Leamington Spa quartet have just released their brilliant debut album No Gods, an eclectic mix of rousing choruses, shimmering melodies and changing moods that's as English as the tuppence. Frontman James Mattock very kindly caught up with us to give us more of an insight into the making of the album and what made the band tick while recording it, including his thoughts on their tours of America and their connection to the boom of British rock music that's currently taking place.

R13: Last month saw the release of your debut album No Gods, how was the recording process and are you happy with the finished product?
JM: We really had no idea what to expect, we'd never been in a big studio before with more than a few days to record. We just made sure we had the material, which we had plenty of, and just tried to make the best record we could. We're very, very happy with the result, but fortunately still not completely artistically satisfied.

R13: We can hear influence from The Clash, Social Distortion and even elements of Brit-Rock in there, who or what do you feel had the greatest amount of influence on the record's sound?
JM: It's not something we're thinking about. Clearly, we're young and clearly we have been influenced to start a band. But when it came to it, we were thinking about Sharks and what it was that made us. We wanted to make a fresh, British sounding guitar record with depth that people could connect with.

R13: The album is an eclectic affair, with songs like Arcane Effigies having a huge sing-a-long quality while Luck and Turn To You shimmer with a real authenticity, what were your favourite tracks in the creation of the album?
JM: Having a diverse mix of songs is what makes a good album in our eyes, we didn't want to suffocate it with single after single. We're quite fascinated by the craft that is a full length record, Side A and Side B have always had distinguishable feels to them. I think the deeper cuts always turn out to be personal favourites for those who wrote them. It's hard to pick but I really dig Dawn Soft Light and Luck.

R13: On A Clear Day You Can See Yourself is one of the most wonderfully striking tracks you have written so far, how did that song come about?
JM: Thank you very much! Andy (Bayliss, guitar) wrote the music to it, I remember being really excited by having the challenge of writing lyrics to something quite out of my comfort zone. One morning I woke up with the melodies in my head, and by breakfast I had all the lyrics to it. It was a song that really didn't need over-thinking.

R13: The album's title relates to the importance of not placing anyone on a pedestal, is this a belief you've always had as a band or as individuals?
JM: Yeah definitely, but that's really just us and me, and I'm sure plenty of people in the world too. I mean those who rely upon themselves only to achieve anything they desire. I really can't see anything negative in that at all, being your own all-mighty. The only really shitty criticism we get is from Christians calling us gay for being Atheist. I really don't have to justify it anymore than that.

R13: How was recording as a three-piece? Was this the first time you've done this?
JM: It was, yeah. It was really good and for the situation at the time, certainly the easiest option. I'm really excited about having Carl (Murrihy, new bassist) in the band, and having four of us on the next record is obviously going to be apparent. Carl's practically been there every step of the way with us since 2009 and we're welcoming him completely to add as much creativity as he wants.

R13: You've spent a lot of time touring America, has that been a big part in enabling your fan base to grow?
JM: To have come out of that eight month tour bubble and view it from the perspective I have now, it was totally worth it in every aspect. We may have lost money but we'll get that back somehow. It developed the band, most importantly. But yeah, touring and working hard pays off and I believe that getting out there and roughing it-and believe me, it got rough-appeals to people. They respect that.

R13: Despite such long stints in the US your music possesses a genuinely British feel, is this deliberate or simply a natural thing?
JM: Touring the US is not going to change our personality or our taste in music. It's still all the same thing when you're loading in, sound checking, playing, looking for somewhere to sleep and eat. We're a very honest band and the music we play is music we love, the British sound happens very naturally, we don't feel the need to push that because it will always be there. British artists that deliberately sound American are obviously doing it for American success because it's a bigger market. There's no dignity in compromising who you are for money.

R13: The British rock scene is experiencing a huge revival at the moment and you guys are a huge part of that, do you feel that this is only going to continue and maybe even get better?
JM:In the UK, it comes in waves, and if there comes a time and place for our kind of music we'll be happy to ride the crest. We'll always be around regardless, we have to be.

R13: Along with yourselves which other young bands would you like to see to continue doing well?
JM: There are so many that deserve it more than we do. It's really exciting to be part of it all, I'm truly honoured to have made some of the friends we have. There's just so many I don't want to mention for fear of missing any out. We wish the best to all our friends, and wish the utmost worst for some certain arseholes.

A huge thanks to James for taking the time out for a great chat that gives a real insight into where Sharks are presently at and have been over the past few years. If you're a fan of exciting and, importantly, honest music, be sure to pick up a copy of No Gods, it's an absolute cracker. In the meantime give the tracks On A Clear Day You Can See Yourself and Luck a listen as a taster and grab a ticket to their tour taking place across the UK now.