Le fomo – Interview
Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
LF: We call our sound ‘electro thrash pop’ and ‘gender expanse wave.’ Swallow Me Whole (our upcoming album) is a bit of a genre journey– it starts with a disco dance number (NOTDF) and rolls into experimental electro pop and then into our final guttural rock bit, Hot Whiskey.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
LF: We started playing music together in a different project prior to Le Fomo about ten years ago when we both first got to the Bay Area. We dated on and off for a couple of years then. We started playing together as Le Fomo after our romantic relationship ended and we reconnected as friends, years later. Since playing together as Le Fomo, we’ve gone on a couple of short West Coast tours and have played a bunch of shows around the Bay Area before spending the last year focused on producing and now releasing our first full length studio-produced album on AnalogueTrash.
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
LF: La Femme, Le Tigre, The Kills, Sleater-Kinney, Electrelane, Talking Heads, Peaches, The Gossip, The Cure, Prince, Janelle Monae, Leikeli47, PJ Harvey, Screaming Females, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, among others. Non-musical influences include Broad City, Insecure, all things Jordan Peele, Tiffany Haddish, Schitt’s Creek, the sound of BART, crushing existential despair, weed.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
LF: Keep creating music and art that we love and that our fans love and use our platform to help support black and brown lives and our broader LGTBQ community.
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
LF: Our songs, in order on the album, are about: a nip seeking liberation (NOTDF), fighting your internal demons/patterns (WWNIC), wanting to completely heal the person you’re obsessively in love with (SMW), navigating emotional uncertainty and intimacy (Tiny Anchor), watching yourself follow your heart along a certain path toward obliteration (Heedless Velvet), finding a connection with another person so strong you feel as though it transcends all of the space time continuums (Corkscrew Hourglass), the mantis shrimp lyfe (Parabolic Rinpoche), spooning each other (Spoon Revolt), and a guttural, blistery break up song chock full of the anger that you have probably felt at least once in your life that moment you finally see how someone has hurt you– Hot Whiskey.
Ess takes the lead on songwriting, but it’s different for each song and it’s changed over time, too. We tend to have two approaches — a lot of our songs start as jam sessions and then we pull out the good bits and shape them, with Ess largely guiding the structure into place. For more of the newer songs, Ess has done more of the initial work on their own and then Kai will come in and plug in guitar and/or drums a little later in the process as described above.
Ess writes a lot of the lyrics, but we also have a collaborative lyric writing process where we both brainstorm out loud or in a doc together or we take a block of Ess’s writing and we wordsmith it until we find those places where the meaning and the shape of the words click just right.
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
LF: Social media – we use Instagram for most of our activity but also Facebook (unfortunately), and lately have jumped on Tiktok and Twitter.
Event listings used to also be helpful, and of course PR at the venue itself and spreading the word to friends and fans directly.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
LF: People still want to hold music in their hands, to take a piece of the band with them, so vinyl and tapes continue to be relevant. But in practice, people are listening to music mostly through streaming services and Bandcamp so we try to be adaptable to all of it with the goal of making our music as accessible as we can.
At the same time, musicians should be compensated well for our creative work, especially right now. Artists produce content that makes life meaningful for people. We need to do a better job of making sure we’re taking good $$ care of our artists.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
LF: Hmmmm. Maybe Psycho Killer. Love that bass line and David Byrne’s vocals. We used to cover it at our shows, always fun to sing with an audience. Or Maps by Yeah Yeah Yeahs– there are so few elements in the song, but they come together to make a really interesting and complex sound. Each instrument on its own is doing something a little unexpected, but not jarringly so.
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
LF: Thank you for asking #1 is raisins (gold ones are ok).
PD: What is your proudest moment in music?
LF: Seeing all the love for NOTDF continue on and on has been so incredible!! And getting a Billboard mention for Tiny Anchor the other day was pretty nice 😉 Tiny Anchor is the second single off of our album, and it’ll be available on AnalogueTrash in Europe on August 21st.
PD: So what are you working on at the moment?
LF: Dreaming up the next music video for Swallow Me Whole, the title track off our full album. Our full album will be released on AnalogueTrash (Europe) and Club Queen Records (North America) on September 25th.
PD: What music have you available online and where can we buy it from?
LF: Our upcoming album is available for preorder on Bandcamp, and you can get the first two singles on Bandcamp right now. /
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