INTERVIEW: Fossway | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Presently, an internet search for ‘Fossway’ returns a rather unassuming A-road running through Walkergate. Sporting the typical collection of takeaways and corner shops, one would not instinctively associate it with a new and very exciting rock group gaining momentum in the Newcastle area, however Fossway are determined to change that. “It’s got a nice ring to it,” the quartet told me, during a somewhat intoxicated chat at The Hancock. “We were recording our first EP in the studio not far from the road and releasing it online, but didn’t have a name…well we did, but it was crap.”

All still university students, drummer Harry Lowery, singer/guitarist Daniel Mason and bassist John Lennox have played together in various incarnations since school. Guitarist and out of towner Jacob Herrington proved the missing piece of the puzzle. “Harry was the first person I met at uni – we’re on the same course [English at Newcastle University] – at one point he mentioned ‘I’m in a band and we need a guitarist’, and I was like ‘you’ll never guess what: I’m fucking ace at guitar!’”

So far, Fossway have drawn comparisons to the likes of Muse and Radiohead, which doesn’t always do their remarkably fresh take on indie rock justice. They seemed to agree: “We’ve even had someone say we sound like The Kooks! Even we sometimes try to pin down what we sound like, but we have so many influences – from punk, to indie, to progressive rock, classical, metal – but it seems to all fit together really well.” An eclectic mix no doubt, and one that appears to stem from their individual musical personalities coming together in beautiful harmony. “It’s a proper democracy; Dan is probably the main songwriter, he brings the bare bones then we really flesh it out together when we rehearse it live.”

The band’s most recent singles, the punk-infused Parasite and Mannequin, an intense self-described “rock tango” that saw them sign with Pillar Artists, lead to tour dates across the UK. Their new release, No Heart In The Heart Of The City, sees them up the prog influence in their sound. “Stylistically it’s in the same vein as Mannequin, but more complex, with really technical sections that the musicians will appreciate, but also such a driving, anthemic chorus.” All of which I can concur; the track takes a raw and rock-driven approach, climaxing with a dizzying guitar solo over wildly shifting time signatures. “My fingers nearly fall off every time I play it,” admits Jacob.

There’s definitely a tangible sense of anticipation stemming from the quartet right now, who seem determined to get their music heard far and wide. “We’re fairly well coordinated; the next step is really to establish ourselves in some new cities, and then major festivals after that. We want to push ourselves as much as we can to get big but if we don’t, we can look back and say we had a great time – there’s not any substance that gets you a buzz like playing live on a stage!”

Fossway launch their new single at Head of Steam, Newcastle on Saturday 23rd March.


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