East London’s Fever Dream manage the rare feat of sounding like all your favorite bands without parodying any of them.
Their inclusion in our Ones To Watch list was earned following a mesmerizing Lexington show which teetered on the edge of disjointed drone, yet maintained composure by transcending lo-fi shoegaze into an ethereal post-punk. Think The Fall’s bite, with Ride’s melody and the ingenuity of These New Puritans and the scope of Fever Dream’s abilities become apparent. Debut single This Waste oozes apocalyptic guitars yet remains hauntingly distant and subtle. It’s discerning noisy dream-pop for people with angular sensibilities.
They formed while Sarah Lippett (bass) and Cat Loye (drums) were on a drunken jaunt around America, then forcefully recruited Cat’s former Esiotrot band member Adey Fleet on guitar and vocals. In true indie spirit the three Brighton University friends started writing after returning from All Tomorrow's Parties in 2010, playing their first gig that Christmas.
We spoke to Adey to find out more.
What do Fever Dream sound like in a sentence?
Kittens eating cupcakes with broken glass centres.
Describe your musical philosophy to us.
To play songs loud enough so no one can hear you mess up, or you’re out of tune. And to rip off enough bands in each song that they almost end up sounding original.
Who are your influences music and non-music?
We all have different musical leanings but we’re collective fans of noisy 90s stuff like Pavement, Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine, and most of the Postcard back catalogue. I think we’d all agree that Philip K. Dick is a true hero, and Neil Buchanan inspired us to attend art school.
In what area of London are you based, and how has that area influenced Fever Dream’s music?
We’re dotted around various parts of east London, so we’re lucky to be amongst some fantastic bands and venues. It’s easy to get to gigs of friends’ bands, have them come to yours, and to record and practice in the same spaces. I wouldn’t say we’re part of a scene as most of the bands we hang out with are pretty different to us, but I think that’s healthy.
What’s your favorite London venue and why?
Of the venues we’ve played so far, The Lexington stands out – they have a mini-fridge with TWO types of beer backstage, and the whiskey selection is outstanding. The great sound helps too. We were big fans of Barden’s Boudoir before its untimely demise, and nothing seems to have filled its sweaty boots yet.
What’s the London gig circuit like for bands starting out?
We’ve had some fantastic gigs with great promoters like OddBox, Scared to Dance and HDIF, who’ve taken a chance on us and are genuinely interested in promoting new music. But you still have some gigs where you’re supporting a Kooks covers band and you have to guarantee you’ll bring 500 friends before you get a free beer.
If you could have yourself projected on any building in London, which would it be and why?
Something Brutalist like The Hayward Gallery or the Barbican, for that authentic Blade Runner feel.
What’s your favourite…
THE Monument - the climb is scary but the view makes it worthwhile.
…Tube line and why?
Sarah would probably say the DLR but I’m going for the Overground.
… Place to hang out?
If only for the beer, the Jolly Butchers in Stoke Newington.
… Area for food, China Town or Brick Lane?
Where would Fever Dream like to play if they could play anywhere in London?
The revolving restaurant at the top of the BT Tower would be fun. I think we could pull off playing some lounge jazz there if we had to.
How exciting is to be releasing your debut single?
Bed-wettingly so, everything seems to have come together quite nicely. It was recorded at the end of last year at the new Soup Studios, and we’re really proud of how it’s ended up sounding. It’s our first release so it’s kinda nerve-racking to see how it’s received, but the guys at Underused Records have been fantastic in promoting it.
What’s been Fever Dream’s career highlight?
Playing in a public toilet in Berlin to a bunch of punks - and a fake fish tank.
What are your future plans?
To play in more public conveniences, all around the World. We also have plans for a long-player on Underused in the works.