The Gauntlet's Shauna O'Donnell recently caught up with Flyleaf bassist Pat Seals for a brief interview about the band's upcoming album, "New Horizon."
Hi Pat, thanks for talking with me today. How are things going?
Pat: They are going great. We just got done with practice today.
I really love the new song "New Horizons."
Pat: Thank you so much! I'm glad you like it.
The album with the same title will be released on October 30th right?
Pat: Yes that's true.
How many songs are on it?
Pat: There are eleven songs on the record.
I have only heard the one song. Is that a good example of what we can expect to hear throughout the rest of the record?
Pat: There is a pretty good variety and a good spectrum of emotion on New Horizons. I'm real excited to hear what everyone thinks.
This is your third record. What was the vibe while writing this one?
Pat: It was different than any other. We kind of just let these songs happen I think, whereas before it was always like "Ugh! We've got to write!" It was like we were thinking about the process and this time it felt like before I knew what was going on, the songs were written. It was pretty cool because it kind of wrote itself in a way I guess.
You guys tend to write with positive messages in mind. What message or messages are you conveying on this record?
Pat: For me personally, this record is really about the rebirth of the way you think, the way you see the world and yourself. It is a rebirth that you have to go through or else you will kind of stagnate in the same present horizon. There is a lot of taking a hard look at one's self and seeing where to go from there.
You once again went with Howard Benson as producer for this record. What is it that he brings to the table?
Pat: On this record Howard really made us at home. It was great to be with him. I think we had more personal interaction with him this time then we had before. I really felt like Howard was on our team, not that he wasn't before, but we felt his heart was in this. He believed in this project and I think you can hear it in the mix. He had his little Howard bells and whistles on it in such a caring way.
Was this record recorded differently than the others?
Pat: The process was about the same. I think we looked at these songs more like arrangements. All of our heads were kind of in the “how does this look from the outside?” perspective.
With each album you grow as songwriters and as performers for that matter. Has it become easier to write songs?
Pat: I think you just learn what problems to expect and how to solve them. It's just like anything else, you learn the shortcuts. We have a little bit more experience and that made the songs come together that much quicker.
You lost a close friend, Rich Caldwell, towards the end of recording the record to a tragic accident. I'm really sorry to hear about that.
Pat: Thank you.
You pay tribute to him in the video for "New Horizons" and Lacey's baby is also shown in the video at the end.
Pat: Yeah, Jack is a really special boy. It really, really hurt to lose Rich. You don’t imagine that you'd be missing that person someday.
Do you prefer the performance videos or do you like the ones with a concept?
Pat: The one’s with a concept are easy because sometimes we don’t have to show up. I like watching performance videos maybe just a hair more personally. A good video is a good video, but I think there will be some concepts on this one. Making the video for “New Horizons" the song was a lot of fun. It was a perfect day in May in Texas.
What is your favorite memory of making this video?
Pat: My favorite part was when James, Jared, Sameer and I got to go on the boat. They were filming us swimming and hanging out on Jared’s speedboat. We got to climb up on these little cliffs and they filmed us jumping off. The cameramen had little waterproof hand held cameras and they were jumping off with us. We were having fun and making a video around that.
I've seen you guys live before and all of you perform with so much energy throughout the entire show. How do you keep up the ability to do that night after night?
Pat: (laughs) That is smoke and mirrors. We are getting older. We are going to have to be breathing through our noses some more.
What are the plans as far as touring in support of the new release?
Pat: Right now we are looking at one day in South Carolina, but it is not completely put together. Once it is confirmed it will be on our website. I think we are going to look at starting up one-offs and work our way up into a bigger tour.
Are you currently involved with any organizations or charities that you would like to talk about?
Pat: There is a fund for Rich Caldwell's wife Katie and son Kirby. I believe you can donate if you go to our website.
Thank you so much for the interview. Was there anything you’d like to add or say?
Pat: Thank you Shauna. It was such a pleasure and we really appreciate it.