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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

These Go to 11: Interviewing Fear of Men

Our fifth interview is to the Fear of Men's lead singer, Jessica Weiss, a band that, if you follow this blog (thank you, thank you) is simply one of my biggest crushes... since... since I first hear The National's "Fake Empire". So imagine how happy I am to bring you her answers. These Go to 11!

Jessica Weiss, Fear of Men
Jess Weiss, fearless indiepop
This very young quartet from London-Brighton stole my heart a year ago and, luckily, they don't seem to be willing to give it back to me. Their first tunes arrived in 2011, and it was already obvious here was a very special band, something that mind blowing pieces like "Green Sea", "Mosaic" and "Your Side", appeared in 2012, confirmed. Earlier this year their flawless singles compilation "Early Fragments" (look for it at the blog's best EPs of the year), came out, with debut album expected for Spring 2014. Incredibly catchy yet substantial, dreamy indiepop with traces of post-punk, full of jangly chords and explosive hooks hiding gloomy lyrics, and with the killer voice of Jessica Weiss, our interviewed, on top. Here we go!

1. First record that you bought (be honest)
The first album is probably something like Destiny’s Child. Nothing wrong with a good pop song!

2. First and last concert you have attended (be honest too!) 
First concert would be some DIY show put on by friends when I was about 14 or 15. And the last- we played with Dismemberment Plan for ATP a couple of days ago, that was pretty great. The last show I bought tickets to was maybe Merchandise, also really good. I was depressed by the number of people watching through camera phones though.

3. Guilty pleasure (song/band you shouldn’t like but you do, yes, it’s the embarrassing question)
Katy Perry- Roar. It has some incredible hooks.

4. Most precious music item you own (collector mode on)
I’m not a collector in the way that I would freak out over a first edition of a Beatles vinyl or something, but the most precious record to me is ‘In the Aeroplane Over the Sea’. It is so sincere and honest and unapologetic that I feel like it’s a rhetoric on how to live and feel.

The National, the BAND in capital letters. And a classic below
5. Favorite lyrics (not yours)
I am a total lyrics fiend, forever writing down phrases I enjoy in a little notebook, but then not being able to chose a specific part so I just write out the whole song… The Smiths, The National, PJ Harvey, Neutral Milk Hotel are my favourites.

6. Musician/s you would like to meet (should be alive, for obvious reasons, but you can choose a dead one too)
Kate Bush- a very inspiring person with complete faith in her vision and so much original thought. The National- I really admire how patient they have been. They just kept making brilliant records, and have achieved success as a result of that, they’ve grown very naturally. Patti Smith.

7. Favorite artwork album (not yours)
Patti Smith, ‘Horses’. All of Robert Mappelthorpe's photos of Patti Smith are really striking and confrontational, and I love that.

8. Books or movies? Depending on your answer recommend us one (trick: you can choose both)
I prefer to read. I am reading a biography of Samuel Beckett at the moment by Diedre Bair which is very good.

9. Song (of yours) you are most proud of
There are a lot of songs on the new album I’m really proud of for different reasons. I’m very excited for people to hear our new songs.

10. What’s does it mean indie for you? (yes, the “serious question”)
However people view the genre of our music, I believe in a very punk, ethical sensibility of not compromising on artistic integrity or taking the easy way out, which I suppose is akin to ‘indie’. There have been times when we’ve made things harder for ourselves by sticking to our own agenda, and I think we’re a stronger, better band for it. Basically to me being indie is being smart, independent and not being taken advantage of.

11. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Living on my own having traveled the world playing music and making the records I want to make. Maybe having gone back to university.
Zillion thanks Jess!

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