I Let Love
I Let Love is available via:
24th November, 2017
THE final days of the year are ticking down and…
with that, the chance to reflect on great talent primed for movement and success. I have been following Hero Fisher for a while and know what a promising artist she is. I will talk more about her but, having seen her live, wanted to chat about artists who have a rare and unique stage presence; how songs, blessed with an original concept, can stick in the mind; how early honours can propel and boost an artist; the ‘difficult second album’ and making the most of success; how things are shaping up in 2018; artists that move about and absorb different musical tastes – and why female artists are back in the mind. Hero Fisher is someone I have known about for a long time but got to see her live earlier in the year. I have been a fan and always gripped and fascinated by her work. On record; you hear the beautiful vocals and rich tones; the incredible musicianship and lyrics that go beyond the ordinary. It is on stage when the music jumps and really comes to life. I have seen her work and, with another musician (his name escapes me), created a layer of sound. Fisher would record a vocal and capture it on a machine; that vocal would then be repeated through the song – she could do the same with a guitar sound. Whilst in the midst of a set; she can layer her own voice and build a unique and mesmeric song. She has a great demeanour and manner that is rare to find in live performers – too many are quite awkward or do not interact with their crowd. Hero Fisher has cheekiness to her and is one of those rebellious pin-ups who is a strong and alluring proposition. You listen to her chat and there is modest and sweetness but she has an impressive tongue and banter that compels you to follow her live. I have seen her once - but know what a reputation she has.
I know this will continue into 2018 as she continues to promote her music. It is in front of other people you get the most affecting and sustained hit. Many are primed towards social media and streaming – because that is the way marketing and promotion goes – and forget about the importance of gigs. It is vital to balance the two and not put too much emphasis on digital forums. Hero Fisher has an impressive social media layout but elevates her music when she is on the stage. I have heard a lot of new acts who seem impressive online, and have attention to detail, but they come off quite limp and forgettable up-close. It is a shame to see but I am more likely to see an artist, and remain with them, when they put in a stellar show. After seeing Hero Fisher at The Finsbury; she is someone I am determined to remain with her and see her perform a couple of times next year. Her set is quite sparse and simple but it is the way she mutates and echoes that get the crowd stunned. The likeable and intriguing personality, coupled with the music, is a reason why Hero Fisher is among the most talked-about and incredible artists around. It is not only the incredible live gigs that stand her aside: her songwriting and original bent cannot be discounted. When listening to I Let Love, and diving into its lyrics, you are experiencing something new and strange; an artist who does not play by conventional rules; an extraordinary writer who has her feet on the ground but takes the listener somewhere unexpected. I shall come onto that topic soon but, before then, urge anyone who has not witnessed Hero Fisher on the stage to do so. She puts her heart and soul into the performance and, regardless of the size, can hook every crowd; keep them in her palm and control the room – making sure they go away talking about her for days to come!
I have mentioned how Fisher’s latest song is a great work that defies categorisation and simple analogies. I hear a lot of songs that talk about love and life but they are cliché and rarely transcend the ordinary. It can be annoying discovering the same type of music and unable to fall for music. I want to hear musicians who can bond the familiar with their own angles and agendas. I discover so many acts who have the potential to be good but, when you hear the song, it leaves you a little cold and jaded. There are new artists who are proving me wrong and doing something wonderful. They can talk about love and what we experience in everyday life and transform it. Hero Fisher’s latest track looks at contagion and jumping between people. By that; each verse is different but looks at the day in a life of various characters. It is a spirit that balks against quotidian life and the mundane grind. Hero Fisher takes the narrative of predictability and imbues her characters with a spirit and force – one that inspires the listener and, in doing so, gets them to rethink their choices. This is only one song from Fisher but, when listening to her back-catalogue; one hears this kind of endeavour and pioneering spirit. I am always impressed by songwriters who go beyond the commercial and easy and write something with genuine depth. Fisher is someone who sees life differently and does not have a predictable lifestyle. She goes through her day looking at the world with an artistic and creative way. You can argue whether the mainstream artists – who pen average love-songs and do not let their imagination run wild – are needed and whether there needs to be changes made. These acts have validity but, as they are in the spotlight of music, should we be reversing our structure and ensuring acts with intelligence and unique insight get their rewards? I feel acts like Hero Fisher have to fight a lot harder than those artists who take the easy route.
It is something that irritates me but I feel 2018 will see some changes come into play. I will talk about Fisher’s upcoming album but I am looking ahead and wondering whether music will redress its reliance on mainstream, commercial acts. The airwaves are filled with plastic, processed stars who have a little bit of talent but are buried in machinery and technology. The songs are tinny and empty whilst the lyrics hardly push towards the profound. The assumption is this is what people want to hear; the definition of what is seen as ‘popular’ and warranted. This music is often aimed at a narrow, young, audience and means we have a rather stagnated and stale scene. The charts do offer light relief and options but there are far too many Pop acts that get that undue promotion. Maybe it is never going to be the same as things were years ago: times where there was consistent quality and amazement in the upper leagues of music. Maybe streaming and the digital takeover means the emphasis is on image, popularity and accessible sounds: challenging music and appealing artists have to shout louder because of this. Maybe it is the hard work that gives an artist strength but, when considering someone like Hero Fisher, I worry she has to work too hard to get her name out there. I know she will shoulder the responsibilities of music with aplomb – her natural talent and songwriting power mean she will have a busy and productive 2018. Her songwriting is a good reason why we should remain with her. Listen to a song like I Let Love and you are instantly sucked into a new world and feel differently about things. Not many songs have the potency and prowess to do that – a reason to be excited about her album, Glue Moon.
The title alone gets you interested! It has a child-like innocence but, if said fast, sounds like ‘glooming’ (or ‘gloaming). The image and concept of a sticky moon is one that struck me. I wonder where the title comes from and whether there is metaphor and simile present. I would like to find out what symbolism goes into the title but, when listening to a cut like the one we have now; it is clear the record is going to be strong and impassioned. Delivery – her debut L.P. – was celebrated and showed what a strong and original songwriter she was. The album was brought out two years ago and has been getting great reviews and love. I have heard some of its material on the stage and can attest as to how powerful it is up-close. The upcoming album is going to be under the microscope because of the debut’s strength. Fisher strengths and talents go into that record; she made it her own and crafted an identity and wonder – I wonder how far the sophomore album will go. Glue Moon is going to be a stunning album and I am glad to see Hero Fisher pushing forward. So many artists I know are not recording new material or stop after one album. It can be disappointing seeing how music’s pressures and challenges get to people. Few of us can put ourselves in the position of a musician and realise how intense and challenging things are. Songs take a while to craft and it can be difficult sustaining a career. Hero Fisher knows all of this and is someone who is aware – even though she is a new artist – of the perils of that second album. Historically; that record is always seen as challenging and troubled: artists who create a fantastic debut have the pressure to repeat themselves and keep the fascination high. Acts like Oasis (who created a magnificent one-two in the 1990s) overcame that hurdle with confidence – not too many other can do so with ease. It is stressful following a great introduction but that is only because many people want more of the same.
PHOTO CREDIT: @sonyajasinskiphotography
The trouble with repeating yourself is the material, inevitably, will be weaker. All your best ideas have been used so, if you stay on the same course, it is more difficult coming up with something new. Some artists go the other way and completely depart from what they released before. The music loses identity and it can leave some confused and detached. The artists who are most successful take the second album as a chance to evaluate the strengths of the debut and what made it shine. They retain that and naturally assimilate influence from their present day. That can include new themes and sounds; a natural growth and maturity that can balance and blend with their early work. Hero Fisher laid down an impressive marker with Delivery and showed she was a songwriter with promise and skill. Glue Moon, even with I Let Love out, looks like it will be different and evolved. I can hear embers of her debut but there are new strands that come into play. Older songs like Sylvie have been based on a single figure and possessed a certain type of tones and flavour. Fisher’s new song is more ambitious and takes itself in another direction. The lyrics look at various characters and the central theme – overriding the mundane and shaking off demons – is a different one. I wonder whether the second album is defined less by friendships and personal challenges; more about broader themes – tackling them with a special eye and sharp pen. Fisher does not bore you with her music: each song reaches deep and brings something out of each listener. I know she will continue to craft songs for many years to come. Seeing how she has grown and developed is very exciting. She is someone who dedicates every morsel and molecule to music and what it can offer. Her career, even this far, has been filled with highlights and celebrated moments. She does not have wealth and privilege: her natural talent has got her where she is today.
PHOTO CREDIT: @eaglefarringdon
Look back at her C.V. and she has shared the stage with some incredible talent! She has collaborated with Alison Mosshart and Boy George in the Mark Ronson-scored baller, Carbon Life. She opened for Neil Young and The Rolling Stones at Glastonbury; she has been shortlisted for prizes and has won fans in Blur and The Horrors. Here is an artist who has a great reputation and that experience of the big stages. I have seen her in a modest setting but the exposure she has already had means her new music has that wider scope. She knows, soon enough, she’ll be playing Glastonbury and huge festivals – she wants to create material that can balance intimacy and widescreen, crowd-uniting jams. Her songwriting is inspired by great storytellers like Jeff Buckley but she has a fierce Rock side that makes one thing of Patti Smith. I am not sure whether I Let Love will be on the new album (one assumes it will) but I know, when the record is unleashed, many will be booking Fisher and lining her up for festivals. Few can deny she has achieved a lot over the last few years but I feel 2018 will be a very important one for her. She has that ammunition and history; there is more material out and, with that, more venues will come through. Sets can build older songs like Push the Boat Out and lace that with fresh cuts. Next year is already proving to be an interesting one. I am writing a piece (later today) that casts my mind to the albums and acts I am excited about. Among the acts I am excited about are Jack White and Billie Marten – two very different musicians bringing out new material. New music is looking rather bright and there will be so many fantastic albums released during the course of the year. Music is like an ecosystem that is always changing and growing. I am looking forward to seeing new species and lifeforms come into music and offer their sounds. I have mooted how Pop and Hip-Hop are going to be two genres changing and growing. Both have struggled to make much impression – Hip-Hop underrated and shunned; Pop rather generic – but the newer breed is pushing the genres in the right direction.
Hero Fisher is making moves towards the mainstream and looks set to get there quite quick. Not only has she absorbed and integrated various sounds into her music: the artists she has shared the stage with would have provided her with the impetus and desire to keep striving. Fisher is British-born but was raised in France. She resides over here but I know that movement would have fed into her music. Those who experience more of the world are, naturally, going to have a richer palette. Hero Fisher has a broad canvas and she brings a variety of sounds and sights into her music. Female artist are always in my mind and most of the requests I get are from men. It is disappointing to see so many men come forward but that is more to do with labels/P.R. companies. I have loved most of what has come my way and feel reluctant turning down someone good because of their gender. I am always looking for more female artists because there is something different about them – and music has enough sexism in it as it is. That is something that will be on my mind next year. Hero Fisher is an artist I have known about for a couple of years and I hope she gets the dues she deserves. All of her talent and ability shows she is up for the challenges and is one of the strongest performers around. I am excited seeing where she can go and just what she can produce next year. There are few who have had that background and are so consistent. All this bodes well and means many eyes will be trained her way as we creep into an exciting time for music.
PHOTO CREDIT: @saulwodak
There are scratched and precise guitar strings in the opening moments. Tribal drums come in and there is that building mood and energy. Although the composition remains quite light in the early stages – albeit, pressing and exciting – the heroine comes in and talks about the mundane and ultra-regular. We get a list of activities that include cleaning up the driveway and taking care of household chores. She goes through the workaday life and the office and commute; getting lunch and engaging in something rather boring. As we know the song relates to various characters and their day; there is the need to cast our mind away from Fisher and the various guises that are being represented. The heroine, that said, let love slip through her fingers and she has, perhaps, been too focused on work and music. I listen to the chorus and hear the emotion and revelation that comes through. The verses are delivered with such a speed and rush you know that is a reflection on the hectic nature of her life – and many others she watches around her. There is very little time to engage in relationships and concentrate on something more meaningful and pure. Perhaps the dedication and time needed to forge a relationship have put her off. Music is a big part of her life so it is understandable Fisher would let love slip by. Maybe it is more a reflection about a character and someone that has sacrificed a lot of her/his life for a career. I love how the chorus has a more relaxed and soothed tone. It calms the song down and ensures the core message is provided time and affection. That need to slow and let love come through is pressing in the mind. Fisher’s voice ably switches from scatted and hurried to a soulful and tender lullaby.
The next verse flies in and we see someone/Fisher sleeping with the lights on and falling sleep in front of the T.V.; walking through an empty carpark and struggling to stay awake. There is that contrast of accelerated day-to-day and the rather unspectacular ordinariness of life. People dozing and slumping; wondering where things have gone wrong – and why they have not dedicated more time to meaning and love. This comes right back in the next verse as, once more, that speedy delivery gives the song a fresh round of fire and kick. I have seen a lot of great comments and love afforded the song and there have been some more muted. We all have our opinions on music but there is nothing to fault at any stage of I Let Love. Even by the half-way mark; I realised it was one of Fisher’s strongest and a song that leaves its mark on the heart. It is a light and delicate song one moment; it transforms into something bolder – never getting too heavy and rushing away. Maybe people want something more swaggering and bold; some bigger strings and greater urgency. There are few that can deny the meaning in the music and how relevant the subject-matter is. I was hooked into the song and helpless to refuse the images and scents. I was following every scene and suggestion from Hero Fisher. Into the second verse; I was thinking about a different character and someone who has let love go by. There is that central mandate that suggests our everyday lives are getting in the way of human connection. How much do we actually achieve from work and pushing ourselves?! You can argue it is hard to detach from the rigmarole and demands of the day but, when it comes to it, there is that desire and importance of love.
Taking the lights down and dedicating time to love is an important balance and balm to the stress and rush of life. The percussion gets bigger as the song goes on. Fisher’s voice echoes and repeats; she builds layers and hovers in the background. It is an ethereal and graceful sound that washes over the skin and provides a tender kiss. One can imagine Fisher is the kind of woman who gives her all to music and her life – that need for something more is always at the back of her mind. I am impressed by the complexities and layers one discovers in the song. The beats have a nice patter and balance: able to add that heartbeat and force but never too intrusive. There are guitar strings that break through the mist and provide colour and sunlight. Fisher’s voice is the star that shines and illuminates the path. It is a stunning performance from a vocalist I feel is getting stronger by the release. I can hear new aspects coming through: there is a greater soothe and beauty; fresh tones and colours come out in the performance. Anyone who yearns for a grittier and more Patti Smith-esque songwriter cannot fault Fisher reflecting and speculating. She looks at the boring daily grind and how the spirit and revelation of greater meaning is what we need. Most of us are trapped in something rather mundane and predictable. Do we spend the time to actually inject substance and purpose into our lives? People get so caught up in work but, when you look at your week, how many interesting moments are there?! It is a typically solid and impressive offering from a young songwriter who feels the weight of the world on her shoulders but has a wisdom and intelligence few possess. Long may this success and consistency continue as we look to see how her 2018 pans out. Incredible stuff from the always-wonderful and challenging Hero Fisher.
I am not sure whether there are late gigs coming for Hero Fisher but she’ll want to get her new single out there. Many are excited about it already and it has been picking up heat and affection. The weather is bitter and sharp, for sure: Fisher’s latest gem is a hot and comforting song that drags you into its bosom and illuminates the mind. All her natural traits and layers are in the music; you can hear that incredible voice weave and conspire – a majestic and transcendent piece that has already got under my skin. I know many artists who take the same approach as Hero Fisher and ensure their music has the same strength, originality and nuance. I hope they all get the credit they deserve next year – it will be interesting discovering which genres and artists get the biggest profit. I would love to see Fisher live next year and discover how her new material sounds that close. Glue Moon is an album that is not going to be difficult or disanointing: it is going to be a triumphant and exhilarating record that you will want to get involved with! I have spoken about Fisher’s itinerant past and the artists she has shared the stage with. The London-based songwriter has already crafted a great career and is in the mind of many prominent and influential journalists. She will build on that next year and I feel it will be the most exciting and successful one for Fisher. I will leave it there but wanted to congratulate Hero Fisher on a fantastic single and big step. I love the lyrical dynamic and the vocals on it; the rich music and how the song compels you to come back for more. Here is someone who will go a long way in the industry and genuinely has the promise…
TO be a future legend.
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PHOTO CREDIT: @gatesface