For those who haven’t heard of you before, how would you describe yourself?
We’re friends first and a band second. Sure, we play a load of shows and practice a lot, but if we were not in a band, we would get together just as much. Our hope is that our tightness comes through our sound. Our tunes are often described as ‘energetically eclectic indie rock’ and that comes from the melding of our individual musical influences.
Who is in the band and how did you all meet?
Myself (Nick Acton – Singer / Guitar), George Wood (Guitarist), Steve Wheate (Bassist) and Will Daly (Drummer) all met at school. We were all in various bands before we eventually found ourselves together in a practice room.
Where did the name Stealing Signs come from?
The name comes from the act itself. We grew up in a smallish town and there wasn’t a huge amount to do. One of our bonding experiences was the cheeky petty crime of nabbing the odd sign here and there. To be honest, we got a little bit too in to it. At one point, we were convinced that the police would make the connection between a local band called ‘Stealing Signs’ and the number of Street Names that were now missing. They never did.
You recently released your single, The Coast. What does this song mean to you?
The song is lyrically inspired by the oddness of disconnection with people you ought to be connected with. We’ve all had to collaborate with people we don’t get on with. We’ve all suddenly realised that our parent’s aren’t right 100% of the time. We’ve all been in a tricky situation when a co-worker or an acquaintance says something that you fundamentally don’t agree with, but it’s easier to not challenge them. The lyrics reflect that situation. Musically, we wanted to create something joyous and fun to play with strong melodic hooks that sit on weaving guitar parts, solid drums and rhythmic bass. The positivity of the music, hopefully, contrasts interestingly with the negativity of the words.
Who produced the single? Have you worked with them before?
Our long time producer and engineer is Tom Peters. There is a bit of a theme here, but over the years he’s become a good friend. Our musical and production ideals all chime well together. It makes for a great recording experience because we’ve developed a short hand that makes tracking and so on, as easy as it can be. We’ve worked together on and off for many years.
Tell us a bit about the music video. It looked fun to make.
We whacked a green screen up; set up some lights; grabbed some props and started filming. The result is a colourful, “beach based” video that is as bright as the song itself. It’s the first one of our music video’s that really shows off our stupid personalities. We have a lot of fun together and we make each other laugh all the time. The song is upbeat and fun, so it gave us the opportunity to muck about along to the music. Take away the camera and the video is a pretty good representation of how we interact as a band normally.
Is this single a hint at more new music on the way?
It certainly is. We’re sitting on an album and we’re keen to get it out (the album that is). Fingers crossed, we’ll have a good idea of when that will be soon. We want to tour the album and promote it as much as possible which is obviously not an option at the moment. So who knows?
Before lockdown, did you get many opportunities to play gigs?
We’re big on the gigging. We like to play as much as possible. Before the lockdown we had been on tour promoting ‘Arcadia’ (the single before The Coast) and we went up and down the country. Shows were booked to promote The Coast and well… I bet you can guess what happened next.
What were some of your most memorable shows?
We’ve been lucky enough to find ourselves on all sorts of awesome stages. We supported Nothing But Thieves; played the Main Stage at YNot Fest and even run our own stages at festivals. However, most recently we got to perform to Micheal Eavis at the Pilton Stage Glastonbury Competition. We won our heat and were all set to compete at the Final to win a Glastonbury slot but well… I bet you can guess what happened next again. The final is still going to go ahead (at some point) and so, we could be playing next year’s Glasto!!!
How are you keeping yourself sane during lockdown?
Myself and Will Daly (the drummer of the band) have been in bands together since we were teenagers. Since then, we have always band practiced every week. It’s that kind of regularity that hits me the hardest. There aren’t many things that I have done (almost) every week for over ten years. We’re all keeping sane by keeping in touch and doing all the same things that everyone is doing. A lot of zooming. We’ll no doubt start to record things soon enough.
What lies in store for stealing signs for the next year?
Who knows?! It’s a hard question to answer with all this going on. One thing is for sure though, we’ll be continuing to get involved in live streaming gigs and hosting our own. I’ve already done a couple of acoustic shows on Instagram Live. It’s good fun and makes you connect with your songs in a different way. Overall though, it looks as though the venues will be the last elements of society to open and even when they do, will people be nervous about going? We’re a gigging band. We’re at our best when we’re on stage so it looks like we’re going to have to make our own stages some how?
Where can we find out more about you?
You can find us on all the streaming platforms and all the socials. Check us out on Instagram to get involved in live shows.
Anything you would like to tell us?
I’d like to tell you that this is great and we really appreciate you asking us these questions. Listening to new music is one of the only things in life right now that is in no way restricted. Thanks for helping us deliver our music to new ears.
I’d like to thank Nick for answering my questions, and wish him and the rest of the band the best of luck for the future. Here’s also to hoping we can get back to gigs as soon as possible!