Interview: Fort Hope [April 2016]

By Lais

We spoke to Fort Hope ahead of the release of their new EP ‘Manne Of Lawe’, which comes out tomorrow. We found out about their new single, the recording of the EP and how excited they are to get back on the road, both with their headline dates and a support slot with Saosin.

Hi guys! How’s it going? You’ve recently released your single ‘That’s The Way The River Flows’. How’s the reaction been to it so far?

The reaction we’ve had online has been amazing. We haven’t released new music for some time so it’s really great to see our fans enjoying what we put out. The real test will be when we play live though. That’s what we pride ourselves on the most. We’re really excited to see what people make of it.

Your EP ‘Manne Of Lawe’ comes out tomorrow. I’ve just had a quick listen and it’s great! How would you describe it to someone who hasn’t heard it yet?

We’re really proud of the EP: we wanted to put out something big and bold, but we also wanted to show the different sides of the band too. It’s quite varied, from melodic rock, to more of a chilled vibe with our alternate version of ‘That’s The Way The River Flows’ and guitar version of ‘Come Clean’.

How was the writing and recording process for you? Tell us all about it.

Writing and recording is the best part of being in a band. It’s your real chance to put across what’s important to you, to try and make that emotion, event, or feeling real. We spend a lot of time trying to get the core songs sounding great. We want to be able to strip our songs back to just piano or acoustic. For us if they portray the scale and drama of the song with such a small arrangement we know we’ve got something worth working on. We’re continuously writing, storing ideas away for the future and locking up those things that inspire us, ready to unleash them when the moment is there. We were really lucky in that we got to go away and write a bunch of material in one go from scratch. We went and stayed in a beautiful studio in rural Wales, locked ourselves away and turned off our phones etc. It was the best time of our lives. It gave us a chance to get completely lost in it.

The EP title comes from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. How did you decide to name it that?

As a band we’re all really inspired by artwork. The imagery from ‘Manne Of Lawe’ really tied in with the lyrics that were written for the songs. As we were thinking about our time as a band it felt like the metaphors in the tale really spoke and related to us. Stumbling across the illustration of ‘Anemone’ from the pages of the original book stuck out immediately as something that was just perfect to symbolise the emotions of the music.

Do you think ‘That’s The Way The River Flows’ is a good example of what’s to come from the EP?

‘That’s The Way The River Flows’ and ‘Ode To You’ are the first two tracks on the EP. Track three and four are more ‘stripped back’ or alternate versions. We wanted that variation on there, so hopefully people will hear this and look forward to more new music from us.

You have a big UK tour this month and throughout May. How are you feeling about it? How do you find life on the road?

We’re absolutely excited and anxious to get back out on the road again. We definitely feel lost without it: that interaction and being able to perform every day is what we live for.

You’ll also be playing with Saosin. How are you feeling about that? How do you find support slots compared to headline shows?

We’re over the moon to be on that show: not only are we fans of the band but the chance to play to that many new people is incredible. We love the opportunity to show people who we are and what music means to us.

You’ve been announced for Download Festival. Is that exciting? Do you have any other festivals lined up?

Download is the holy grail of rock festivals: it’s that point we look forward to every year. It feels like the place where everyone’s together checking out all their favourite music, having a great time. What’s not to love?

Any other plans for 2016 or is it too early to announce?

We plan to write and produce as many new songs as possible so we can put out more new music as soon as we can.


Try these three interviews

Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]