Looking for previews and reviews of SXSW 2019? Right this way.

SXSW 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | Live at Leeds 2016 | 2015 | 2014
Sound City 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | Great Escape 2018 | 2015 | 2013 | 2012

Don't forget to like There Goes the Fear on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!

Bands to Watch #358: HÔN

By on Thursday, 15th October 2015 at 12:00 pm

Words by Steven Loftin

Everyone likes things that are a little bit different. We may not admit it, but we love the things in life that don’t conform. Those things that stick out, fingers held high. That leads us nicely on to HÔN, a perfect example of this. With a mainstream sound that echoes that of the poppier end of dance tracks, a lyrical emotional depth of alternative tracks, a style that wouldn’t be lost on a Lady Gaga tour.

Hailing from Denmark, HÔN is the brainwork of Jesper Lidang, frontman and songwriter of The Rumour Said Fire, along with Nis Bested on production duties. Together, they have crafted a sound that is fit for the popular echelons in the industry, while still can keep the scenesters satisfied. (Do you mean keeping them happy / they’d listen to this?)

Utilising his own voice as a key component in the instrumentation, they form layers of dreamscape, allowing his distinctive leading vocals to cut through and deliver a high level of songwriting he has strived for and from all accounts hearing his efforts so far, achieved.


There are also hip-hop heavy moments that can break through, and this is shown in the lead single and first foray into HÔN as an artist, with ‘Silent Lover’. Opening with a massive beat, and leading into his characteristically harmonious chorus, it’s a track with serious pop power that can only prove to be an asset on his new journey. Not to mention that it would be the perfect opener for his debut record.

‘Honeydream’ is the second introductory track to be released in preparation for the debut album ‘White Lion’ which is out near the end of October. ‘Honeydream’ recalls early Chairlift with its use of reverb-heavy synths and melodic charm.


To give you an idea of exactly where this project could be heading, when asked for a description of his new music by his label, Tambourhinoceros, Jesper replied with a two-page essay entitled ‘I Vanish’. As described, his personality vanished into a universe where he became multiple voices and identities. This project has barely begun, yet it can only wield positive, game-changing results.


Bands to Watch #357: Empress Of

By on Monday, 14th September 2015 at 12:00 pm

Lorely Rodriguez, better known by her stage name Empress Of, is not truly a new artist in the conventional sense of our Bands to Watch feature. However, her debut album ‘Me’, recorded in Mexico and released on XL Recordings / Terrible Records just last Friday, and it’s already garnering the Honduran-American who grew up in Los Angeles serious critical plaudits, so we’d be fools not to give her some of our time.

For a young woman who was once a competitive jazz singer and attended – and then quit – an East Coast music school to which she’d won a full scholarship to, it’s not a surprise her vocal acrobatics shine on her debut. For more evidence, have a watch and a listen to ‘How Do You Do It’, a frenetic behind the scenes look at Rodriguez’s touring life. She’d best be getting used to this, with her North American tour campaign to support ‘Me’ having just begun in earnest in her current home in Brooklyn Sunday night at the Music Hall of Williamburg.


Jon Pareles of the New York Times lauded her debut LP, saying of her sound, “Empress Of provides the neatness of pop minus the reassurance.” For sure, her coolness makes her come across like a modern day Kate Bush on album track ‘Need Myself’, who Rodriguez said on Twitter makes her “immediately feel hungover and 19 again”. Presumably Ms. ‘Babooshka’ was a good childhood influence? The influence of another idiosyncratic and uncompromising artist, Bjork, seem also apparent on ‘Kitty Kat’, Rodriguez putting her voice through its paces in an almost Oriental way, synths buzzing and beats booming. I’m imagining it must be quite a feat to behold live. (Sadly, I didn’t get a chance at this in person, as she cancelled her appearance at the Great Escape 2015 back in May.)

When I saw that Rodriguez’s early Spanish/English language EP ‘Systems’ was released in 2013 on UK indie label Double Denim Records, that rung a bell…because New York via Colombia and Vancouver artist Tei Shi signed with them late last year. It seems inevitable that the two will be compared, owing to them both having Latin backgrounds and their predilection towards electronic music with dreamy vocals on top. Will they be friends? Will they be rivals? Either way, I think we’re headed towards a total renaissance of strong female singer/songwriters firmly in the electronic realm. Which can be nothing but a good thing in my books.

‘Me’, the debut album by Empress Of, is out now on XL Recordings / Terrible Records.


Bands to Watch #356: Laurel

By on Thursday, 27th August 2015 at 12:00 pm

London singer / songwriter / producer Laurel Arnell-Cullen, known in music circles simply as Laurel, has the singing voice and musical chops to make her a bona fide pop star, not to mention a certain physical beauty–she moonlights as a model alongside her music career. Indeed, she has already garnered an impressive number of online fans: 3,000 followers on her Soundcloud, 14,000 followers on her Facebook and more than 5,000 followers on her Twitter feed. But take a look past the pretty face, vocal acrobatics and heavy dance beats, and you’ll find a few pleasantly unexpected quirks in Laurel’s musical style that distinguish her from her alt-pop contemporaries.

Laurel’s released her breakout track ‘Fire Breather’ in January 2014. Its stark rhythmic pulse and Laurel’s sultry vocals are a remarkably effective musical accompaniment to the fiery lyrical imagery in the song’s chorus “No, it’s too much / burn my sun / up in flames we go / you fire breather / ash and dust on my door / smoke rise / trying to survive inside your arms”.

‘Fire Breather’ was quickly followed in April 2014 by an EP titled ‘To The Hills’ which features three different mixes of the string-laden title track along with the mesmerizing fan favourite ‘Shells’. Laurel subsequently posted three remixes of ‘Shells’ on her Soundcloud, each emphasising a different facet of the song, revealing both a strong musical foundation and an intrinsic flexibility in her work.

Laurel’s next EP ‘Holy Water’ came out during the Christmas season of 2014 and contains an excellent collaboration with TGTF alumnus Sivu called ‘Come Together’. The duet vocals of ‘Come Together’ alternate between the square, almost robotic delivery of the opening lyrical lines “I’m the maker of rituals / I’m gonna swallow you up and eat you” and the softer, sweeter vocal harmonies that immediately follow. The shimmering wash of instrumental sound is slow and sensual, grounded by a heavy bass pulse and a crisp percussion rhythm.

April 2015 saw the online release of a Laurel’s experimental mixtape EP called ‘Allelopathy’. As our science-minded editor Mary probably already knows, alleleopathy “is a biological phenomenon by which an organism produces one or more biochemicals that influence the growth, survival, and reproduction of other organisms.” It’s an interesting title for a set of songs, presumably referring to the figurative chemistry of a romantic relationship. The songs on the EP are given the scientific names of different plant species, including the cheeky ‘Laurocerasus’, or common laurel.

Laurel’s most recent release is a new single titled ‘Blue Blood’, which sees a return to her alt-pop comfort zone, with dramatic strings and tribal drum beats in the instrumental arrangement along with Laurel’s impressive vocal flexibility. The delicate, ethereal quality of the layered backing vocals is matched by the translucent visual layers in the accompanying video, directed by Ben Newbury.


While Laurel’s most popular songs lean toward a homogenous mainstream pop style, her naturalistic lyrical imagery and the inherently dramatic quality of her instrumental arrangements keep them fresh and unique. Her more experimental work and her collaborations with other artists are equally intriguing, with potential for shaping the evolution of her already precociously prolific body of work.

Laurel’s latest single ‘Blue Blood’ is out now on her own independent label Next Time Records.


Bands to Watch #355: Adam French

By on Wednesday, 19th August 2015 at 1:00 pm

Cheshire-born singer/songwriter Adam French has taken the long way round to bringing his music to the UK. He started out in a band called The Rittz back in 2007, but with his fellow bandmates heading off to university, French found himself at a fork in the road. He decided on a solo career at the end of 2012, combining his passion for music with an equal passion for travel and choosing to tour in Africa before gaining attention at home. His first tour took him through Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa, catching the eye of BBC Introducing in this blog post from 2013.

French is a self-taught musician who plays guitar, piano, bass and drums. His proficiency on each is demonstrated on his ‘More to Life’ EP, which was released in October 2014. The EP might be more accurately called a double-sided single, containing only the title track and its b-side, but it provides just enough of a taste to whet the listener’s appetite.

The gritty, fast-paced single ‘More to Life’ is instantly engaging, with a delightfully danceable rhythm and a catchy chorus. The chorus lyric “I’ve never asked but / I’ve always wondered / just why you’re here / when there’s so much more to life” is layered with a faint but distinctly present backing melody to create a fuller sound as the song draws to a close.

The b-side track is a mysterious and beautiful song called ‘Ivory’, whose tribal percussion sound could have been inspired by French’s sojourn to Africa, along with the chorus lyric “on my knees / it’s your name that I’m calling out / ivory / feel my pain as they cut it all down / here we burn to the ground”. The plucked guitar and crystal clear piano melodies are a perfect accompaniment to French’s vocals, which alternate between whispered verses and a rougher, more dramatic full voice in the song’s intense moments. Once again, several motifs are morphed together in the coda to create a climactic, richly layered effect.

French’s newest release is a fragile and dramatically ethereal track called ‘Silhouettes’, which was released as a single back in April. French uses his silky falsetto most effectively in the recurring line “and you see me as a silhouette of the man I once was” as well as in the echo of the backing vocals. Indeed, his vocal delivery is exquisite on all three tracks, adding to his already spectacular list of performing abilities.

Fans of Nick Mulvey’s folk rock style will enjoy Adam French’s sound, which is less complex than Mulvey’s but more robust and with a world music twist that is equally compelling. French’s Facebook promises new music in the near future, after the summer festival season draws to a close. If you can’t wait that long, you can catch him live at Festival No. 6 in Portmeirion, Wales in September.


Bands to Watch #354: Gwenno

By on Tuesday, 18th August 2015 at 1:00 pm

Following the release of her debut solo EP ‘Môr Hud’ in 2002, Cardiff-born singer Gwenno Saunders went on to represent Cornwall in the 2003 Alternative Eurovision Song Contest, where she won the People’s Choice Award for her performance of ‘Vodya’. The track featured on her 2004 EP of the same name.

In 2005, Gwenno joined the Brighton-based indie pop group The Pipettes as a singer and keyboardist, replacing the founding member, Julia Clarke-Lowes. The band went on to score two UK Top 40 singles with ‘Pull Shapes’ and ‘Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me’. After five years in the band, Gwenno pursued solo projects, which led to her touring as a synth player in 2012 with Australian duo Pnau (Empire of the Sun) and Elton John. In the same year, Gwenno released ‘Ymbelydredd’ – a 15-song EP that was sung entirely in Welsh – on Peski Records.

In October 2014, Gwenno launched her first solo album, ‘Y Dydd Olaf’ (“The Last Day”) – a political concept electropop album, which was sung entirely in Welsh, with the exception of one song in Cornish. The record, which Gwenno produced free of industry expectations, sales targets and commercial shackles, draws inspiration from Owain Owain’s 1976 novel of the same name, and covers themes of patriarchal society, government-funded media propaganda, cultural control, technology, isolation and the importance of minority languages. Produced by Rhys Edwards, ‘Y Dydd Olaf’ was first released with Peski Records, where a limited edition pressing sold out within weeks. The record was just re-released in July 2015, to coincide with Gwenno signing to Heavenly Recordings.

Having recently supported Super Furry Animal singer Gruff Rhys on his ‘American Interior’ tour, Gwenno looks set to embark on a co-headline tour with fellow label-mate H.Hawkline in September. The tour begins at the Leeds Brudenell Games Room on the 17th of September and concludes at Birmingham Rainbow Club on Saturday the 26th of September.

Gwenno’s first solo album ‘Y Dydd Olaf’ is out now on Heavenly Recordings.


Bands to Watch #353: Tears & Marble

By on Friday, 7th August 2015 at 12:00 pm

Bella Hay (vocals) and Cris Kuhlen (producer) make up Tears & Marble, an electronic band from The Hague in Holland. The Dutch duo are able to craft smooth, atmospheric and perfectly-balanced electronic pieces, making them one of the most exciting up-and-coming acts of the year so far.

In 2013, the duo captured the attention of blogs, radio stations and music critics worldwide with their haunting cover of Haddaway’s megahit ‘What Is Love’. Their almost-unrecognisable rendition contained an atmospheric aurora of percussion, guitar plucks and sparse piano keys, replacing the cheesy dance track everyone knows (and loves). The following year, Tears & Marble unveiled their debut single, ‘We Don’t Like You’, an unnerving melody with soft, enthralling vocals. The single proved extremely successful, coming seventh in Beehy.pe’s “Best Track of 2014” list.


‘We Don’t Like You’ was one of five tracks to feature on the ‘Romance’ EP, which Tears & Marble released independently in June 2014. (Listen to it on the band’s Soundcloud.) Since then, Tears & Marble have gone on to win over fans across Europe, regularly playing prominent music festivals, both nationally and internationally. Their appearances included a performance at PITCH Festival in Amsterdam, as well as a support slot during TGTF buzz band Glass Animals’ Amsterdam show in November 2014.

Six months later, Tears & Marble made their UK debut at The Great Escape Festival in Brighton. To coincide with their performance, the duo released ‘Blood & Gold’ as a single from their EP. The track received positive reviews from fans and critics alike, with the music video being selected for VEVO’s “Power Premiere” feature.

Tears & Marble are certainly a band with a vision, and they are doing everything in their power to make it happen. With one successful EP already under their belt, it won’t be long before they unleash new music upon the world. If their future releases are anything like their previous work, there is every chance that Tears & Marble will become a big name in the music business.



About Us

There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF was edited by Mary Chang, based in Washington, DC.

All MP3s are posted with the permission of the artists or their representatives and are for sampling only. Like the music? Buy it.

RSS Feed   RSS Feed  

Learn More About Us

Privacy Policy