Monday, 21 March 2011

Music: Mousike: Music for the Muses not the Masses

What a week. It was so heavy it's left me run down with a cold. So what better to do in a physical down-time than blog??

Another track's been recorded. Tuesday last week saw us piling into the studio in Ashley, setting up and playing a song 9 times - or till I couldn't sing any more. No click. Just eyes closed and straight through (Augen zu und durch). No crazy effects. It sonically manifests everything we've grown to believe in: don't give a shit. After all the word music is derived from the Greek word 'mousike' meaning 'arts or sciences governed by the Muses'. Music for the muses.

It was incredible to finally take our hands off our eyes and realise that making music that appealed or was accessible to all, was completely ludicrous and left our tracks lacking any 'gravitas or rock majesty' (Tim Oliver, 2010). It was good to record a track in it's raw entirety with no overdubs, capturing a moment instead of hankering after perfection. Take it or leave it. It exists with or without you. It's not at all as indulgent as I'm making it seem. We haven't gone prog. We've just grown up a little I guess. It feels like we've moved our tent a little further out of the musician's camp and into the artist's camp and are hanging around enjoying the view waiting to be kicked out and sent back to where we belong.

The last track we recorded captures this turning point, the new-found confidence and comfort in our own sound. It's repetitive, it's simple and it's powerful. I enjoyed every single take and felt a sense of sadness once the final chord was struck. I probably could have played it all night. I love it.

I hope you do too. And if you don't. Can't win 'em all. And that's jusssst fiiine!

Come watch us on 26th March (Saturday) in Moles, Bath. Supporting The Milk - so probably a 10pm start. The new, freshly recorded tune will descend on fresh ears... maybe yours?

NiFe xx

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

2011 mantra: Ctrl+Alt+Del


The command in the title kinda sums up the start of 2011 in the life and times of Nicole Fermie. It's been an emotional couple of months - as the first few months of every new year usually are. But it's good to hit the restart button every now again. And we really have reset in many ways.

A few weeks ago we split up with our management company. I say 'split up' because it really did feel like a relationship split in many ways. Fermie got emotional - but most things make me emotional. Comes with the genes. Every emotion is lived out to the full. Nothing English about me that way at all. But someone's gotta keep Kleenex in business - and I sure did my bit that day. Everything in music is an emotional rollercoaster. Musicians - thousands of them out there running around with their hearts bleeding all over their sleeves. It's amazing people pay any money at all to see or hear us do our thing.

But we were moving in a different direction to our management company. Lets just leave it at that. After all, I'm out of Kleenexes and I dont think eye fluid and computer keyboards are a happy couple.

The reset button has also been pressed on the issue of using my name 'Nicole Fermie'. Over the last year and a half since Scott joined the band I've started to feel a little silly introducing myself as 'Nicole Fermie' when really - we're a band. It's not a solo thing anymore. The boys are part of the music, the vibe, the songwriting - everything! So saying 'Hi, we're Nicole Fermie' - was just silly. Also. Ever tried telling someone the name of your band in a loud club? Especially when that someone is also three JD and cokes ahead of you? Well - Nicole Fermie just doesn't get remembered that easily unless you stuff a gig poster in someone's pocket or force yourself into their hands using a pen and skin.

So. We've decided to go for a name change. First two letters of Nicole and the first two letters of Fermie spell.....NIFE!

Awesome. Four Letters. Pow.

So within the next few months we're gonna go global with this one. And you're going to be the only lucky sods who know what the hell's going on. Nice one for reading this blog.

So without management we've taken on a bit more control (Ctrl), changed a few things, like our name (Alt) and gotten rid of Nicole Fermie (Del) as a band name.

The record is great. I need to step away from it sometimes to enjoy it. I still have those days when I hear it and want to cry because I think it sounds shit, and other times when I have it on loop with a silly grin across my Indian face.

The live set and the record are practically one and the same - just as I like it. Everything is real and reproducible within our tight 3-piece outfit. Perfect time to release a record like this in the time of Tinie Tempah, Burke and JLS (who rip off the 'Sound of Music'- shameless! What would Julie say???). Or are we simply too loud and organic for these times? We're a guitar band. Surely those will never die?


We're playing all the new material on home soil on 26th March at Moles. Come down and witness the official name change. The band are practically getting married on the 26th. It's not me anymore. It's a band. And I'm thrilled to bits.

Much love and kleenexes.

I'm gonna tuck into some pancakes and listen to the Zombies and some Gainsbourg. Sun's out. Bring it!