by Emily Mee
Have you ever watched the slow, continuous motions of waves on the beach and experienced that feeling of calm and content? Now, not everyone is lucky enough to live by the seaside – but if you are yearning for that feeling, acoustic duo Seafret’s debut album Tell Me It’s Real could be the answer.
This record feels like the musical equivalent of having a soothing wave roll over you, and although the lyrics are often melancholy, there is something about it that gives you a feeling of warmth and happiness.
Made up of singer Jack Sedman and guitarist Harry Draper, Seafret are already gaining recognition for their haunting vocals, soft acoustics and heartfelt lyricism. In the space of a year, they have amassed 10 million streams on Spotify and 6 million YouTube views. Added to this, their support slots for the likes of Kodaline, James Bay and Hozier point to major success for the pair in the future. Not bad for a duo who began their career playing in pubs and on the streets of Yorkshire!
Although there are many high points on the album, ‘Oceans’ has got to be one of the standout tracks. It was previously featured on the band’s EP of the same name, and has since racked up 8 million streams on Spotify. The opening of this track is enough to give you chills, but it is the almost euphoric chorus which is most arresting, leaving you feeling as if you are floating on a cloud made of wistful vocals and rippling electronics. Interestingly, Game Of Thrones actress Maisie Williams stars in the music video for this track, which has been nominated at this year’s European Music Video Awards.
‘To The Sea’ is another memorable track, to which 18-year-old singer-songwriter Rosie Carney lends her stunning vocals, blending perfectly with Sedman’s voice to create a moving, folk-style tune. It is inspiring to see the band supporting and working with other up-and-coming artists – and this is not the first time they have done so. For their November 2015 tour, they launched an initiative to find local supports for each date, aiming to help out other new artists.
Perhaps another of the most admirable things about this band is their ability to evoke a full range of emotions in just one album, from love to sadness, and from hope to longing. Not only are these apparent throughout their music, but they can be truly felt. While the uplifting ‘Wildfire’ displays the kind of romantic hopefulness that defines young love, vocalist Jack sings ‘all that we gave, was it wasted?’ on the more gloomy ‘Give Me Something’. The music feels deeply personal, not least thanks to the at times brilliant lyricism, such as the line ‘love’s always been sink or swim, so I’ll walk’ on the title track, ‘Tell Me It’s Real’.
In this case, it is worth buying the Deluxe version of this album, for the tracks ‘Out Of Nowhere’ and ‘Overtime’, as well as a live version of ‘Oceans’. The live-recorded track exhibits just how little Sedman’s vocals have been meddled with in post-production, showcasing his raw talent.
As a whole, Tell Me It’s Real is a true accomplishment for the band, and something that could see them catapulted to success. There is certainly a Seafret-shaped gap in the market right now – with any luck, we’ll be hearing plenty more from them in the future!
Tell Me It’s Real hits stores on 29 January.
To coincide with the release of the album, Seafret have announced shows at the legendary 100 Club in London on 3 Feburary and a hometown gig at the Bridlington Spa Theatre on 8 February. They will also be visiting local independent record stores for exclusive live performances.
Seafret will be performing at Stand Up To Cancer at Union Chapel, alongside Kodaline, James Morrison, Dagny, and Daniel James. Tickets are available now.