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SPOTLIGHT ON ELIZABETH FADER

Elizabeth Fader's new single, Lost In The Middle is out now! We chat to the musician her music and so much more.

Image: Seiya Taguchi


Australian musician Elizabeth Fader recently shared her shimmering new single, Lost In The Middle. The song is a continued exploration of indie electro-pop sounds, with the singers introspective songwriting taking centre stage.


Lost In The Middle conceptually explores the feeling of being in limbo and relinquishing control, with Fader sharing with MILKY "Sometimes the only answer is to live in the moment". The track is laced with vulnerability and strength, get to a glittering and nostalgic soundscape.


Directed and edited by Jordan Watton, the songs accompanying visual captures the sense of isolation within a crowd. In this instance, Fader is at a party where she is all alone, dancing by herself and is left as the last one standing.


No stranger to the industry, Fader is a member of Phantastic Ferniture, a musical project she embarked on with old friends old friends Julia Jacklin, Ryan K Brennan and Tom Stephens. Since stepping out solo, Fader has shared the stage with the likes of Gordi, Julien Baker, Julia Jacklin and The Teskey Brothers.


Lost In The Middle is out now! Read our interview with Elizabeth Fader below.


Tell us a bit about how your musical journey began…

The pub across the road from one of my first houses in Sydney (The Excelsior, Glebe) hosted an open mic night on Wednesdays. I decided to finish my first two songs so I could play it. I’d been playing guitar for a while but songwriting was definitely a new field for me. The only audience members included the sound tech, the person behind the bar and my friend Michael.

Congratulations on the single!

Lost In The Middle conceptually explores the feeling of being in limbo and relinquishing control. What drove you to explore these themes?


Thanks!

Sometimes you just gotta stop thinking and lighten up…take life a bit less seriously. Sometimes the only answer is to live in the moment. I think we can all relate to that feeling in 2020.

The release is accompanied by a great visual. How important are the visuals to you when it comes to conveying the story and meaning present on the track and how involved are you in the creative process?

Yeah really important. I was lucky to have worked with a stellar team for this shoot. Jordan Watton directed and he did an amazing job. I think the textures and colours of the visual are most important to me. I always imagined this sparkly, purple, blue, pink, sequinned, misty palette for this song which is what you see in the video.

What messages do you hope listeners take away from the song?


The essence of the song is about not trying to save someone else. Sometimes you just gotta see if you’re willing to accept the reality on hand, if it’s worth it. If it is – enjoy it.


Your previous single Big Mistake definitely has more of a rock influence to it. Is that an indication that you’ll be infusing different genres and soundscapes within your releases? Particularly within a full-length body of work?

Big Mistake is the only rock detour, the other tracks are more congruous with LITM and Encore, or are slow burners.

Are there any other genres and avenues of music you’d like to explore in the future within your releases?

Oh yeah for sure. TBH right now I’m head over heels for country music. Partly because I just watched Nashville. I’m pretty keen to work with pop-music producers too, to see where that takes me.


How has the evolution of sound throughout your career influenced your musical practice?


So much. Different genres tend to feature certain instruments. So when I started getting into a more alt/pop field, I started incorporating drum machines and synths into the live set. But I’m first and foremost a guitarist. I spent a lot of time working on guitar for Phantastic Ferniture, getting into pedals and amps. Because I’m more into songwriting now I tend to practice singing, writing and guitar technique.


Could you tell us a bit about your creative process when writing and recording songs?


Generally I write something on acoustic with vocals, work out the verses, chorus, bridge or outro. Then I’ll take it to one of a few people to co-write. Or if it’s fine as it is, then it remains. Sometimes songs rush out fully formed or need demoing and studio time, and maybe a few other figurative voices.

What has been the most challenging part about creating music during the COVID-19 pandemic

To be honest, nothing really. It’s been great for me. Gave me a moment among years of working way too hard to finally breathe. I think I’ve written my best songs this year. I have more time and space to ruminate on life, think about others, and that’s where authenticity comes from for me.


You’ve just supported Gordi on tour. How was the experience of performing socially distanced shows, and do you have any post-pandemic touring plans?


Gordi and her team were all lovely, so accommodating. Performing in a socially distanced setting has been great so far. I mean, there are so many things you miss if you look for them you know. But it’s hard to not feel glass half full about it given we know we are lucky to be doing it at all. In a way, that makes it more special too, and also makes me remember why I do it.


What can audiences expect from one of your live show?


New songs.

RAPID FIRE

Biggest influences?

This week – Phoebe Bridgers, Bob Dylan, Miley Cyrus, Kita Alexander .

Dream collaboration?

Blake Mills.


Album that has had the most impact on you?

Kaki King – Dreaming of Revenge.


Best song of 2020?

Bob Dylan - I’ve Made Up My Mind To Give Myself To You.


If you could create the soundtrack for any film, which one would it be?

My Neighbor Totoro.


Hannah Montana or Miley Cyrus?

Definitely Miley Cyrus


The best/most memorable show you’ve ever performed?

Julien Baker support at Newtown Social Club.


Album you would listen to on repeat on a road trip?

Bruce Springsteen: The Live Series: Stripped Down.


Best concert you have been to

Tinariwen – Womad.


Last concert you went to?

Donny Benét.


If you were a Spice Girl, what would your spice nickname be?

Chameleon Spice


Guilty music pleasure?

Lol nothing guilty…I’m very open about my sometimes-trashy taste in music. Oooh…Lisa Loeb! Discovered her this year and it’s SO heart on your sleeve 90’s music, but her song Sandalwood is so poignant it makes me wanna cry.


If you could support any artist on tour, who would it be?

Phoebe Bridgers.


An artist you think has had the most influence on the music industry?

Radiohead.


What advice would your current self, give your future self, a year from now?

Let go.


The moment you knew you wanted to be a musician?

I think I knew from an early age, but only realised I could do it in my early 20’s.

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