Percival Elliott mark debut vinyl release with launch shows in Southsea and Bognor Regis

Percival Elliott are marking the release of their debut vinyl EP with a hometown show.

Monday, 18th November 2019, 3:36 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st November 2019, 3:58 pm
Percival Elliott, from left: Adam Stanton, Sam Carter-Brazier, Kevin Smith and Olly Hite.

The indie-rock act, known for their heartfelt songwriting and epic performances, was originally formed by frontman Olly Hite and guitarist Sam Carter-Brazier, but are now a four-piece.

And while they have released several tracks online and produced a string of eye-catching videos, this is their first proper physical release – a six-track EP on 10in vinyl.

‘It was just really nice when the delivery came through the post,’ says Sam, ‘being able to open up this box with a huge smile on your face and go: “That’s us!” And then to put it on the turntable, and go: “That’s us!”

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‘It's a really strange feeling, having vinyl and having a physical product that you can be extremely proud of. The fear is today that you put something online and it's lost instantly in the ether of zeros and ones.

‘And the coolest thing is, in my vinyl collection, it's sat next to some recordings of my granddad and his choir, which is on 45.’

While Percival Elliott have been an entity for about five or six years, they only grew to a four-piece, with the addition of Adam Stanton on bass and Kevin Smith on drums, about 18 months ago.

‘I’ve known Adam for years since our old bands use to gig together, and big Kev was my lecturer at college. Then Adam was the recording engineer on a lot of the earlier stuff, and Kev would master it.

The real Percival Elliott, the great-great grandfather of Olly Hite, who took his name for his band.

‘And then we would just put jam together. They were with us live more often than not, and we were like: “This is silly, you guys are part of the band,”, and it just naturally all fell together.

‘They’re really lovely guys and it is just nice that everyone's on the same page now.’

It has also meant they don’t get asked so often which one is Percival and which one is Elliott.

‘We’d be going: “No, no, no, no, no! It was Olly’s great, great-grandfather!”

The real Percival Elliott was born in 1883, he was an inventor who created one of the first ice-cream shops in Brighton. And his finely-moustached portrait graces the cover of the EP.

The EP is a mix of old and new material.

‘We went for some tracks that we'd already released – Forever, I'm Yours, Betty and Down Down, mainly because they had videos, they're already out there, and we're extremely proud of them and it's nice to have that in physical format.

‘We put a couple of tracks that haven't been released before on there too . One called So Long Lady and another one called All Messed Up, which is a ballad.

‘This is kind of a tester for us to see if it works and people enjoy buying this format. We haven't released it digitally yet, but I think we're going to do that in January just because we want to push the physical format first.

‘Supporting local bands, there's probably no better way to do it than buying their merchandise because it goes straight back into the bands, whereas if you listen to it on Spotify, nobody's really getting paid for that apart from the CEO of Spotify.’

The band also recently released an impressive video for EP track Down Down.‘We're quite lucky that we went with a chap called Chris Cousins. He does all the tour graphics for Elton John and Muse and all these big production stadium tours.

‘Olly had crossed paths with him years ago, so we contacted him and said we've got this concept for the video.

‘Down Down is all about the corporate fat cats and people taking back control. For Olly and I, it’s any excuse to play dress-up, and I wanted to dress like a dictator!

‘Of course Olly had to be the freedom fighter, and then the new guys were the security guards.

‘It was really, really cool to do. We filmed in front of green screens, sent it off and all the magic was done by Chris at his end.

‘We said to Chris: “Do you have a vision for this?” He sent the stuff back over and we were just like: “Whoa. That is absolutely amazing.”’

And there’s good news for their fans in the new year – there should be lots more new music around the corner from the band.

‘We've got about 20 songs on the back burner, which we we promise we will trickle out next year.

‘I think we're going to try and do one a month, just because we've got so much material, and albums and EP aren’t really such a thing anymore.’

And as Sam adds: ‘We're not we're not slowing down. We're going back into the studio this Saturday to rerecord a couple of tracks because they've changed, and then we got a new one that we're working on which is a bit of a banger...’

As well as playing on Southsea, there will also be a free show in Bognor Regis, at the Hothampton Arms, on Friday, November 22, supported by Amber & Lucy and Bella Estelle.

The EP will be available at the gigs, and also at The Tonic shop in Highland Road, Southsea.

At the gig in Southsea, they will be auctioning off a white label test pressing of the EP, with proceeds to go to Tonic, the mental health music charity.

Tickets for the show at The Loft in Southsea on Friday, December 6 are £3. Support comes from Devin Jade and Phosphate Gorilla.