Thanks for taking time out for this interview. Your debut single ‘Deceived By The Lights’ was released on 22 March. Can you tell us about the song, what the title refers to, and what inspired it?
Hi, yes the song is about our attraction to the bright lights/big city and what it promises, hence ‘Deceived By The Lights’, as often this doesn’t fulfill whatever it is we are seeking. The title is also a play on ‘Deceived By The Light,’ a 1995 book by American Christian philosopher Douglas Groothuis, which itself was named in reference to Betty J. Eadie’s bestseller about her near death experience and the afterlife. But in truth it was probably inspired by too many nights out spending too much money haha!
The original version is included with the single and is a straightforward acoustic track. You fuse drum and bass rhythms with acoustic guitar on the single. That’s an unusual combination. What inspired you to fuse together what some would consider disparate sounds?
I remember it was the first song I wrote having decided I was going to go out and gig as a solo artist, but it was much slower back then, which you can hear on the demo version. The more I played it live on my acoustic guitar, the faster it seemed to become naturally until I had the idea of putting some beats behind it. This coincided with me experimenting with an electronic live format.
Is there a musical vision or concept that you have in mind for your music? And if so, how do you seek to capture that in music?
Yes absolutely… I want it to be vibrant and colourful and I thought the best way to do this was to try and mix guitars, synthesizers and drum machine type sounds in my songs as I love both rock and electronic music. Blending all those different sonic qualities seemed like an interesting way to go musically.
Though the value of recorded music has diminished in recent years, I think streaming can still be a good way to advertise yourself as an independent artist. This does rely on you making playlists though as otherwise you’re the tree falling in a forest making no sound as nobody can hear you! Having said that there’s no doubt they’ve provided musicians with the potential to reach the size of market that would only have been possible by signing with a record label in days gone by.
This is your debut single. Is there more material in the works? If so, when can we expect to hear it?
Yes I’m working on the next single now which should be out in a few weeks…
Will the material be in a similar vein?
It won’t be as experimental as ‘Deceived’ was. There’s a lot of ideas flying around in that song and I guess you could say it deliberately and a bit stubbornly straddles genres to make a statement because it’s a debut release. For that reason I don’t think I’d ever put it on an album or on a collection with anything else.
I understand you have been working on a video for the single. Who’ve you been working with? And what can we expect from the video?
Yes, it’s finished now. I’ve been working with photographer James Butroid. He’s a great collaborator, very patient and I think has a similar vision and ideas as me. It probably helps that we’ve got similar taste in music and he’s been a friend for a long time. I think you can see it’s quite a dark video to suit a fairly dark song really, even if it does have an ‘uptempo’ feel… a bit world weary as the song’s producer put it very well I think.
You played at the Soundhouse in Leicester on Sunday 24th March with the song’s producer and your ex-bandmate Fatbwoi. How did it go? What was the audience response to your material?
Yes, that was his Birthday Doohickey which was a lot of fun. By the way you can also hear his Broadcast Doohickey on xrpradio.co.uk every Sunday at 8pm which is also a good laugh… he’s got a great way with words and some very funny vocal clips, it’s most entertaining! The audience response can be hard to gauge when I’m playing the electronic set in guitar band venues like that, so it can feel a bit ‘fish out of water’ if I’m honest.
Any more shows coming up?
The last show I played was supporting Agents of Evolution who are starting a monthly Electronic Open Mic this Friday 7th June at the Holly Bush pub in Cradley Heath from 7pm. I’ve been invited to that and then I’m playing an acoustic set the next day at the same venue (Saturday 8th) for the Cradley Heath Arts Festival. There’s lots of workshops running all day from 11am and performances from 2pm.
Thanks for taking time out for this interview. Any closing words for our readers?
Thanks for reading and please check out Fatbwoi’s work at fatbwoi.com, especially his trap-style remix of Deceived By The Lights which is extraordinary… I love what he’s done. He’s working on a new album as well which I’ve contributed some vocals on. Watch out for it!!!