FAULT Premieres Jake Bugg’s ‘Waiting’ ft. Noah Cyrus and photoshoot preview

Photography: Conor Clinch | Curated by Rachel Gold | Styling: Alexx Dougherty |Words: Miles Holder

In a time when sensation and the absurd makes the artist, Jake Bugg is a fresh retreat from all the industry fluff. Jake Bugg first came to prominence with the release of his self titled debut album and while his sound has evolved, his impeccable songwriting talent hasn’t wained.

Today, we’re very proud to premiere the latest music video to come off from album ‘Hearts That Strain’ as well as a preview of our exclusive photoshoot and interview with Jake for our upcoming print issue. Entitled ‘Waiting’, The video is shot in LA by acclaimed director Andrew Douglas. The yearning tone that we’ve all come to love from Jake Bugg’s vocal (especially on this new record) blends surprisingly effortlessly with the juxtaposed country vocal of  Noah Cyrus, perfectly evoking the song’s sultry yet melancholy sound.

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You told NME that this album was “make or break it” for you and that’s a lot of pressure to put on yourself?

I think I’m always going to feel that way when making music and quite honestly, it’s the truth. If my music doesn’t work out, then there’s a chance I can lose the ability to continue doing the things I love. For me, that’s playing music and travelling the world, and I’m always going to feel that but I’m really happy with the album, we’ll just have to wait and see.

 

You were very young when your debut came out and you were c0ntintually lauded as the “next big thing”, was that kind of media expectation and hype unhelpful from your perspective?

I got into this to play music and travel the world, and that side of the press comes with it so there will always be media pressure, but I didn’t get into it for the journalist approval, so I never let it affect me.

 

Hearts That Strain was fully recorded out in Nashville, what was your main reason for recording it out there?

There’s a whole sophisticated music scene out in Nashville, and I love country music, so that was one reason. The level of musicianship is so high in Nashville too so it was also great to get out there and play with amazing people and I’ve always been inspired by a lot of the musicians out there too.

 

Lyrically, Southern Rain is one of the darker songs on the album but you’re singing it over a comparatively sunnier melody, is that something you always intend to do with your songwriting?

I believe it’s nice to have songs and even the darker songs there should be a glimmer of hope. I like that you say that, I like to hear people’s interpretations of songs and I think it’s important for everyone to keep their narrative and that’s one of the reasons I’ve never liked music videos so much because they paint a story for the listener. I’ve always like the idea of one song meaning one thing to me as the writer and an entirely different thing to you the listener.

What’s changed most about you since your debut?

My determination to get the finishing product when it comes to my songs. I’m determined to work a lot harder, and it’s worked. This album was written and produced in a couple of months, and to me, it’s my best body of work.

 

 

What is your FAULT?

My biggest FAULT is thinking that music is the most important thing in the music industry because it’s quite obviously not that way anymore.

 

Is that something you’ve come to accept or does it still effect you?

There’s no escaping it, and the only thing I can do is try to stick to what I do best and try to write the music that I do. I’m never going to compete with the stuff in the charts because it’s not about your song making it talent, success in the industry is just fueled so much by your celebrity and sales figures. Fashion first, music second.

 

Look out of the full photoshoot and interview in FAULT Issue 27 – COMING SOON…

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Astroid Boys assemble an exclusive FAULT playlist

It may only be midweek, but that didn’t stop Astroid Boys joining us for an exclusive Rock VS Grime playlist. Here are there top picks from both worlds.

 

Manga st hilaire – running out

It’s an old song but the lyrics are spot on.
Relatable. Honest. Powerful.

Mace – fresh prince of the diff

A top Cardiff boy talking about being king of the ends and he is. He always brings good energy

Sonny double 1 – mo farah

A top Cardiff anthem and always gets the crowd bouncing
Known him since I was a kid.

Faith – berry

London born Cardiff resident – beautiful girl beautiful voice. Great song

Daniel og – solange

Classic good flow. Raps. Vibes. Beat selection.

Turnstile – gravity

Energy energy energy.

Trash talk – awake

We have great memories of touring with them – great band and great tunes.

Death grips – guillotine

Pure unrelenting brutal aggression.

Expire – just fine

Good memories of arms swinging in Europe supporting them on tour.

Rotting out – street prowl

Makes me wanna cycle really fast down hill

 

Check out Astroid Boys’ own ‘Cheque’ below.

 

Catch AB on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Phantom of the Opera: We tour Her Majesty’s Theatre to meet Ben Forster as he finishes his time in the iconic role

Since it opened in the West End in 1986, The Phantom of the Opera has been a staple of London musicals and is now the second longest-running West End musical ever. Since 1st February 2016, the man at the helm of the titular role has been Ben Forster. Here, as he prepares to exit the show, we caught up with Ben to get candid about the experience of playing such an iconic role.

Let’s start at the start: tell us about how you got involved with Phantom, and how you came to even be considered for the role…

So obviously I did Superstar, the TV show, so I met Andrew [Lloyd Webber] throughout that whole process and I think working with him and having a relationship over that period was something that was beneficial. When I then did Evita for Bill Kenwright, it was a completely different scene; it was only a cameo, but performing ‘On This Night of a Thousand Stars’, it was very operatic and I don’t think anyone had really heard me do that sort of style. I knew I could do it because I’d trained in those sort of styles, but I was mostly known at that point for singing pop/rock. Andrew saw me do that on the opening night, and he came up to me afterwards and said ‘I think you’d be an amazing Phantom.’ I was like ‘really?’ – I thought I’d been pigeon-holed. When he said it to me, I said ‘just tell me when’. The next day I was at his house to sing through the soundtrack.

 

Were you already familiar with the soundtrack at that point?

I knew them all because they’re so famous, and I’d studied them at college, so I felt OK. I went to his house which was just ridiculous, and we were just sitting there singing through the songs. It was an amazing experience, and he was just immediately like, ‘I really think you’d be able to bring something new to Phantom.’ Next I came in to sing for Cameron [MacKintosh, the producer] and they offered me the part. I had to wait a year before it was announced.

 

What is it about Phantom you feel keeps it pulling in audiences after 31 years?

I think it’s completely a mix. The music is amazing, but it’s when you mix the music with the set, the visuals, the costumes, the actors and singers, the lighting, the sound – everything just comes together and creates magic. Not many people have seen Phantom just the once – they’ve seen it two, three, 10 times, and it’s because it keeps evolving. My interpretation would have changed it for a whole new group of people, and the next Phantom and Christine will do the same. You’re coming back and you’re seeing a different layer and a different perspective on a role which you already love because you’ve invested in it before.

What’s been a highlight of playing the Phantom for you?

There’s been so many! Winning an Olivier award – it was amazing. Going into the 30th Year we did an amazing night; Michael Crawford was here, the original cast, and there was just such an electric atmosphere… a night I’ll never really forget. The stage door is always a highlight for me – though I know some don’t like doing it. But [Phantom] is one of those parts that’s been done by so many people, and you can question yourself constantly about whether or not you’re living up to someone’s expectations, or whether you’re doing it right, and when you go outside and there’s 50-60 people outside saying, ‘Oh my god, I was in tears, I really felt your performance.’ Even if it’s just those 50 people who liked it, and nobody else did, at least I’ve left an impression on someone. All actors are really insecure, so it really helps.

How about your favourite scene or song from the show?

The final lair: it’s where everything starts to make sense. It’s when I can really turn the audience to feel something for me. I’m such a monster at the end – I think you could almost think I could kill Christine there. It’s the most challenging part, both in terms of vocals and in acting. It’s a brilliant scene, one of the reason I still love the show, and why it continues to challenge me. That’s what makes [being the Phantom] the best part in the West End.

I saw a review praising your performance as ‘creepy yet vulnerable’ – it’s true, despite all his shortcomings, we do feel empathy for the Phantom. How do you find the balance between portraying the two?

It’s hard. This not a criticism of any past Phantom or performance, but I really felt he should be a monster – he does kill people, 30-50 people throughout the show – he should be scary. He has no social or human skill, he should be quite terrorizing – there’s so many lyrics that give that away. He’s quite mentally ill, he’s been put in a freakshow, he’s escaped and lived underground. Even though he’s a genius, he’s still not right. I wanted to scare people, and make people scared of him. The problem is that if you push that line, you have to make people feel for him in the end. You should almost want Christine to stay with him, even though it’s completely wrong. He’s crazy! And a murderer. But there’s a side in everyone that’s felt abandoned and lonely, and your human heartstrings as an audience member should see him as a human being. If someone was born with a distorted face these days, they wouldn’t be [cast aside], it’s a different time and world. If you look at the real truth of it – that he was just a disfigured, disabled man – now, that prejudice wouldn’t stand. When people say I’m crazy or scary or creepy, I take it as a win!

Tell us about the daily makeup and costume process…

It takes about an hour and a quarter, which has been whittled down loads. When we started it was closer to a three-hour process. Michael [Crawford] used to get the prosthetic pieces put on his face, but now they’re all hand-painted. There’s a bald cap that goes on my head, and then there’s prosthetics that get put on my face, and they’re hand-made and hand-painted every show – nothing’s kept. It changes every day and is so fresh and organic; everything is done to an impeccable level. There’s 6 or 7 makeup artists available, but its usually lead by my main makeup artist, Tanya. There’s also 2 wigs, and then a full face of makeup.

The fans are such an integral part of Phantom’s success – they love you on Instagram – how much do you let their feedback, be that positive or negative, shape your portrayal of such an iconic character?

I’ve had someone at the stage door giving me notes before; ‘When you sing this line, I think you should do it a bit more intense’, and I was like, alright, there’s like 5 directors who are all paid to tell me what to do. But it’s fine, everyone has a favourite Phantom and a first Phantom, and people are always gonna compare me. I know that I’m doing a really different Phantom to what most people do. Sometimes when I watch others I think, they could have done that more, or this less. Actually, I just have to trust my own interpretation, I know in my mind who the Phantom is, and I wouldn’t have sang that line any more intensely, or softer. I’ve thought about every single line I sing in the show. It’s been worked through the entire team here, and I trust them completely. As soon as you question your integrity and body language, you don’t look or feel comfortable doing something, it’s suddenly not believable. Same with Buddy [Elf the Musical]– you’ve got to commit. If I’m gonna come in and go ‘SAAAANTA!’, you’ve got to do it from the innermost parts of your body and not feel like an idiot! There’s performances I’ve seen that I’ve loved that get a bad review, and much the same, seen comments on Twitter praising performances I didn’t care for. As long as some people like me, I don’t mind!

You’ve been spending time with new Phantom Ben Lewis – what advice have you passed on ahead of him taking over the role?

I’ve been telling him all the little tricks that no one will tell him! The things that you’d probably never notice. There’s a part where I’m hiding in a cross [in the Graveyard scene] and no one told me there’s a fan in there – for like 2 months! It’s so hot, it’s like being in a coffin, for 7-10minutes. One day I accidentally pressed something and a fan came on! No one told me there was a fan. It’s little things, there’s a fan in the cross, there’s tissues in the Angel [when The Phantom waits in the Angel ornament, hovering above the audience]. Even how to put Christine down, I worked out if I put my leg a bit higher up on the boat, I don’t have to bend down as much to put her down.

 

This Christmas you’re returning to the titular role of Elf in the musical- what was it about Elf that made you want to come back?

Elf is one of those absolute treats of a job. It was terrifying before I first did it [he previously played the role in 2014 and 2015] as I’d never done comedy, nor thought I was funny. I didn’t know whether I’d be able to make people laugh. It’s a massive crowd, and if a joke doesn’t land and no one laughs it’s really terrifying. But when it goes right, making 2,200 people laugh is a great feeling. It’s beautiful, and that story has such a nice heart. It’s perfect for Christmas. When I was asked to go back, I did debate whether I should be going back and forth in my career, but it’s one of those things, I’d miss it at Christmas if someone else was doing it in my place. I’m really looking forward to it!

How does Phantom compare to Elf?

I love that my career is being seen as that versatile. I feel finally I’m not being pigeon-holed. The similarities between the two characters though is that they’re both hidden children. The Phantom hasn’t ever really grown up, he’s not experienced life… and Buddy hasn’t either. One’s crazy and a bit weird, and one’s an elf!

What can we expect in the coming years? You have original music coming out…

Hopefully more of a ‘me’ year! I’d really love to get back to my music next year. I’d love to get out performing my own stuff. Maybe a different slant, as well as whatever else may come. I’m really looking forward to next year. I’ve worked solidly with just Sundays off since I did Rocky Horror. It’s been really intense and I’ve got six weeks off now. I want to take a nice holiday, see some places and come back and record and tour.

 

What is your FAULT?

Saturated fat. I just love eating! I love food. And I just can’t eat that much… I constantly battle, picking the healthy option, trying my best, but then every weekend I just eat, eat, eat, and feel awful all weekend.

You must burn some calories during the show?!

Yeah, but I’m stopping that soon! But I’ll carry on eating. My FAULT is dieting and food because I’ve gotta stay fit for my job. I love a sandwich… and cake… and coffee!

Do you work out for the show as well?

My voice doctor, when I started Phantom, asked if I was working out and when I told her yeah, she said, ‘you need to stop whilst you’re doing the show.’ She told me not to lift any weights, and not to do cardio. My neck was going really tense!

 

See more of Ben at his official website, or catch up with him on Twitter and Instagram.

 

Words Julie Bradley

Photography Jack Alexander

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Sundara Karma – Live at Brixton O2 Academy

Reading four-piece Sundara Karma played their biggest ever headline show on 5th October to a delirious crowd at Brixton O2 Academy. Comprised of vocalist/guitarist Oscar Pollock, drummer Haydn Evans, bassist Dom Cordell, and guitarist Ally Baty, the indie pop/rock band has been making music since the tender age of fourteen.

With support from Willie J. Healey and The Magic Gang, the quartet kicked off their gig with gothic number ‘Another Word for Beautiful’, before launching into the more upbeat crowd pleasers ‘A Young Understanding’ and ‘Loveblood’.

The evening saw the band play the entire ‘Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect’ album, intertwined with a few old favourites such as ‘Flame’, ‘Run Away’ and ‘In the Night’; much to the delight of their captivated fans, who sang along with Pollock word for word on almost every track. The androgynous frontman even jumped into the crowd during ‘Vivienne’.

“Is heaven such a fine thing?” Pollock sang on ‘Olympia’, bathed in the blue luminescence of the stage, which shifted to red as the gig progressed, three white orbs glowing behind him. 

Ending their set with ‘Explore’, Drummer Haydn Evans cast his sticks into the crowd before the band exited the stage to a fittingly roaring applause.

Sundara Karma’s lyrics might be about the trials and tribulations of youth, but their evolved sound offsets their young years. Filled with entrancing guitar riffs and soaring vocals, a live show with them is not to be missed.

Words Aimee Phillips

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FENTY Beauty Is About To Top Christmas Lists With Their Release Of The Galaxy Collection

A few weeks ago, FAULT attended the London launch of Fenty Beauty and from seeing the collection up-close, we have hopped on the hype train. Today, we’ve received information that Fenty Beauty’s holiday collection will be releasing THIS FRIDAY and we can barely contain our excitement.

Entitled ‘The Galaxy Collection’, you’ll truly look out of this world in their glitter-drenched assortments of lipsticks, glosses, eyeliner, eyeshadows! In Rihanna’s own words, the songstress turned business tycoon wanted the collection to be “glitter on glitter on glitter” and as a fully fledged “female boss” what Rihanna wants, Rihanna gets.

Fenty Beauty has already cut a swath through the exclusive beauty industry with the inclusive message of her line of Fenty foundations in over fifty shade. We have no doubt that the new Galaxy collection will be another top seller and it’s most certainly on the top of our Christmas list this year!

 

 www.fentybeauty.com     

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The House of Peroni – A celebration of Italian Citrus

Ahead of London Cocktail Week, The House of Peroni has returned once more to East London with even bigger and better treats.

Celebrating Italian Citrus, the event transports guests from one immersive experience to another. Guided by the best mixologists, you can experience the streets of Italy in the heart of London through a series of reimagined cocktails tailored to perfection.

Award-winning mixologist, Simone Caporale, will reprise his role as Master of Mixology but this time with a twist. He has taken a team of bartenders, paired with creative experts, on an inspiring trip to Northwest Italy where they were challenged to take Italian citrus fruits and translate them into bespoke Peroni-infused cocktails.

 

The line-up of guest bartenders includes leading mixologists from Swift, Chiltern Firehouse and The London EDITION, who will be coupled with the founder of florist Grace & Thorn, fragrance specialists from Earl of East London and illustrator, George Greaves. These innovative partnerships are designed to push the boundaries of traditional mixology, fusing scent, sight and taste to create something truly unique for visitors.

Their creations will include:

 CHINOTTO MONTEMORO:

Inspired by the Chinotto groves of Liguria this cocktail features dark rum, Martini Riserva Speciale Rubino, Amaro Nonino, chinotto jam and grapefruit and lemon juices. Topped with Peroni Ambra, the drink is completed with Luxardo cherries.

                                                            Created by Federico Doldi (Chiltern Firehouse) and Nik Southern (founder of florist Grace & Thorn)

 

LIMONI DELLA LIGURIA:

Celebrating lemon and inspired by the Riviera of Cinque Terre, this infusion features sweet Falernum Liqueur, Martini Riserva Speciale Am

 

brato, Grappa Nonino 41 Tradizione, lemon juice, rosemary syrup and topped with Peroni Nastro Azzurro. The garnish features dry lemon and rosemary.

                                                            Created by Davide Manzi (London EDITION), Niko Drafkos and Paul Firmin (scent experts and founders of Earl of East London)

 

BERGAMOT TRAMONTO:

 

Inspired by the streets of Genoa, the drink features Peroni Nastro Azzurro Gluten Free, ITALICUS, bergamot sherbet and lemon juice, topped with a refreshing citrus sorbet and thyme.

                                                            Created by Mia Johansson (founder of Swift) and George Greaves (illustrator)

 

 

We most certainly enjoyed the immersive experience and full heartedly recommend it to both cocktail lovers and first time sensory thrill seekers.

 

The House of Peroni takes residence at 
N&C Showrooms, 3-10 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6PG

Thursday 5th – Sunday 15th October

www.thehouseofperoni.com

 

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