LISTEN: Fern Ford – ‘Match’

Sparse beats and atmospheric electronics permeate ‘Match’, the debut single from Fern Ford. Released via AWAL, the track is a slow-burning soundscape inspired by Ford’s desire to overcome feelings of self doubt.

Best known as the drummer for Mercury Prize nominated band The Big Moon, Ford’s solo work is a world away from the garage-rock anthems she creates with the group, who released their second album Walking Like We Do earlier this year. On ‘Match’, Ford allows space for her musings about trusting your intuition with her tentative beats and ambient keys.

Speaking about the track, Ford explains: “I first started writing 8 years ago, armed with just a Casiotone 202 and a xylophone. Being the drummer in a band, I always felt like maybe I should stay in my lane and leave the song writing to the pros. It felt a bit like imposter syndrome, helped by the fact that the music I was making didn’t sound like the music I was hearing around me, which made me think that maybe I was doing it wrong. I soon realised that was silly. Over the years the self-doubt subsided and with a bit of practise, I finally found my voice. ‘Match’ is about trusting your intuition. It’s about realising your strength and finding comfort in the unknown.”

Listen to ‘Match’ below and follow Fern Ford on Spotify for more updates.

Photo Credit: George Selwyn-Brace

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Introducing Interview: St. Blue

Following the release of her latest single ‘I’m Not Your Baby’, St. Blue has proven that making the leap from cover artist to singer-songwriter in her own right was a risk worth taking. We caught up with the South London based singer to find out more.

Hi St Blue, welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about your sound?
Thank you for having me. The sound I set out to achieve for this first collection of songs was dreamlike and uplifting. I grew up listening to indie and ’80s music, so I’ve always loved finding hooks outside of the vocal melody, with the guitar and bass lines having just as much of a catchy input. 

When did you decide to pursue a career in music?
I’ve been in and out of music for about fifteen years. It was always something that I kept going back to but more as an escape from whatever else was going on in my life. In terms of putting original music out there, I guess I never really had the confidence to think about it seriously until two years ago. The records I have today are created by piecing together years of song writing material – it felt like the right time.

Your new single ‘I’m Not Your Baby’ is out now – can you tell us what it’s all about?
‘I’m Not Your Baby’ is about a girl I was dating after a major relationship ended. There was so much about the two of us together that we knew would never work but I think that’s why it was right at the time. I wanted to get across that sometimes we are able to act out of habit rather than feeling.

Who would you say are your main musical influences?
So many artists have inspired my music, whether directly or indirectly. I’d say my older influences include Dusty Springfield and Dionne Warwick. More recent artists include Banks, Lykke Li and Jessie Ware.

How is your local music scene? Which venues did you enjoy going to before lockdown?
The North/East London music scene is great! Favourite venues have got to be The Old Queen’s Head, The Victoria, Oslo, EartH and The Roundhouse.

As we’re a new music focused site, are there any new/upcoming bands or artists you’d recommend to us?
My favourite finds of 2020 are The Big Moon, an indie band called Palace, and Arlo Parks is an absolute inspiration.

How do you feel the music industry is for new artists at the moment?
I think it can be really tricky for new artists at the moment, especially as audiences have become more focussed on social media rather than live experiences. I think it can be harder for people with more of an old soul approach as well; this notion that they may not be heard if they’re not promoting online. I’ve learnt so many things since I first released music in November. I think it’s important for us to focus more on our art and not necessarily the amount of attention it’s getting. Your audience will follow in time if you are true to yourself.

Despite the lockdown, what are you hoping to have achieved by the end of 2020?
I’ve been writing brand new material and I’m planning on releasing an EP by the end of 2020. The sound will be more of a relaxed, off beat vibe and more vocally lead. I’ll still be adding some catchy bass lines and guitar parts, as I will be concentrating on a sound that is more organic and live. I have an amazing relationship with my producer and he manages to capture exactly what it is I’m going for.

Huge thanks to St. Blue for answering our questions!

 

‘I’m Not Your Baby’ is out now.

GIHE Tracks Of 2019

It’s that time of year again when we look back at some of our musical highlights. And what a year for new music it’s been – from empowering guitar-driven anthems and gritty electro beats, to dreamy indie-pop, our ears have been pretty lucky!

Over the next week, we’ll be sharing our favourite gigs, albums, events and Ones To Watch for 2020, but for now, here are our top tracks of 2019. Have a read, and a listen!

Clt Drp – ‘Speak To My’
Having completely blown us away live at The Finsbury in June, Brighton trio Clt Drp are one of the most exciting bands I’ve come across this year. With the immense, thrashing beats, fuzz-filled whirring hooks and soaring, gritty vocals of ‘Speak To My’, the empowered energy of their unique electro-punk sound is showcased perfectly. (Mari Lane – Co-Founder/Managing Editor)

Scrounge – ‘Badoom’
Savage guitar riffs and driving beats form the basis for South London duo Scrounge’s single ‘Badoom’. Taken from their debut EP Ideal, released via Fierce Panda, the track showcases the band’s ability to take relatable concepts such as feeling burned out, and turn them in to punchy, cathartic sounds. Check out the karaoke inspired visuals that accompany the track here. (Kate Crudgington – Co-Founder/Features Editor)

ILL – ‘Kick Him Out The Disco’
We’re all in agreement at GIHE that ILL’s track ‘Kick Him Out The Disco’ is a BANGER! These grrrls blend the best bits of punk, noise, and keys to create cathartic anthems about standing up for yourself, and not letting the bastards grind you down. ‘Kick Him Out The Disco’ is a “glittered middle finger” to anyone who’s tried to manipulate you, or who made you question your self-worth. (KC)

Lizzo – ‘Juice’
Bam! As soon as this piece of pure pop magic hit the radio, it got my attention. ‘Juice’ is perfectly constructed; its opening bars draw you in, and before you know it, you’re shouting along and belting out the ‘ya-ya’ chorus. I defy you to listen to this song and stay still. If you’re not running to – or already on – a packed dancefloor, you’ll be shimmying in your seat. It’s sunny, fun and so empowering. ‘Juice’ was my introduction to Lizzo and my love affair with her has blossomed throughout 2019. Her beautiful album artwork, fabulous statement outfits (two words: finger handbag!), and that Glasto performance sealed the deal. My four-year-old sometimes likes to sing along to ‘Juice’ in the car, thankfully neglecting the naughty words. When he does, it reminds me how lucky we are to have a popstar like Lizzo. Body positive, funny, filthy. She’s an inspiration.
(Vic Conway – Contributor)

God Colony (feat. Samirah Raheem) – ‘Girls’
You might recognise Samira Raheem from her 2 minute interview at Amber Rose’s Slutwalk in 2018. This video caught the attention of UK Producers God Colony, who approached Raheem to collaborate. The result of that collaboration is ‘Girls’ – an encouraging call-to-arms laced with fierce lyrics, and indutrial-tinged, progressive beats. Always remember: “Every dog has his day / and bad bitches too”. (KC)

Pallas Athene – ‘Through Hell’
One of my absolute favourite songs of the year, ‘Through Hell’ is taken from Pallas Athene’s debut self-titled EP. Exploring themes of man vs machine and the dissolution of self, this is the latest single from the EP which I’m so into – I just love its spaced out vocals and calming chords. Keep up the great work! Looking forward to the future of Pallas Athene.
(Tash Walker – Co-Founder/Digital Editor)

Grizzly Coast – ‘High Functioning’
A GIHE team favourite, ‘High Functioning’ by Grizzly Coast is a track that has got firmly into my head. It’s all about holding your life together in every place, but your own head. Of the track, Grizzly Coast explains: “I was going through a difficult time with my OCD choosing to power forward and work towards my goals”, but she found the purpose and drive to stay confident through it all, and we are very thankful for that. ‘High Functioning’ is a total tune, keep up the great work Grizzly Coast, we’re behind you 100%! (TW)

Amahla – ‘Dorothy’s Verses’
Having played legendary venues such as The Jazz Cafe and The Roundhouse, and garnered support from the likes of BBC Radio 1 Extra and 6Music’s Tom Robinson, Hackney native Amahla this year released the poignant ‘Dorothy’s Verses’. Exploring what truth is through the story of her grandmother, and reflecting on the power of female voices, ‘Dorothy’s Verses’ flow with rich, impassioned vocals alongside luscious sweeping hooks, creating a truly spellbinding – and deeply stirring – offering. (ML)

Grimes – ‘Violence’
It’s funny, looking back at 2019, I could swear this song has been out longer than a mere three months. Grimes has always been a bit beyond me up to now: too saccharine for my artsy side, too much of an art angel for my pop tastes, but ‘Violence’ hits the sweet spot. Haunting beats, an insistent hook and candied vocals that bitterly talk of a romance that’s damaging, controlling but satisfying. With 2019’s batshit political and cultural wars veering between poles, ‘Violence’ pins it all to the floor.
(John McGovern – Contributor)

Catbear – ‘Unrequited Love’
‘Unrequited Love’ is the second single from Catbear, and what a tune! Fully home-recorded, self-produced, and with a heavy helping of synths. In their own words Catbear say: “We make music for the enjoyment of it. We are two good friends that love each other and we love making music together. There is no other agenda. And with that attitude we want to inspire young women and LGBTQ people like us to not only go form a band, but to take control over every aspect of their music. You can be a guitarist, you can be a drummer. You can make beats, you can record and produce your own music. You can be anything.” (TW)

BEA1991 – ‘Loser Wins’
Amsterdam-based artist and musical polymath BEA1991 swept me away with this track, taken from her debut album Brand New Adult. I love her subtle, soaring vocals and there’s a beautiful accompanying video to this track that I recommend you check out too. (KC)

Sui Zhen – ‘Perfect Place’
Despite having now released three albums, I only heard Sui Zhen for the first time this year. And it was love at first listen. Inspired by how we exist in the digital age, ‘Perfect Place’ flows with glitchy beats and twinkling, ‘80s-inspired hooks alongside Sui Zhen’s quirky, honey-sweet vocals. An instantly infectious slice of sparkling alt-pop that I haven’t been able to stop listening to. The whole album, Losing, Linda, is pretty magical. (ML)

Despicable Zee – ‘Counting Cars’
Despicable Zee is an Oxford based musician, composer and performer. I am so very into this track of hers, ‘Counting Cars’. I cannot get enough of the samples and composition – so so good! Despicable Zee aka Zahra is also the director of the Young Women’s Music Project working alongside and guiding young female musicians. Her third EP, Atigheh, is self-produced and independently released, check it out now. (TW)

The Big Moon – ‘Your Light’
The Big Moon proved they’re as talented on two wheels as they are on two feet in the accompanying video to their superb single ‘Your Light’. With its catchy chorus, buoyant melodies and feel-good lyrics, it’s the perfect boost for anyone who’s feeling blue about the current state of affairs. The song is lifted from their upcoming sophomore album Walking Like We Do, which is set for release on 10th January 2020 via Fiction Records. (KC)

Captain Handsome – ‘I Wish I Had A Dog’
Having been a pretty massive fan of indie-pop superstars Fightmilk for a couple of years now, I was excited when Lily from the band shared the first single from her new solo project, Captain Handsome. A poignant exploration of every-day anxieties, ‘I Wish I Had A Dog’ showcases Lily’s distinctive silky-smooth-yet-gritty vocals whilst oozing a touching raw emotion. With a twinkling lo-fi scuzz alongside the sensitivity of Lily’s refreshingly honest and consistently relatable lyricism, it’s a slice of effervescent indie-pop that tugs at the heartstrings in all the right ways. I can’t wait to hear more from Captain Handsome in 2020. (ML)

You can listen to all our favourite tracks now, in this handy playlist! We’ll be adding to the playlist as we share our other end of year features – keep your eyes/ears peeled!

 

 

Mari Lane / @marimindles
Kate Crudgington / @kcbobcut
Tash Walker / @maudeandtrevor
Vic Conway

John McGovern / @etinsuburbiaego

LIVE: The Big Moon – The Lexington 17.10.19

Joy incarnate: The Big Moon‘s sold out headline show at The Lexington on Thursday night was a playful, polished affair that left us grinning from ear to ear. The four-piece have been busy supporting The Pixies on their UK tour, but found time to debut some of their new material to excited fans for their final gig of 2019.

The band were left beaming after their affectionately dubbed “guinea pigs” responded with cheerful applause to song’s from their sophomore album, Walking Like We Do, which is set for release in January 2020. The tracks are filled with the same buoyant melodies and charming choruses as that of their debut, Love In The 4th Dimension, and are sure to be popular singles upon their official release.

Their set opened with a trio of classic Big Moon tracks: ‘Silent Move Susie’, ‘Sucker’, and ‘Formidable’. Delivered with trademark enthusiasm and superb vocal harmonies, it paved the way for a series of new songs including ‘It’s Easy Then’, followed by older material such as ‘The Road’ and ‘Cupid’ during the latter half of the set. Lead vocalist Juliette broke the fourth wall during crowd favourite ‘Bonfire’, raising the room temperature by more degrees than we cared to count.

Whilst The Big Moon’s music is undeniably infectious, it’s their camaraderie on stage that makes their live shows such a joy to witness. Juliette, Soph, Celia & Fern have an enviable chemistry; they bounce off of each other (sometimes literally) throughout their set, and always appear relaxed and at ease in each other’s company. Their attitude and their music shows that even in the darkest of times, there’s always a space for friends to come together to have fun and let go for a while.

This is proven once again during their performance of recent single ‘Your Light’ at the end of their set. Its luscious chorus and atmospheric keys fill the venue with a shiny sense of optimism, a feeling that’s enhanced by the reflections of the disco ball above the crowd’s heads. The Big Moon proved once again that they are stars in the making, and we’re one of many fans who were blinded by their glorious garage-pop light.

Pre-order your copy of The Big Moon’s new album, Walking Like We Do, here.

Follow the band on Facebook for more updates.

Photo Credit: Pooneh Ghana

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut