Introducing Interview: The Frisbys

Having received praise from the likes of Amazing Radio, Gigwise and For Folk’s Sake, South London folk collective The Frisbys create twinkling, emotion-strewn offerings, oozing a sweeping musicality and celestial splendour.

With a new EP set for release this week, we caught up with Nicola Frisby from the band to find out more…

Hi, welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about The Frisbys? 
Hi! We are an alternative folk/country band from South London. Our band consists of myself (Helen – vocals, flute), my twin sister Nicola (vocals – guitar), my husband Sam Keer (electric guitar) and three of our friends from university/college – Sal Palekar (piano and violin), Will Cattermole  (bass) and Tom Finigan (dums). We will be releasing our third EP, My Wicked Mind this week and we’re looking forward to hopefully playing live again as soon as we possibly can!  

How did you initially all get together and start creating music?
Although Nicola and I have been writing music together since we were teenagers, our line up as a band has changed massively over the last few years. When Nicola and I started creating music, we were an acoustic duo playing locally around South London with just harmonies, guitar and a flute. Gradually as the years have gone by, we’ve recruited some amazing musicians who also happen to be some of our best friends. Every member of our band is a friend that we’ve met through studying music at college or university. The most wonderful thing is that making music together has helped to reunite us again and I know that both Nicola and I feel incredibly lucky for that.

Your new EP My Wicked Mind is out on Friday – can you tell us what it’s all about? Are there any themes running throughout the EP?
The title of My Wicked Mind stems from the idea that the human mind is just bonkers. I suppose I just find it strange how the mind can create such wonder and beauty, whilst at the same time be capable of causing so much anxiety and suffering. I wouldn’t say that this EP is thematic in its concept, but it is a collection of songs that explore both the inner turmoil and the resolute strength of the human mind. So, for example, the songs ‘I Heard’ and ‘Print’ are almost opposite viewpoints based on the same theme. ‘I Heard’ is a fighting song about pushing through even when everyone is telling you what you are trying to achieve is impossible, whereas ‘Print’ highlights the insecurity that lies beneath. Even if you believe in yourself and the path you’ve chosen, it can be very hard not to let those doubts overwhelm you. Everybody wants to be accepted. 

You’ve been compared to the likes of First Aid Kit and The Lumineers, but who would you say are your main musical influences?
Unsurprisingly, Nicola and I have very similar musical influences. Our early days listening to my mum’s Simon and Garfunkel records or my brother’s Nirvana collection has meant that we have a pretty varied taste in music; which would maybe explain why our music can be so hard to fit into one genre. We like everything. As individuals, we all have quite different musical tastes. I recently asked the band to compile some of their favourite artists for a Spotify playlist and it was pretty amazing how diverse some of the artists were. Nonetheless,  there are always points where our influences cross. I would say that, collectively, we are inspired by artists such as Carole King, Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Bruce Springsteen and The Beatles. 

How is your local music scene (in ‘normal’ times!)? Do you go to see lots of live music?
I actually moved very recently and so Covid has prevented me from getting out and about and testing out the local music scene, but before that we gigged a lot in the Croydon and South London area. Some of our very first gigs were gigging in South Croydon and we have a real soft spot for it in our hearts. What we’ve noticed as the years have gone by is that more and more of the venues that we used to play in have closed down and so now it can be quite difficult to find a venue that has a capacity for a band of our size. The good news is that there are some local musicians and venues who are constantly fighting this and putting on some excellent nights of music. I adore seeing live music and I try to see as much of it as I can. I prefer more intimate gigs to big arenas as I sometimes feel a little stifled by the environment. I need to move around and hate being restricted to a seat! One of the best gigs I’ve been to recently was watching Skunk Anansie in Brighton. The energy they created was just incredible and Skin’s stage presence is second to none.

And what can fans expect from your live shows?
I think our aim as a band is to make you feel something. Tom (our drummer) has a particular talent for creating set-lists and he always puts a lot of thought into making the set into a bit of a journey. We definitely don’t just have one style that we sit with, we try to mix it up. I love the fact that we can build the crowd’s energy with songs like our recent single ‘I Heard’, only to drop them back down again and make them almost silent with songs like ‘Give in to the Dark’. As horrible as it sounds, I quite like it when people tell me we made them cry! For me it means that we connected with them.

As we’re a new music focused site, are there any new/upcoming bands or artists you’d recommend we check out?
One of my favourite bands I have found over the last few years is an American band called Joseph. They are a band of three sisters who create the most incredible live sound I’ve ever heard. Other upcoming bands we’d recommend are Theo Katzman (a multi-instrumentalist from California) and FlagTwister, John Lovell, Scott McFarnon, Chloe Ray and Dave Sears who are all local musicians we love to listen to.

And how do you feel the music industry is for new bands at the moment – would you say it’s difficult to get noticed?
I think there are lots of really wonderful opportunities for new bands at the moments. For example, anyone can submit their music to be played on BBC Introducing and there are some fantastic blogs (like yourself) who are out there promoting new music. More affordable music software has meant that it is cheaper for people to create music themselves which is so wonderful, but it does mean that the music industry is very over-saturated. Most bands now realise that they can make music without record companies funding them and so that has meant that it is a much more level playing field. I think it has meant that bands have to work harder to get their music heard and maybe they have to be more creative about how they promote their music, but I don’t think that is necessarily a bad thing!

Finally, what does the rest of 2020 have in store for The Frisbys?
We recorded a live lock-down version of our new single, ‘I Heard’, in May and we are currently in the process of creating some more videos for our fans. We were hoping to be playing an EP release party this year and some festivals, but who knows what will be happening on the ‘live’ music front. Hopefully, we will find a way of playing an ‘online’ gig to help celebrate the release, so fingers crossed we can make something happen!

Massive thanks to Helen for answering our questions!

 

My Wicked Mind, the upcoming EP from The Frisbys, is out this Friday 26th June.

LISTEN: Siân Alexander – ‘Blizz’

Having previously charmed our ears as vocalist of Gold Baby, songwriter Siân Alexander has now shared her first solo material. In the spring of 2018 Siân tied an acoustic guitar, a keyboard, a suitcase and a flute to a folding trolley and made the long commute by tube, train, ferry and bus from London to County Wicklow in Ireland to write an album. And she has now shared the first single from the album.

Oozing a blissful, melancholic aura, ‘Blizz’ flows with twinkling melodies alongside Siân’s luscious smooth vocals. With a shimmering emotion and folk-strewn musicality, it’s a beautiful, contemplative ballad with a gritty edge; a simply spellbinding, goosebump-inducing, introduction to this solo collection.

Listen to ‘Blizz’ here:

 

Siân has committed to producing and releasing one song from the solo album each month. ‘Blizz’ will be followed by ‘Henry’ on the 18th of June, with all ten tracks due to be released before the year is out.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: @zeashanashraf

LISTEN: MAVICA – ‘Ada Road’

“You ask me how I feel about it, I feel it’s time to burn it down” MAVICA tentatively reveals on her latest track, ‘Ada Road’. Taken from her upcoming EP, Send Me To The Water, set for release on 24th April via Hidden Track Records; the London-based, Spanish songwriter explores feelings of doubt on this latest offering.

Originally from Cartagena in Spain, MAVICA (aka Marta Casanova) blends elements of indie, pop, and folk to create her emotive, smooth sounds. Since the release of her debut EP Gone in 2019, she’s performed at Mad Cool and Vida Festival, as well as supporting the likes of Roo Panes, Blanco White, and Alice Phoebe Lou on their tours. Now, with a second EP on the way, MAVICA is concentrating on moving forward, and accepting that change isn’t always a bad thing.

She explores this beautifully on ‘Ada Road’, as she eloquently explains: “I wrote ‘Ada Road’ when I was moving out of my old house. I was desperate for a new home, and felt very lost. It felt like I was jumping into an abyss of nothingness and it was a really scary time, where I didn’t know if it was worth staying in London or not. Because of this uncertainty, I felt like my creative output was changing and I didn’t quite understand where it was going, where I was going. I was born in a small town in the South of Spain where the sea is a big part of life there. In this song, I talk about sending me back to the water. When everything was going wrong in London, all I wanted was to go back home to the sea. That anxiety almost crushed me and I wrote this song to get it out, like I needed to expel it in some way.”

MAVICA’s talent for turning personal difficulty in to ear-melting, honest tunes is what makes her music so captivating. Her moving vocals and considerate lyrics, fused with both folk and pop elements in the chorus make ‘Ada Road’ an affecting, but enjoyable listen. Watch the accompanying video for the track below, and follow MAVICA on Spotify and Facebook for more updates.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Introducing Interview: Chloe Foy

Following acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing and BBC 6Music’s Steve Lamacq, Manchester-based artist Chloe Foy has just released her enchanting new EP.

An introspective collection of reflective offerings, Callous Copper showcases Foy’s smooth, rich vocals and stirring heartfelt emotion alongside glistening sweeping string arrangements.

We caught up with Chloe to find out more…

Hi Chloe, welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m a singer-songwriter living in Manchester, originally from Gloucestershire, trying my best to do what I love.

How did you start creating music?
I had always been musical, and started off learning classical music, but then picked up a guitar when I was about 14, learnt a few basic chords and started to write my own songs. A lot was going on in my life then and it was my most instinctive form of expression.

Your new EP Callous Copper is out now – can you tell us what it’s all about? Are there any themes running throughout the album?
There’s not a lyrical theme as such, other than the fact my songs are all inspired by this weird thing we do called life. There’s themes of love and death and mental health too. Really, it was an opportunity for me to realise this idea of doing a record with a string quartet, which I had wanted to do for a while.

You’ve been compared to the likes of Laura Marling and Lucy Rose, but who would you say are your main musical influences?
I think they are probably up there with some of the big ones, as well as Neil Young and Fleetwood Mac.

How is your local music scene? Do you go to see lots of live music?
Manchester is great for live music. There’s usually something going on every day of the week that you can go to. These days I’m busier, so I don’t get to see as much as I’d like but I still try and see a fair amount.

And what can fans expect from your live shows?
Heartbreak.

As we’re a new music focused site, are there any new/upcoming bands or artists you’d recommend we check out?
There are some great North West artists who I love – Caoilfhionn Rose, Katie Mac, Hannah Ashcroft, Lindsay Munroe – all amazing female artists making diverse and beautiful music.

And how do you feel the music industry is for new bands at the moment – would you say it’s difficult to get noticed?
I think it’s tough. There’s an abundance of music out there so it’s hard to be heard above the noise. I think it’s easier than ever to get your music onto platforms like Spotify and start to make a few little waves, but to get further and make a sustainable living I think is tough without a strong team behind you.

Finally, what does the rest of 2020 have in store for Chloe Foy?
A headline tour with my string trio in March, to get out and play songs from my forthcoming EP, and hopefully some trips further afield, as well as some festival slots to be announced!

 

Callous Copper is out now. Catch Chloe Foy live at The Islington on 4th March via AntiFraglie.