A yearning for summer has certainly settled in to be honest. While we all sit here, trying not to sleep in past 2pm and ensuring your boss that you are most definitely working from home, we can’t help but daydream for an easier time, a time of sitting in a beer garden, that first crisp cold £5.50 pint of summer (boycott Wetherspoon), playing football in the park with the gang, pretending you’re Emile Heskey when he’d just signed for Liverpool – you know the easier times. While everything is so uncertain, we can take some solace in the fact that once we’ve got through this, and we will, everyone is going to have one massive piss-up – one for the ages.
If anyone’s going to soundtrack that momentous occasion – I can’t think of many better than Fruit Tones. Melodically encompassing, fun time rock n roll from a few guys with a total ear for the good stuff. Raw, unfiltered and utterly frivolous – you can’t help but push yourself out of bed and do a little hustle to these guys – they’ll perk up your day instantly.
Today, they offer their Isolation Selection – a real esoteric mix of new wave, lo-fi pop and Scandinavian alternative. Dig deep dear friends.
These really are unprecedented times, how are you, how are you all feeling in all this?
T. Harrison – Not too bad, just taking it as it comes and trying to enjoy the free time, there’s not much point planning anything more than a day ahead and trying to keep safe at the moment.
T. Walmsley – I’m keeping it chill, keeping healthy and creatively cramming my mind so I don’t lose it. You can only take the positives from this whilst we wait for the world to fix itself, in the meantime we’ll carry on writing, drawing, reading etc…
C. Wood – I’m feeling OK, going a little stir crazy but in the grand scheme of things I’ve got a pretty sweet deal. Missing the other fruits though!
Can you quite comprehend the impact this is having on the music industry?
T.H – Not at all. It’s a massive blow especially to the DIY scene where live venues have lost 100% of their income and bands have had to cancel international tours they’d funded themselves with no financial safety net.
T.W – Music-wise I’m mainly worried about DIY spaces and small venues being able to survive this, people who make most of their income from touring or putting bands on too. Musicians are gonna make music, maybe through alternative methods at the moment, but without scenes that can gather, spaces you can feel welcome in and shows you can be inspired by what’s the point? Hopefully, with a bit of help, the structures of DIY music can come back stronger and more unified on the other side of this thing. We’ll all be itching for a party and hopefully we’ll still have the places to do it. DIY heads are pretty resilient though!
C – No matter what, music will prevail. It’s been proven through time. Don’t read what’s being said on social media…people are losing it on there.
I know at this stage it’s perhaps not the most important of things to consider, but do you think when all this is said and done, the foundations and the nature in which the industry runs will change??
T. H- I think there will be massive changes, but how they’ll filter down and affect our level it’s hard to tell. Most support for the music industry at all levels currently comes from within the industry itself, the DIY spirit that fuels us is out in full force with people buying merch to support bands that were hit hard and getting creative with things like putting together compilation tapes to try and keep venues afloat – that will always be the case among people in it purely for the love but there’s a point where that won’t be enough to stop things going under. I’m sure the mainstream side of things will be fine but it’s become even more apparent that something needs to be put in place to protect independent venues, artists, record shops, promoters etc. Whether anything actually happens I guess we’ll see.
C – I’m not sure I see the industry changing. I know very little about the industry to be honest. Maybe people who ordinarily wouldn’t hear underground music will get into a lot of stuff because they’re stuck in the gaff scouring the web all day. Again it’s made me realise how vital the mini-industries of DIY labels and spaces and promoters of any genre are to everything. They’re at the forefront of all the new and interesting stuff so they inform what comes after and gets bigger. They’re also totally vital to my sanity! So if anything changes I hope it’s that even more people start supporting them and that they can thrive in a post lockdown. world.
T.W – Everyone will come out of this and deliver some really interesting music, art and film. I’m keeping my optimism. Creativity never disappears, it only thrives man.
How has your work been affected personally by this?
T.W – Quite considerably, but working in the creative fields there’s always ways around this.
T.H – We don’t make any money off music really so nothing’s changed on that front. We’re pretty lucky that we’d planned a couple of months off from touring to work on finishing the next album so we only had to cancel a handful of shows and didn’t lose too much. I work as a chef too so everything’s cancelled for me until this is over.
C – It wasn’t at first and I sometimes thought it was a bit of a drag having to schlep gear out to the practice room in the cold and the rain. Now I can’t think of anything I’d rather do more. Apart from playing a show! I miss that so much. I can’t think about playing shows or draught pints right now hahah
Talk about your playlist for us, what does it represent for you?
T.W- It’s about feeling good and sending that energy into your ear so your brain wakes up and wants to do something. Songs that have come into the world that sure make you wanna bust a move.
T.H- I picked ‘Life During Wartime’ and ‘Seven Day Weekend’ because life feels like a combo of those two at the moment. ‘Sleepwalk’ because I’m learning lapsteel during the lock-in and that haunting sound is what made me want to learn it. ‘Dirty Hands’ because Black Lips are one of the bands that influenced the start of Fruit Tones and that song should surely be No.1 right now!
C- I picked a Radio Dept tune because I always pick a Radio Dept tune. That one specifically for the moment because I love the production, it’s like you’re in the practice room with them and it’s so warm it’s hot! I’m messing about recording with a tape machine in my flat at the moment and it’s sounding very lofi.
‘I gotta get drunk’ by Willie Nelson because the lyrics get it spot on. The tune is so simple and fun but hits the nail on the head. Also I really want to go to the pub.
‘Lovely Room’ by Papa M because I’m stuck in the flat but I do quite like my flat and because I started playing old CDs for the first time in ages and Six was one I pulled out. Also the solo rips. When it gets round to the really high bit my head goes all tingly.
Terry – ‘The Whip’ just because it’s catchy as hell and it’s the back of my mind 24/7.