FM Meets PELA

"Brighton definitely has a slower pace to it which we love. The beach is a huge selling point too"
30 June 2022

By Frank Bell

Making a stance on the UK music scene is PELA, with their new groundbreaking and moving EP Little Ceremonies. The Brighton-based pop duo set out in 2020, and have since spread their featherweight and nostalgic sound across the UK. After spending nearly a year in their hometown writing songs by the sea, they can now unveil their true colors. In the light of their new release and British summer heatwaves, we asked them a series of questions.

Would you like to introduce yourselves to our readers?

We are Hannah and Olly, we live in Brighton but formed PELA in London a couple of years ago. 

Growing up, who were your musical inspirations?

Hannah: Cocteau Twins, Paramore, Kate Bush, Joni Mitchell and Feist to name a few. But I’ve always been into such a range from a love of Motown and Elvis (thanks to my dad) to Led Zeppelin and 80s new romantic from my mum.

Olly: Ghostpoet, Daughter, Ben Howard, Miles Davis and Steve Reich were probably the main ones for me

What was the inspiration and motivation behind your new release?

Writing through lockdowns, between house moves and in different locations meant we had a built up a collection of songs and the 5 tracks on the EP are the ones that made the cut.  Little Ceremonies, the title track, felt like the anchor and the song that leads us to what is next. 

Moving from London to Brighton, how do your surroundings impact your music?

Brighton definitely has a slower pace to it which we love. The beach is a huge selling point too…We’ve started working ambient breaks into our tracks and live set (I hope you are Happy is an example of this) which could be subconsciously influenced by the openness and calmness Brighton brings (along with the party when you want it!)

How have you two changed as a duo since your first release?

We first started releasing music in 2020 when live music wasn’t happening…Our focus then was very studio focused but since then, we’ve started really honing in on our live show, reworking our tracks to give them a new edge on stage. Our sound has evolved too, which has been influenced by working with Daniel Moyler as co-producer / mixer and writing with Liz Lawrence on two of the tracks (Tell Me and Heavy). Since recording the EP, we’ve further evolved, it’s an exciting feeling constantly growing artistically and as songwriters. 

Where can we expect to find you performing Little Ceremonies this year?

We’ve just had our EP launch show at Komedia Studio in Brighton, then we’re playing Nozstock the Hidden Valley on 23rd July. A London show is also imminent  – more on that soon!