When asked what my favourite album is, aside from slating the questioner for such ignorance to ask as much, my answer always ends up being Pela's 'Anytown Graffiti'. To be honest I'm not 100% it is my ultimate album but I never seem to be able to give any other answer.
Released in 2007 and despite landing itself on over 35 'Best Albums of 2007' lists, it remained relatively unknown. The band, from Brooklyn, went on to nurture their incredible live act and began (and supposedly finished) recording their second album - 'Rise ye Sunken Ships!'. To my immense sadness it was never released and Pela split up in 2009.
For front-man, Billy McCarthy, this was the beginning of a roller-coaster of a journey. This began with the tragic death of his brother, after which Billy was faced with the huge decision of whether to give up on music or take the plunge by starting a new band.
Fortunately he did the latter and We Are Augustines was born with Eric Sanderson of Pela joining in on the action as well.
Perhaps it's not the amazing music of Pela's 'Anytown Graffiti' that makes me so attached to it (don't get me wrong - it is an incredible album) but more the fairytale story which has come to accompany it. No matter what happens in life, if you want something bad enough and try hard enough, it will come.
We Are Augustines 'made it' and have just finished another European tour playing to hundreds of thousands of fans across the continent. I was lucky enough to see them twice and meet Billy who was approachable, polite, funny and grateful.
This is not just another band, it is a couple of men who have plugged away at something for so many years and this is painfully clear in all of their music. Finally they are reaping the rewards - I couldn't be happier for them.
Pela - Lost to the Lonesome
Pela - Waiting on the Stairs
Read Pela's story here
We Are Augustines - Chapel Song
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