Fenech Soler Interview.

This year has been epic for the dance-pop foursome, with a new album, an impressive UK tour and gigs supporting Kissy Sell Out under their belts. They collaborated on the Groove Armada track Paper Lies and they’ve done a mini mix for Annie Mac. Plain and Simple caught up with Dan from the band to find out more about a momentous 2010.

You’ve got a pretty unusual name, where did this come from?

The name is Maltese and is taken from my full name, which is Daniel Francis Fenech-Soler Trzebiatowski.  We wanted a name that didn’t particularly affiliate us with a particular genre or style and something where the music would define it. Apart from the pronunciation issues I think it works.

Your music is ‘pop meets dance meets indie’, what are your influences?

We all listen to a bunch of different genre’s of music which is why the album features elements of pop, dance and indie. Artists such as Daft Punk, The Chemical Brothers and Soulwax are artists who really got me into dance music.

You’ve been playing an epic 30 date UK tour throughout October and into Nov, how is it being on such an intensive schedule?

It’s great being on tour and finally getting the opportunity to play the tracks from the album and see how people react to them. It’s pretty intense doing the number of dates we’re doing – I think we have 7 days off in the whole 6 and half weeks that we’re touring so there are moments of cabin fever that you have to deal with but it’s cool. To be honest playing live is one of the best parts about being in a band for me, I don’t mind feeling a bit run down. 

You’ve also played a few shows in New York this year, how does the US scene differ from the UK?

New York was a really positive experience and a good way to break up the tour.  I think the scene out there is pretty similar in a lot of ways to over here in terms of what people are listening too etc.  Obviously Hip Hop is still as huge as it’s ever been but bands like Two Door Cinema Club are selling 1000 cap venues out there so UK new music is doing well. Our shows went really well so we came back feeling buzzed up about the US.

The debut album was released earlier this year, was this a labour of love in making?

It was a labour of love though at some points that was questionable. At the time we were recording it in Andy’s studio (his bedroom in Stibbington) I was still working a full time job that was a 3 hour commute a day  – so I would be going to work then just working on the album till the early hours before waking up to go to work again! Now the albums out and it all came good, looking back I did enjoying the gruelling regime.

You’re on the B-unique label, home to heavy weights like Primal Scream and Kaiser Cheifs, how have things changed for you since being signed?

Being signed has meant that we can finally get our record out there and do a tour like we’re doing now, it also gives us the opportunity to have creative idea’s and actually get to explore them as we have some finances now. On this tour we were able to take Lights out with us and we couldn’t do things like that with out being signed. Things don’t really get easier but harder if anything… in a positive way though. We’re working pretty much every day at the moment but we’re all happy because it’s all what we love doing and what we’ve worked towards for so long.

I understand most of the album was self-produced, how do you intend to keep this sound now you’re hitting the big time?

I think the writing process will always remain in the home studios though we might work with other producers in the future. This album was actually completely produced by Andy in his studio and it’s cool knowing we manage to put out and album being completely self-contained between the four of us. We are finally getting back to the studio to starting bashing out some new idea’s at the end of the tour so looking forward to that.

You were nominated as the next big thing at this years Q award, did this make you feel like proper pop stars?

I don’t think any of us feel like that – Being nominated was amazing, it’s great to think that what we are doing is being recognised on that kind of level and that people are getting it. Things are going well and we all feel good at where we are but there’s a lot of hard work to do in order to get to where we really want to be – hopefully we can win some in the future.

It was a slightly surreal experience with the whole red carpet thing. Our table was next to Kasabian’s and the room was full of music legends like Paul McCartney and Take That picked up an award, my girl friend loves those guys. I did come aware being completely inspired by the whole experience and just eager to get on with our own thing.

You’ve also supported the Kissy Sell-out tour this year, how did that go?

The dates will Kissy were great. Our set lends itself quite well to do in a club environment so it went really well. It’s always good to play in front of a different crowd of people and it also keeps the tour varied and more interesting. Sheffield ‘The Plug’ was pretty cool, it was the second time we played that venue and the crowd were mental, was good fun.

The tour is coming to an end soon, have we still got a chance to catch you live this year?

The tour finishes on the 10th of November at London’s Heaven, which is going to be a one big party – time to meet up with friends and family I haven’t seen for the past 7 weeks including my girl friend. She moved us both into our new flat whilst I was away so I need to take her out when we get back!  We are playing a few shows after the tour, we are supporting White Lies on the 16 of Nov in Edinburgh and we are playing a show with Kelis in December. We will have more dates to announce shortly.

You’re most likely going to want to hibernate after the mammoth tour finishes, but what else have you got planned?

I don’t think we have any time for rest unfortunately the ‘to do list’ is endless. After the tour we have a few shows taking us into December and then we are going to get back into the studio and do some writing. Our new single Demons is coming out at the end of Jan so we are building up to that, we are going to Copenhagen straight after the tour to shoot for that. We’re also off to Austria in Feb for a few weeks to at the Good Vibrations festival. It’s the first time we’ve gone out there so I’m really excited.

Fenech Soler’s self-titled debut Album is out now.

For more information and for the rest of the tour dates visit: http://www.fenechsoler.co.uk/



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