Introducing Interview: Eilis Frawley

Already known to us as one half of duo Party Fears, Berlin based artist Eilis Frawley has now got our attention with a stirring new solo release.

Combining poignant spoken word lyricism with throbbing beats and twinkling ethereal electro soundscapes, ‘illusions’ reflects on the pressures of modern day life and the effects it can have on our mental health.

We caught up with Eilis to find out more…

Hi Eilis, welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about what you do?
Hey! I’m a drummer, playing in Party Fears and I Drew Blank, and more recently as a solo performer working with spoken word, drums and samples. 

We already know you as one half of art-pop duo Party Fears, but what inspired you to start this solo project, and how did it come about?
I had been thinking about it for a number of years but I can’t sing (or play a more ‘solo’ friendly instrument), and was unsure of what medium I could create something in. Last year I applied for a job in a circus (truth!) and they asked me to send a video of me playing/using electronics (tbh I probably wasn’t qualified for the job), which was the birth of the ‘Intellectual Men’ video I put out last year; much to my surprise it got a lot of attention, and I started to think maybe the world is big enough for exactly that, a solo drummer with spoken word. 

Your stirring new single ‘illusions’ is out now – can you tell us a bit about it?
I’m fascinated by the various masks people wear to function in society. We show ourselves so differently on social media, towards people we love and towards strangers. We’re living in a time of extreme busy-ness and I think it takes a real toll on peoples mental health, so wanted to touch on that. 

Your music is pretty unique and I wouldn’t ever try to pigeon hole it into one genre, but who or what would you consider to be your main inspirations for this new project?
I’ve been fan girl-ing Tune-yards for years, I love the layers she uses and how unapologetic she is in her style. Holy Fuck and Battles are also huge inspirations for pad/synth/soundscapes.

How is your local music scene? Do you go to see lots of live music?
The music scene in Berlin is large and diverse. We’re extremely lucky to get so many bands coming through on tour. Any night of the week there’s a possibility to see a show. I try to go to a gig every week – sometimes it doesn’t happen, but other weeks I go to three! 

And what can we expect from your solo live show?
You can expect it to be loud, and hopefully reflective. I hope people can relate to my stories of feminism, growing up, living abroad, mental health and the general feeling of being an ‘outsider’. 

As we’re a new music focused site, are there any new/upcoming bands or artists you’d recommend we check out?
So many! I made a tour playlist full of new releases (mostly) by upcoming artists. Have a listen here. For Berlin Bands: People Club, SchnickSchnack, Aporia, Jaguwar, Shybits, Gym Tonic.

And how do you feel the music industry is for new artists at the moment – would you say it’s difficult to get noticed?
I hands down don’t understand the industry. There seems to be a lot going on and there are plenty of blogs/promoters/playlists, but be dammed if I understand anything about algorithms. At the moment I’m trying to just work with people who are decent and genuinely interested in my music. If the industry is a deep sea, everyone is trying to be in the reef!

Finally, what does the rest of 2019 have in store for you and your solo work?
I have plans to go back into the recording studio at the end of November, and another single to come out by the end of the year. In December/January I will be soaking up the sun in Australia, spending some time with my family and also playing a few shows.

Massive thanks to Eilis for answering our questions! 

‘illusions’ is out now, via Reckless Yes. Buy on Bandcamp. And catch Eilis live on tour:

30th October – Earth, London
31st October – Hatch, Sheffield
1st November – The Old Abbey, Manchester
2nd November – The Gallery, Leicester (w/ Amateur Pop)

Photo Credit: Nina Hynes

Premiere: Party Fears – ‘Dog Star’ (Rookes Remix)

What better news of a Thursday than to find out that two of your favourite artists have teamed up for an epic new release… ? And that’s the case today, as we have the honour of sharing the brand new remix of Party Fears‘ track ‘Dog Star’, by electro pioneer Rookes.

With eight years’ live experience under her belt (including two gigs for yours truly!), Rookes is set to release her second EP Liminal later this year, and is known for creating immersive electro-pop soundscapes. Party Fears have also wowed us live, and initially formed in South Korea by Irish native Maggie Devlin. Now Berlin based with co-founder Eilis Frawley, they continue to create their unique, jangling art-pop sounds.

This latest edition of ‘Dog Star’ oozes whirring, glitchy hooks and luscious layers of sound, creating a sweeping, glistening soundscape complete with throbbing bass-lines and showcasing the allure of Devlin’s captivating vocals. Interweaving a range of sonic elements to create an anthemic, majestic wall of sound, the remix adds an eerie, propulsive energy to the already soaring power of the original, leaving you utterly spellbound.

Listen to Rookes’ remix of ‘Dog Star’, for the first time, here:

 

‘Dog Star’ is out tomorrow 16th August. Make sure you also keep an ear out for Rookes’ upcoming EP, Liminal, and Party Fears’ next single ‘Ok. No Problem’, set for release in early Autumn.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

 

Video Premiere: Cat Mahatta – ‘Hymn To Dudes’

Started as a bedroom project in Oakland, to try and encapsulate her experience as a queer mixed-race multi-instrumentalist, producer and dancer Cat Mahatta creates collaborative electro-pop and innovative performance art. Having previously wowed our ears with her last single ‘Barely’, she’s now returned with a spellbinding new offering.

An anthemic message to the patriarchal powers that be, ‘Hymn To Dudes’ drips with glitchy beats alongside Mahatta’s swirling, sparkling vocals, creating a glistening slice of alt-pop, oozing a poignant majesty and sweeping splendour.

Accompanied by an artfully choreographed and beautifully thought-provoking video that portrays a mystical sleepover in which Cat is inducted into a coven of Feminist Art Goddesses, ‘Hymn To Dudes’ offers a dreamily bewitching electro soundscape filled with an empowering spirit that we need now more than ever.

Of the track, Mahatta expands:

“‘Hymn to Dudes’ is a message to everyone who’s ever underestimated, belittled, or oppressed me and my global community; it empowers us and reminds us that we have permission not to care what they or anyone else thinks of us.”

Watch the new video for ‘Hymn To Dudes’ here:

‘Hymn To Dudes’ is out on 20th May via Practical Records – an independent label that releases music by California’s queer, trans, and experimental music communities.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Track Of The Day: Blonde Maze & Attom – ‘Anywhere’

Having been addicted to everything that New York artist Blonde Maze has created for the last few years, I was excited to hear that she’s now released another utterly blissful creation for me to lose myself in; this time in collaboration with Attom.

A perfect love song, ‘Anywhere’ is filled with a twinkling majestic splendour, oozing a soaring, shimmering soundscape and glitchy beats alongside the delicate, emotion-strewn power of Blonde Maze’s heartfelt vocals. Sparkling with a gentle sense of romanticism, it’s another captivating slice of alt-pop from one of my favourite artists. A truly beautiful offering that will give you goosebumps on first listen, with its luscious, ethereal haze. Of the track, Blonde Maze explains:

It encompasses the euphoric feeling of being in love and the willingness to go lengths for someone even when you are struggling yourself. It portrays dreamy, upbeat, yet longing vibes, something we’ve both felt a mix of in our lives and know people can relate.”

 

‘Anywhere’ is out now.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

EP: Emily Magpie – ‘Be Your Own Light’

Following her last release The Witching Hour, Be Your Own Light is the introspective latest EP from Bristol based solo artist Emily Magpie.

Although the opening track ‘Last Train’ deals with the pain of loss and heartbreak, the narrative takes a reflective approach. The emotional analysis lies within not only Magpie’s expressive vocals which soar high for the chorus, but also within the subtle flowing heartbeat of the musical layers. Gentle imagery of raindrops down a glass pane sit within the subconscious as a twinkling soundscape is created. 

Static energy eases us into ‘Stranger’ which contrasts with the sound of nature which sits quietly in the background. “I’m a feral childMagpie sings as though she is telling us – her confidants – down the telephone. Although she has just told us she is feral, it is hard to believe due to such a gentle landscape being created in the soft beats.

‘Stranger’ paves the way for the title track of the EP which seems to serve two purposes contained within its simmering synths and velvety soft bass. The first purpose being just for the simple joy of entertainment through music, but this could also be combined with an aid to meditation; the gentle sway of Magpie’s dreamy vocals forcing you to focus upon the message of finding happiness within your own self.

It’s seems the message behind the EP is that Be(ing) Your Own Light is not only the key to happiness, but also what makes us all uniquely beautiful. A message that is perfectly summed up in closing track, the brilliantly seductive ‘Things I’d Do?’.

Be Your Own Light is out now. Stream on Spotify or buy on iTunes.

Nicky Lee-Delisle
@Nicky___Lee

ALBUM: Belako – ‘Render Me Numb, Trivial Violence’

Basque country band Belako have shared their third album Render Me Numb, Trivial Violence via Primavera Sound’s in-house label El Segell; and it’s a “head twisting mix” of punk, techno, indie, & electro. The group are well versed in fusing genres, and their talent for doing so has thrived on this record.

Upbeat cacophony ‘Maskenfreiheit’ kicks things off in trademark Belako style, with a manic mix of electronics, guitar, and lush vocals. There’s no time to catch your breath as ‘Lungs’ immediately follows, still brimming with the same organised musical chaos.

‘Two Faced Simulation’ impresses with its gritty basslines, restless guitar riffs and heavier vocal delivery, whilst following track ‘Over The Edge’ keeps up the momentum with sharp, persistent percussion and more driving bass lines: the casual threat of tying your friend to “a chair” and “breaking his legs” has never sounded so appealing.

‘Nice Church’ is an alt-electronic joy of a tune, combining both buoyant and dense synth-sounds with watery-fx vocals and more powerful percussion. Even when they sing of losing emotional focus on ‘Stumble’, Belako keep everything together musically. ‘Stumble II’ is equally as well constructed, with gentle keys tripping over more lush vocals.

The stripped back, hazy ‘Strangers In A Box’ follows, before brief instrumental ‘Render Arp’ leads in to title track ‘Render Me Numb’: permeated by strong vocals and forceful beats. The uplifting party-style synths on ‘The Fiend Thinker’ will get your feet moving, whilst the happily named ‘Something To Adore (Arinau)’ rolls out in the same passionate vein.

Penultimate track ‘Hegodun Baleak II’ meanders musically for five minutes, before the brief ‘Maskenfreiheit II’ bookends this fusion of indie, electronic, alternative sounds. With Render Me Numb, Trivial Violence, Belako have proved they’re adept at creating carnivalesque, ornate, considered sounds.

Render Me Numb, Trivial Violence is available now. Follow Belako on Facebook for more updates.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut