Interview: Firesites

Newcastle-based artist, Firesites, creates dark Electronic-Pop music in the north east of England and gave us the opportunity to discuss his debut album “The Sun“.

Your new album, “The Sun”, has just been released. What themes are there in the songs included on the album? What inspired the songs?
Lyrically, the album includes themes of confinement, escapism and belonging. It tells a story about two characters in a dystopian world, trying to escape the sanctuary they’ve been born into. I’m a bit obsessed with post-apocalyptic stuff, so a lot of the ideas were very much inspired by the likes of 28 Days Later and Fallout 3! I love how these stories portray what are really emotional states, like isolation and confinement, in such a physical and visual way. And that’s what I wanted to do with ‘The Sun‘.

If you had to describe your sound, how would you do so? Furthermore, what artists (or other sources) do you cite as influences?
That’s a tricky one! There’s quite a wide range of styles on the album. It varies from indie synth-pop, to heavy prog rock, to glitchy electronic music. I’d like to think it has a fairly unique sound in that sense, but I’d say The Sun was influenced by artists such as Radiohead, twenty one pilots and EDEN to name a few. Since writing the album, though, I’ve definitely broadened my horizons in terms of influences, recently getting into some new wave, dream pop, post-rock and psychedelic music – a lot of hip hop too!

What have been your music highlights so far? And what is on your bucket list that you’d want to achieve?
Honestly, just having released my first album and hearing that people are actually enjoying it, and choosing to listen to it, has been a massive highlight. It’s been such a long time in the making and it got to that point where I was questioning whether it was any good, and if it was even worth putting out anymore, but the response has been so rewarding and made it so worthwhile. I’ve never felt more excited to make more music.
I love performing on stage so much, it’s a real shame we haven’t had the chance to gig much of the new set, since Covid and all. So it’s not really a bucket list item, but I just wanna gig! I could probably set myself some crazy goals – I’m sure Glastonbury’s very nice – but I’m really content with just continuing writing, recording, performing, and getting better at it.

If you could be the main support for any living artist, who would that be for and why?
Another tough one! I might have to go with Queens of the Stone Age for this though, not just because they’re amazing and sound incredible, but Josh Homme clearly has a pretty extensive network of musicians around him and I’d be keen to get in on that! I went to their Finsbury Park day-festival in 2018 with my brother and the line-up was insane: Run The Jewels, The Hives, Iggy Pop…

What artists have you been listening to? Additionally, who should others be listening to?
I’ve been listening to a lot this year! Some recent favourites are Men I Trust, Homeshake, MF Doom, Deerhunter, Phoebe Bridgers, Working Men’s Club, Duster Tyler the Creator, Fiona Apple… Some lesser known artists I highly recommend are Moon By Moon and Newcastle’s own SQUARMS.

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