ARTIST NAME: Fossway
SONG TITLE: No Heart in the Heart of the City
RELEASE DATE: 23/03/2019
GENRE: Alternative Rock
Assembled from Newcastle Upon Tyne, Fossway are the roaring rock quartet comprised of Daniel Mason (Vocals and Guitar), Harry Lowery (Drums), Jacob Herrington (Guitar and Backing Vocals), and John Lennox (Bass and Backing Vocals).
Fossway began in 2018 with a powerful start that saw Fossway release their debut single, ‘Parasite’, with a professional music video.
The four-piece have been building a respectable reputation around their home city of Newcastle by playing sold-out headline shows at The Cluny, O2 Academy Newcastle, and Wylam Brewery.
Building on this burst into the scene, Fossway then released their studio-recorded single, ‘Mannequin’ that exceeded its expectations.
The band signed an artist development deal with Pillar Artists which enabled Fossway to embark on their first UK tour playing Leeds, Sheffield, York, and Dunfermline to name a few.
‘No Heart in the Heart of the City’ is the latest single to be released by Newcastle alternative rock quartet Fossway and combines high-energy musicianship with contemporary lyricism to prove what they have in their locker.
‘While I get the comparisons with famous British acts like Radiohead -the complexity- and Muse -the catchiness-, Fossway are en route to create their very own style, that defies comparison’ – New York GlamGlare Magazine.
Tell us how you build up the tune for this song.
The syncopated drum and bass rhythms bounce off the eerie guitar and vocal melodies as together they burst into the chorus where catchy and distorted guitar licks meet punchy drum and bass stabs.
Tell us the best means of becoming a famous artist and selling more records.
As a band, our philosophy with fame and fortune is: we enjoy the ride touring the country and playing our music live to people.
If we get bigger than that then great, if not, we can look back and say at least we tried and had a great time as four best friends doing what we love.
Tell us how fans are reacting to your music.
It is hard to channel our sound into one genre, although a fan did label us ‘remastered seventies’, but the energy in our songs is what is resonating with fans.
We are not a band writing simple music about love or summer, we address important issues through complex musicianship.
Explain how to deal with fear on stage.
We rarely ‘fear’ playing live. Of course, if it is an important show we feel the adrenaline and nerves more than ever, but in general we stick to our two-beer rule and spend time together getting excited. Our code with every gig is that if there are 10 or 10,000 people out there tonight, we will play the best show of our lives.
Tell us your point of view on the quality of production of today’s songs to old songs and point out what you think has changed.
The recording has moved from tape to digital even before our lifetimes.
Nowadays, a recording is much easier and straightforward, but this strength is also a weakness.
In the days of Led Zepplin, Pink Floyd, and The Beatles, there was no space for mistakes, but now anyone can be made to sound good.
Tell us any interesting experience in your music career that is significant.
Our being and becoming are quite interesting as we are four completely different people who came together by chance.
For example, our guitarist Jacob was the first person I (Harry, drums) met at university.
It was a case of ‘hey, do you like music’, ‘yeah, I play guitar’ ‘sound, we need a guitarist’ and that was that.
Tell us how you come across the lyrics of this song.
Three of us study English at university so lyrics are fairly accessible. We’ll share poems or ideas and then work on them together to make them fit the music.
We are quite politically charged as demonstrated in ‘Parasite’ and we seem to be observant on societal matters as shown in ‘Mannequin.’
Tell us your best means of expressing yourself.
The energy of our songs allows us to truly vent and project emotion and passion onto each other when playing live.
Tell us your opinion on using music to deliberate on issues affecting people like corruption, immoralities, politics, and religion.
As an upcoming band, we don’t have the biggest platform to voice our politics or observations on society, and not many bigger bands seem to be doing so.
Hopefully, the themes and topics of our songs will be a factor that increases our fan base as we aim to promote these ideas.
Discuss how you plan to create a piece of timeless music that your fans can cherish forever.
As a band, we have roots coming from all corners of the history of music. From rock to classical to jazz, in our songs, you can hear our influences play out. For example, ‘Parasite’ is a rock-tango and ‘Mannequin’ is very punky, we all desire to continue to develop our sound through time and equipment.
List the names of individuals you can point out as legends and state your reasons.
John Lennon – one of the greatest songwriters to live and change music forever.
Kurt Cobain – a prime example of a person using negativity as a catalyst to express themselves.
Ludwig Van Beethoven – a true master of music.
Thom Yorke – one of the greatest innovators of music.
Tell us your viewpoint on discriminating.
In an era where there are many prevalent issues, such as racism, homophobia, etc., it is important to remember we are all human beings. God or no God, we will leave this earth as clueless as we came, we can only be nice to one another in the short time we are lucky enough to have here.
Tell us your favorite books and state your reason.
Speaking for the other members, I know John our bassist loves ‘1984’ by George Orwell and our rhythm guitarist Jacob likes ‘Crime and Punishment’ by Fyodor Dostoevsky. I prefer poetry myself, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Percy Shelley inspire me in their works, I am a particular fan of Romanticism and the Gothic and I would say my favorite poem is ‘Kubla Khan’ because I love how Coleridge illustrates a fallen paradise in reference to dreams, reality and his opium addiction.
Tell us what triggers your creativity.
Anything from a political issue to an enjoyable experience will trigger our creativity.
Tell us how you generate musical ideas for your composition.
Daniel, the lead guitarist, is our primary songwriter. Most times, he will have a riff or an idea which we all pick a part and add to before he creates a home demo of the track. We then play about with it in rehearsal for a few hours until we feel it has been developed enough.
Tell us your greatest song and state the reason.
Our newest single ‘No Heart in the Heart of the City’ is our greatest song yet.
Musically, it is our most complex and ambitious with its syncopation and guitar solos.
Vocally, it is probably our most interesting with the falsetto melodies – I think Dan is beginning to find his place and character as a frontman now.
And above all, it is the most fun to play and listen to as it takes a few listens to actually understand and once you have a grip on it, it doesn’t seem to get boring.
Tell us how you compose your song.
Dan is the primary songwriter and songs are then developed from initial ideas.
Elaborate on the song.
The song targets our thoughts and observations on the music industry and the government.
Although there is an extreme difference, there are parallels between upcoming bands and migrants.
Those at the top of the food chain or in the city are really not compassionate towards those from the outside, and this leaves us with the questions ‘well where do we go?’ or ‘where is our place?’
The track engages with our love of music with the struggle, in order to keep doing what we love.
Elaborate on your artist’s name.
When first recording an EP (unreleased), we were a nameless band. Pushed for time, we had to decide on a name quickly. The studio was in our home city near a road called ‘The Fossway’. It was a name that looked and sounded unique but still merited some sort of connection to us. Originally, we took the name as ‘Fosseway’ but due to very varied pronunciations of the word we dropped the ‘e’.
We spent months searching through other very questionable names until after a show at the O2 when we stood outside the venue with a post-gig buzz and we kind of looked at each other and all knew to just stick with Fossway and to drop the ‘e’.
From then on it stuck and we’ve grown into the name. We now write songs that you can listen to and say ‘yeah, that’s a Fossway tune.’
Most bands often undergo deadening searches for ‘the name’ with it needing to have meaning or significance; our name came from a mutual understanding and agreement.
If you really want to look into it, ‘Fossway’ is a real road but also a metaphor for our journey together.