We had the opportunity to interview Mark Fernyhough, he's an English Berlin/London based musician who creates fantastic alt-electronic music that is perfect to dance to. His first album 'Berlin Archives' dropped on September 25! If you like electronic music with a sprinkle of alt, you're going to love Fernyhough. Check out what he had to say below!
1. How did you come to pursue music and how long have you been at it?
"Growing up in England I always found the act of being creative a fundamental thing in my life whether making visual art or music. I guess I always felt like an outsider so started writing songs to communicate with people".
2. Could you walk us through your process of writing music?
"Mostly I use a stream of consciousness process through strumming chords or playing piano and formulating words and melodies through improvisation. It feels slightly supernatural how they develop beyond my own understanding and reveal their meanings later. Sometimes with a song such as ‘The Human Eye’ or ‘Socialites’ which tackle specific themes such as politics or history I use the classic method of writing the lyrics and then putting them to music later".
3. What artists have inspired you in your career?
"The English band Suede have been pretty instrumental, firstly for inspiring me in my teenage years listening to them on the radio and then more recently with me opening for them during three of their tours in Berlin. I’ve also been inspired by people such as David Bowie, Bryan Ferry, Tom Petty, Jean Luc Godard, Fox Mulder plus the art and fashion scenes of London and Berlin".
4. Do you have any favorite music gear (guitars, amps, effects pedals, keyboards, etc.) that you love to use? If so, what’s the story on them?
"I dig my Martin acoustic guitar. I needed something which sounded good live and in the studio so that worked terrifically. Generally though I’m not an equipment obsessive, the main drive is to write songs I believe in. The correct plectrum is essential though!"
5. Can you describe the vibe at your live shows? Also, what do you enjoy most about a venue when you do a show?
"It really depends on the show. Being a solo artist frees me up to experiment with my live setup and play with various musicians which change the dynamic completely. My upcoming show in Berlin at the Columbiahalle opening for Suede will feature me on vocals, Steven Horry on guitar and Agata Demon on synths. Sometimes I just play acoustically or with a cello player accompanying me. So live it can go from being quite explosive to pretty stripped back".
6. What is one thing that you want the public to know about your music?
"That I can write splendid songs but that I’m also keen to explore more esoteric avenues in expressing myself and creating art. It’s important to me to keep growing creatively. I’ve always taken my influences from various mediums outside music - art/film/fashion/literature".
7. Do you have any upcoming projects you would like fans to know about?
"My latest single ‘Sidewalks’ is out, and features a moody b-side ‘Favourite’. A limited edition physical-format-only album collection ‘Berlin Archives’ is also released this month. It collects ten of the tracks I’ve written and recorded in Berlin - all of my solo singles such as ‘Steal My Love’ and ‘Berlin’ plus never before released songs. Three other albums are also in the works - a solo album which like ‘Sidewalks’ takes a more electronic path, a guitar based solo album and a co-written record with producer Steven Horry. So I’m not as the Eagles suggested, taking it easy..."
FMI on Mark Fernyhough, visit his bandcamp page.