FAULT Travel: Moderat, Gunnar Haslam and Copenhagen.

We flew into Copenhagen with a sense of excitement at the weekends activities ahead. A night of electronic delights at Culture Box club a government backed club (David Cameron please take note!) and then a Sunday night with Moderat at Vega which has played host to greats such as Bowie, Prince and Bjork to name but just a few.

 

We headed for dinner at Fiskebar (www.fiskebaren.dk) in the Meatpacking district, spot on cocktails, craft beers and beautiful mostly fish (obviously) small plates put together by head chef Jamie Lee who trained under Jason Atherton in London. Service is on point and the busy, bustling atmosphere made for a great warm up for our night in the Danish capital.

 

Just a few metres up the road is Warpigs (www.warpigs.dk), a cavernous metal/rock brew pub. They just so happened to be having their own birthday party that night and giving away 1000 beers, so we timed it perfectly! At the far end of Meatpacking is the always lively and one of the originals bars of the district ‘Jolene’. Free to get in and full to the rafters, great sound system and a disco/house set being played to a young and unpretentious crowd. We danced, we drank we were merry and we were also set up very nicely for the main event…

Gunnar Haslam is a New York based D.j/producer, if you like all things electronic, minimal and oh so very danceable then this is your bag. Having just released his 3rd LP Lebesque Measures and new floor smashing singles ‘Sirenik’ and ‘Hellegat’ on the Athabaskan Languages EP Gunnar is a hell of busy guy and his set didn’t disappoint. Flowing effortlessly through waves of sounds almost film set landscapes but with a driving kick drum that kept a pulsating room of international ravers dancing all night. Culture box is dark, sweaty and loud, perfect for the rhythms of electronica. Hats off to Gunnar it was a great a set, Culture Box ticked all the right boxes for a forward thinking club of this nature.

Having got home whilst the sun was rising above beautiful Copenhagen we did what all fine British people did and carried on drinking at the hotel before crashing and burning until the next afternoon where we arose to get ready for Moderat at Vega.

Moderat  of course made up of Modeselektor members Sebastian Szary and Gernot Bronsert and Apparat artist Sascha Ring. Unless you have had your head in the sand for the last few years you would know these guys are hotter than a white poker right now. Tickets for all their European tour gigs sold out in minutes, we were very lucky indeed to witness the kings  of electronica take to the stage to the adoring masses gathered in this 1500 capacity but intimate venue.

Sacha’s vocals combined with a one of the best light shows I’ve witnessed in a while were the perfect accompaniment to all the boys hits, they played them all here. The techno crafted ‘A new error’ floor pounding ‘Milk’ and current favourite ‘Reminder’ were all superbly performed. Five songs for an encore is enough to send even the most hard fans home happy so finishing on the classic ‘Bad Kingdom’ did just that.

Waking up on Monday still gushing over the Moderat set and feeling like we hadn’t eaten for an eternity we took a sunny stroll to Torvehallerne food market (www.torvehallernekbh.dk). An infinite amount of deliciousness housed all under a giant glass framework. Tortillas by an ex Noma chef, Prosecco and Charcuterie to follow, Smorgasbord, Coffee and Juices (the hangover special went down well) were our other pit stops they seem to have a stall for everyone and we were so full a lie down in the park and a little bit of Danish sun on our faces before we made the return journey to London. Thank you Moderat, Gunnar and Copenhagen (I think we LOVE you).

Words: LXN Collective

FAULT Future: Freddie Dickson

 

We recently spent the afternoon with Freddie Dickson, the young voice setting music blogs ablaze with his dark ‘Doom Pop’ sound. Courting comparisons to Lana del Rey and the legendary Nick Cave, Dickson has just today released the video for his new single ‘Speculate‘,  which has already been played on Annie Mac’s show on Radio 1 and Jo Good’s on XFM.

It’s taken from an EP, of the same name, out April 13th on Columbia. Dickson has also announced an intimate headline show at The Waiting Room in Stoke Newington on 1st April, before heading out on the Communion New Faces tour on the 20th.
Freddie Dickson (2015), photographed by Constance Meath Baker

Freddie Dickson (2015), photographed by Constance Meath Baker

What are your influences and how have you arrived at this current ‘Doom Pop’ sound?

In the early days it was Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Van Morrison, and all those guys I had grown up on. Then as I got older I became more into production- The XX, Lana del Rey, Florence + the Machine, Plan B. I wanted an all-encompassing style for my music.

When did you start writing?

I didn’t start singing until I was 18 at an open mic, but I had been writing since I was 15/16. It just got to a point where I realised I didn’t want anyone else to be singing my songs.

When you did start performing, was it something that came easily to you?

No, I was so shy! But I just drilled my way through endless open mics. I guess I ‘Ed Sheeran’d’ my way through it! (laughs)

Were people quick to take notice?

No, not until I changed my sound. To begin with, I was just too stuck in the past. I was trying to be Bob Dylan, and no-one should try that! I got bored myself, and I did a gig in East London when I was 21 and a friend was just like “that was really bad.” And I knew it.

But I went away, and got Logic on my laptop, and started developing the sound I have now. The artists I want to be like are the ones who constantly change- Plan B, Kanye, Bowie. I get bored so easily (laughs)

Freddie Dickson (2015), photographed by Constance Meath Baker

Freddie Dickson (2015), photographed by Constance Meath Baker

It’s interesting, watching sessions and live performances that you’ve done, to see how you take that production-based sound and transfer it into the realm of the live experience. How do you find the music changes when you perform it live?
I think the live experience has to be so different from the record – if you just try to mimic the recorded version, there’s nothing worse. It’s almost like you have to do a cover of your own song, and put some twist on it.

The visuals seem very important to your music- is that something you’re closely involved with?
Yeah I think it’s so important. All the artists I like – Nick Cave, Patti Smith – they created all this powerful imagery. It would be weird, given how dark my sound is, if I was styled with bright neon clothing, right? (laughs) I think it all has to fit together; how you’re photographed, how you look, the live performance.

Part of that process is collaboration, which seems to underpin so much of today’s music industry. Is that something that comes easily to you?
When I was first signed I had so many co-writing sessions set up for me, and none of them really worked. But  I eventually hit it off with someone and now I have this great team of musicians and producers who help me reach the exact thing I want. I’m not an accomplished musician, and I don’t even try to aspire to greatness because the singing is really my thing.

Freddie Dickson (2015), photographed by Constance Meath Baker

Freddie Dickson (2015), photographed by Constance Meath Baker

Does the writing process come easily to you?
No not at all! And I think that annoys so many of the people I work with (laughs) I like to make sure every word is perfect, and that every syllable comes out of my mouth easily. I could never be one of these people who writes three songs a week, they’d all sound the same!

It’s interesting to hear you talk in terms of before and after being signed. How has the process changed since being signed- are there new pressures that come with having a label?
Not really- my label has been really nice. We still do it in the same way, writing away in my bedroom, and they give me my own recording space with good speakers which is great. It’s like having a little office (laughs)

As you’re writing music, are you constantly listening to new material by other artists, or do you try to cut yourself from other people’s work?
No, I follow a lot of blogs and love just diving into new music. I’d love to work with a hip-hop band, or a dream collaborator like Nas or Sia! I think she’s amazing because it’s so much about the songs and the voice.

Are you excited to be going on the Communion New Faces tour at the end of April?
Yeah I can’t wait  – it’s such incredible exposure! At the moment I can see how the fans are spread out and there are so many in places like Russia and Eastern Europe, but not enough in England yet (laughs)

Finally, what is your FAULT?
Scotch Eggs. And not being able to write songs very quickly.

 

All photography by Constance Meath Baker

David Bowie Is

Running from 23rd March – 11th August the V&A are presenting the first international retrospective of Bowie’s extraordinary career as a cult icon; following his life and work from starting out as David Jones in Brixton, through the rise and fall of Ziggy Stardust and his 1980’s comeback.

This exsquisite exhibition displays an array of Bowie’s personal items such as never-before-seen storyboards, handwritten set lists and lyrics, original costumes, album artwork, sketches, musical scores and diary entries revealing the evolution of some of his most creative ideas.  More than 300 articles are exhibited here in the form of fashion, photography and film/video. Bowie has even submitted some of his own instruments.  The exhibition explores his numerous collaborations with various other artists and designers.

Ziggy Stardust bodysuits (1972) designed by Freddie Burretti

Other incredible contributions include photography by Brian Duffy; album sleeve artwork by Guy Peellaert and Edward Bell; visual excerpts from films and live performances including The Man Who Fell to Earth, music videos such as Boys Keep Swinging and set designs created for the Diamond Dogs tour (1974).

This is one for all the Bowie fanatics and anyone looking to relive the Bowie years!

Tickets are available to purchase at the Museum in advance or on the day of your visit. You are advised to arrive at the V&A for when the Museum opens at 10.00 for the best chance of purchasing a ticket. Please note tickets bought on the day may not be for immediate entry to the exhibition, but for later on that day. The price for a Full Adult ticket is £15.50.

 

Words by Joelle Thurston