Aaron releases ‘Letters to Johnny’ EP

 

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Aaron is a twenty-two year old singer-songwritter based in London who just released her highly anticipated debut EP entitled “Letters to Johnny”.

‘Letters to Jonny’, contains five songs on which Aaron collaborated with some of the industry’s brightest upcoming writers and producers. Mark Tieku (Tieks) has previously written and produced for Florence + The Machine, The XX and remixed Rudimental, whilst Toby Davies has worked with Alex Clare, Sinead Harnett and George the Poet.

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The EP is buzzing with an eclectic mix reminiscing of TV of the Radio and Little Dragon with a bit of a jazzy-pop sprinkled on top. Looking from afar, Aaron belongs to the dream pop genre, with 80’s Madonna, Kate Bush and Cocteau Twins ringing in your ears at the sound of her dreamlike, ethereal music.

Have a listen on her SoundCloud www.soundcloud.com/ and official website http://aaronofficialuk.bandcamp.com/releases

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

FAULT reviews The Great Gatsby film soundtrack

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Baz Luhrmann’s take on The Great Gatsby is showing in theaters these days, and as any Luhrmann film, the music plays an important part. With Jay-Z credited as an executive producer, the soundtrack aims to mix the jazz sound of the 20s with contemporary music, featuring artist such as Jay-Z himself, Kanye West, Florence + The Machine, The Bryan Ferry Orchestra, Beyoncé, Lana Del Rey, The xx, Jack White and many more!

Say what you want about the film, but the soundtrack is an impressive compilation of songs from many of our most exciting artists today. Have a listen to a couple of the songs below, and buy the whole album on iTunes!

‘The Great Gatsby’ on the Web:

Official Site

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Twitter

YouTube

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Dark Horses: New Single

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Dark Horses – featured in FAULT Issue 3 –  have announced a double A-side single release.  The single features ‘Boxing Day’ and ‘Traps’, two songs taken from their debut album ‘Black Music’. The double A-side single will be released on the 11th February and is followed by UK tour dates set to be announced this week.

2012 saw a lot of hype around female-fronted bands such as The XX, The Kills and Beach House with both The Joy Formidable and Yeah Yeah Yeahs waiting in the wings with a new album.  Dark Horses set themselves apart, not only due to the heavy input of cult imagery, dark art and performance which the band incorporates into every aspect of what they do, but also with their cathartic, ethereal tracks.

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‘Black Music’ is Dark Horses’ debut album and the two songs featuring on the double A-side single are highly polished, clearly showing the input of producer Death in Vegas’ Richard Fearless. ‘Traps’, produced with soft vocal and guitar effects, exposes Lisa Elle’s atmospheric and haunting lyrics. This slower guitar and drum-led track is a subtle contrast to ‘Boxing Day’ which leads in with simple and repetitive synth, creating an undercurrent which drives the song, only broken by the chorus which furthers the song’s intense atmosphere.

The band has previously toured with Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Tame Impala and was hand-picked to support both Sigur Rós and Beck. This year is set to be just as eventful for Dark Horses with rumoured Stone Roses supports and Mercury Prize nominations.

Dark Horses are a melancholic yet undeniably refreshing change in current music. The double A-side single is a great introduction to both the band and its manifesto and will no doubt leave you aching to buy their debut LP ‘Black Music’.

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PHOTOGRAPHY BY ALI TOLLERVEY
Words by Rebecca Hopkins