt (vocals/guitar) and Lucy (drums/electronics) met at Dart­ing­ton Col­lege of Arts in South Devon. 

There are a cou­ple of sin­gles out ahead of the impend­ing album release. Just out is Star Vehi­cle – there’s a wist­ful, psy­che­del­ic charm to this track as it opens, snaking its way to you as if through a mist and then hold­ing you cap­tive with its motorik qual­i­ties and smoky vocals. The track is a gor­geous swoopy ride that drench­es you in a wave of opti­mism and joy. It reminds me of The Cure – espe­cial­ly in the open­ing bars. What’s it about? Says vocal­ist Matt: “It touch­es on times at art col­lege, where there was a stu­dent bar called the The Rat & Emu, out in the mid­dle of the coun­try­side. I remem­ber the stars seemed so bright overhead.”

Back in May Pale Blue Eyes released Globe – a dreamy num­ber with a 80s feel, named after a shared stu­dent house in Totnes, Devon that had pre­vi­ous­ly been a pub. So – things are look­ing good for their debut album Sou­venirs which is com­ing out on 2nd Sep­tem­ber – album review to come.

Sou­venirs was record­ed in PBE’s own Pen­quit Mill stu­dio, just south of Dart­moor, the stu­dio hav­ing been fund­ed by a bank loan and end­less part-time jobs. 

The album’s themes are, accord­ing to Matt: “Embrac­ing good times, los­ing your­self in a moment of bliss when the world around you is going to shit… Pro­cess­ing and under­stand­ing loss and grief and using music as a vehi­cle to move on… Fight­ing against the mun­dane and not giv­ing up on dreams… The pure joy of a good night out or a moment of being moved by a band or a piece of art­work or a great film… Mak­ing the most of the time you have.”

LIVE: Pale Blue Eyes are also play­ing UK fes­ti­vals across the sum­mer and sup­port­ing Pub­lic Ser­vice Broad­cast­ing in October. 

Debut album Souvenirs release date 2nd September 2022 on Full Time Hobby
Pale Blue Eyes FACEBOOK

Pho­to: Sophie Jouvenaar

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