Still fresh after all these years, electro-pop band Fenech-Soler is currently riding a wave of success for their newest record, Zilla. Like any long-running or collaborative band, there is a lot of history to their name, including a short (and successful!) battle with cancer, lineup changes that saw the band lose its namesake member, and an undying love for danceable pop music. We got the chance to speak to the band about the new album, tour, and the state of the music industry as it is; read the interview below!
Fenech-Soler is headed to the States for a spring tour, and Thrillcall is giving away tickets! Browse the full list of tour dates and also find links to giveaways below.
Win tickets to Fenech-Soler’s US tour! See full list of dates below.
Thrillcall: Your new album, Zilla, is a diverse and fun electropop record! In interviews, you’ve said that the title became its own feeling on the record. For those that haven’t heard your new LP, how would you describe the ‘Zilla’ sound?
Fenech-Soler: ZILLA is how Ross and I see pop music, inspired by late 70’s early 80’s soul music along side our own experimentation with synthesizers. Somewhere between these two influences we like to think our music exists but that’s just our take on it as the creators. Subjectively the listener could hear something completely different.
TC: You began conceiving Zilla after your tour for your last album, Rituals. Are you excited to hit the road again or do you prefer writing and working in the studio?
FS: We love touring our music. It’s the like the prize at the end of the record making process. After being cooped up in a studio we revel at the chance to create a new live show and then take it on the road. The songs then take on a life of their own at festivals and in clubs. We started this band inspired by watching live bands rather than being fascinated with how you record music so teaching ourselves to produce was a necessary task to be able to go and play shows. We couldn’t get booked unless we had an album out so we decided to buy a laptop and make one.
TC: Right after Zilla’s release in February, you travelled to the States for a quick two-date tour in New York and LA, your first shows to sell out in the US. Given that the band’s storied history, how does it feel to have finally reached this point?
FS: It feels brilliant. We’re having more fun than we’ve ever had and I think that’s reflecting in the music and the shows. Growing up in the UK and being in a band, the idea of even traveling to the US to play concerts is a far fetched concept let alone shows selling out and people connecting with your music. We’re of course over the moon and extremely humbled.
TC: The Up Coming wrote a great review of your live show, saying that the band’s “main objective is to create an intoxicating atmosphere.” Can fans expect to be intoxicated on your upcoming tour with Knox Hamilton?
FS: Ha! An intoxicating atmosphere has always been our mission. To be honest we’ve always just wanted to play dance music live and that can be a hard thing technically to do well. A glowing apple sign and two guys hunched over a laptop has never really connected with us so we wanted to create a more immersive show. There can be a unique euphoria with electronic music and it’s one of the reasons we feel in love with trying to capture that in Fenech-Soler’s sound. We have some big plans for these upcoming US shows as we’ve never had the chance to tour America properly. We’ve had time to really get to grips with this new album so we have some special re-edits, drums solos, pyros, fire breathing dancers… Well maybe not the last two.
TC: You both grew up in a musical family, your father even having toured with Dolly Parton many years ago. Do you guys have any insight on the current state of the industry or how we can improve it?
FS: Well it’s certainly changing drastically and you have to stay on top of it as an artist. We’re in a technological revolution where music is a free commodity and the rate that it’s consumed increases everyday. Everything is more instant, more bite size, more fluid. Ultimately it’s a hugely positive time for the music industry because, although there’s still a lot to get right in terms of artist repayment, streaming services have given opportunity to anyone that wants to release their music. A worldwide platform that didn’t exists before. The data that can be harnessed from this new global online community can directly impact how you operate as a band, where you tour, how you connect with you listeners etc. It’s an exciting time to be making music as long as you evolve with the industry.
4/26 – Washington, DC @ U Hall *
4/27 – Philadelphia, PA @ MilkBoy *
4/28 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom *
4/30 – Boston, MA @ Middle East *
5/2 – Albany, NY @ The Hollow *
5/3 – Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern *
5/4 – Detroit, MI @ Magic Bag *
5/5 – Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall *
5/9 – Little Rock, AR @ Stickyz Rock’N’Roll Chicken Shack
5/10 – Dallas, TX @ Dada *
5/11 – Austin, TX @ 3Ten – ACL Live *
5/15 – Greely, CO @ Moxi Theatre
5/16 – Denver, CO @ Lost Lake *
5/18 – Portland, OR @ Doug Fir *
5/20 – San Francisco, CA @ Brick & Mortar *
5/23 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Roxy *