Interview: The Fuchsias

The Fuchsias are an experimental instrumental duo from Brighton who recently released their debut EP, "Isles". Full of complex and unique arrangements and performances, the duo's mysterious music is highly stylized and atmospheric. We reached out to them with a few questions, and they were kind enough to oblige. 

Hello, How are you today? 

Happy and healthy so very grateful. When it is this cold and the sun so bright in Brighton it makes you feel alive again after those dark wet months.

Who are the Fuchsias? 

We are two currently, but are recalibrating to a four for live shows later in the year.  I'm Bobby - I play guitars and synths and Steve plays all drums and percussion, not forgetting the mighty Bob Earland who added some extra synths and mixed ‘Isle’.


You guys have been collaborating for a while now. Do you think that some musicians are naturally drawn to each other or work especially well together? 

I certainly do - I feel fortunate that we click so well and not just musically. Also to have grown up playing music with close friends. I’m not sure I could do it any other way. It is important to always be yourself and in that relaxed space is where creativity flows more freely for us.

Your music is quite complex, do your songs take a long time to come together? Do you have a dedicated practice space or studio where you work?

It can take time this way. Especially as most of our tracks are quite long. I have a small studio at home in Brighton but we rehearse and record all over the place - Brighton, Lewes, London and Amsterdam - I'd been living over there for the past few years so a lot of this EP was finished off there, for that reason ‘Isle’ felt kinda fractured in its creation. Although playing live is where the most fun is had and where most new organic material emerges, our sound as a band has been ultimately defined by this time spent in the studio.

Your recent "Isle EP" is beautiful and tender, but also on the darker side. Do you think you have an inclination towards the darker side of life or is that just in your music?

I hope that it is just in the music! With the stream of consciousness approach to writing like mine, it just happens rather than trying to design it. Even if you aren’t entirely aware of how it is happening, the music you write is going to reflect what is going on deep inside of you. Our music has always been about contrast - it just comes out that way: inside the deepest darkness but with warm light shining in, or a sense of real menace that can also feel soothing at the same time. I find it hard to write one or the other - for me the two have to somehow live in the same space. I like the idea of something colourful and beautiful being smashed into tiny pieces and then put back together in a different shape, creating jagged and unpredictable tangents. This seems to be the way we write so often seems to have that contrast of dark and light.

Was the instrumental approach a conscious decision? 

Yes. I have always written mainly instrumental music or been in instrumental bands. If there are lyrics in a track then a story is already in stone. I like it when someone listening can bend music to their own experience. Of course that happens with the best vocal music, but for me it is somehow easier in instrumental work that affords the listener more time and space to get lost in the music, ultimately finding meaning in where your own mind might take you on a personal level. All that said we are hoping to work with a vocalist in some way on our next release! I have heard a special voice that I hope to try and work with… but its kind of a secret.

The music scene in Brighton appears to in good health from afar, what can you say about calling it your home? 

Brighton has always been a powerful bubble - creatively, socially and politically. The music and art scene here is overflowing, there is so much quality music pouring out of this area. Its funny that I have done the ‘Brighton boomerang’ several times now: inexplicably searching for pastures new, then returning tail between legs, realising just how much I had taken it for granted. Now the grass is definitely greener here - I love how small it is, how vibrant it is and how you can step out a few miles into vast open countryside, not to mention the sea of course. Brighton can be a bit of a fish bowl sometimes but then that is one of its many charms. 

What's next for the Fuchsias? 

As we speak we are writing and recording for our second release - there is much to set free. We are playing live shows later in the year so we are opening up the band for some others to get involved. Myself and Steve met years ago in a live setting that was solely based on improvising - this is highly enjoyable and we don’t feel constrained to necessarily replicate what we release live, instead feeling free when we do gigs so our music can veer off piste into new material and anything can happen.