Dip Versus Future Of The Left

Questions were asked and duly answered. This is what was said when I spoke, through the medium of email, to Andrew Falkous of Future Of The Left.

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Dip Versus Future Of The Left
An interview.

Music doesn’t come more provocative than Future Of The Left. Taking on the world with a dangerous two-step of barbed lyrics and jarring rock, the welsh-based four-piece exist outside the realms of fear. Heroic and unwavering in the face of adversity, the band faces daily struggles to exist. Are they the promised ones, fabled to revolutionise the industry and save music once and for all? Well, let’s focus on the battle for album four first.

Despite a history of transparency, plans for their fourth studio album, How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident, were met with an electrifying mix of surprise and intrigue. Through a PledgeMusic campaign, which gives fans the chance to fund projects, promises were made for an EP, Love Songs For Our Husbands, in July alongside an album, pencilled in for an October release.

Even with the usual shield of disarming humour, there was a sense that the once guarded band was exposed. The distance had been breached; Future Of The Left needed your support.

An uneasy atmosphere surrounded the campaign. Although fiercely proud of their work, Future Of The Left don’t do self promotion; the album reviews and merchandise sales that fuel most artists contact with the outside world go largely ignored by the band. Describing a band as ‘in it for the music’ has become industry speak for ‘music first, hard sell you tote bags later’ but Future Of The Left aren’t in it for anything else. The worst thing about being in a band is “The finances”. The best? Almost everything.”  The music comes first, last and everywhere between.

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Speaking to Andrew Falkous about the new record, it becomes easy to see exactly why the Future Of The Left campaign was met with such a buoyant reception.  “We set the target at the level we’d need to make and manufacture the album in a realistic way. I think it’s important to not be (a) greedy or (b) seen to be greedy. I would hope people appreciate that.”

Appreciate that, they did. Despite “a slight worry the band’s resolve was never put to the test; the campaign reached its target in only five hours. The decision to break away from existing labels and go it alone may have been a risky move but “It was the right thing to do on every available level”.

Despite a successful foray into this brave new reimagining, Andrew Falkous is still hedging his bets about its long-term viability. “I can’t see into the future at all. It’s just the right thing for us, right at this moment.”

Even the band “have no idea” what to expect from their new album. Although written, and influenced by “the usual stuff”, it threatens to grow with natural, unruly charm. We, the pledgers, sit with sweaty palms. The futile father in the waiting room.

With 2012’s ‘The Plot Against Common Sense’ winning the Welsh Music Prize and this album already backed by over one thousand people, pressure would be an understandable accomplice in the recording process. “Not at all. It’s nice that there’s some faith out there but it doesn’t add to any pressure, real of imagined.”

What is known is that this album will undoubtedly swagger with all those qualities that make Future Of The Left such a unique and exhilarating band. Promising “loud rock music” that “sounds like us, an amalgam of our personalities and the way we strike the things in our hands” Future Of The Left are as defiant as ever.

With a grand scheme that reads “no plan. Rock Music. Only rock music. As much as possible within the realms of reality and sanity” and a niggling desire to change the music industry, -I’d make it about music-. It seems that despite the seemingly considered angle, Future Of The Left are as rugged as the loud rock music they create.

It would be all too easy to imagine Andrew Falkous, along with Julia Ruzica, Jimmy Watkins and Jack Egglestone, sat in the shadows writing their music. Carefully drawing up a list of targets: conspiring, questioning, and cackling with pantomime genius. All too easy, but completely wide of the mark. Songs come together “in different ways. Some I’ll write, some are just fucking around in the rehearsal room and occasionally one or just thrown together as a joke. Whatever works.”

Honesty and a deep-seated love for the music; you’ll be hard-pushed to find a band driven by as little as Future Of The Left, yet who deserve so much. The tongues, darting from razor sharp to firmly in cheek, helps drive a provocative allure that’s made FOTL the most consistently exciting band around. Constantly evolving as artists and within the bloated beast of the music industry, they might not be the revolution but they’re setting a comfortable pace. Future Of The Left aren’t the saviours of music. They haven’t got the time. They’ve got music to make.

The PledgeMusic campaign for Future Of The Left can be found here.

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~ by justdip on 20/06/2013.

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