Figmennt have finally released their highly anticipated début EP nearly two years after their arrival on the scene. Doing their best to keep the spirit of 80's shoegaze alive, with their sharp ear for synth pop and indie music aside we ask; whatever happened to Figmennt?
Two years ago at Third Outing HQ we were saying; "Figmennt, this band is going to be huge"..."Figmennt, let's set up a label and release these guys first". Then suddenly, radio silence. Nothing was to be heard after their promising debut release She. Figmennt disappeared. The Northern revolution was well and truly finito. So, then imagine our surprise to hear the release of a new Figmennt EP after an almost two year hiatus? We were bewildered. This is how it goes...
Loads of reverb? Check. A light wash of feedback? Check. Fuzztone guitars? Check. Plip-plop bass, drums like a child bashing a tin of sweets with a stick and production that sounds like it comes from a five grand studio a day? Check, check, check. Here's the deal with Figmennt. You can't really pigeonhole them. Are they C86 revisited or shoegazing with a pop sensibility? Quite possibly both. The band's music is altogether lighter and brighter than their shoeagaze classmates. But it's clearly poppier and still very predictable.
Figmennt have taken their time to make this record. They've binned previous attempts and created new ideas based on their developing relationships and live performances. But for a record which has taken so long to release, the sound is still very 1990's rather than 2017. You ask yourself if this release could really add anything to the current British alternative music scene? We're only half questioning. Figmennt aren't the kind of band who follow trend.
As a whole the EP stands its ground. The wall of noise is well balanced with subtle sounds, and there's a decent effort on the vocals which don't overly overpower the music. But there's work left to do. Take our recent interview with Ulrika Spacek who combine melody with noise perfectly. Figmennt haven't reached this level yet. But then despite the years down the line, let's remember this is only the follow up. And we should all embrace, and brace. Figmennt are back! So, with more than two years under our belts since we last conversed, we got back in touch with the Northern boys from Figmennt to find out about all new things from the EP release to their musical ambitions...
You were one of the first bands to feature on Third Outing two years ago. How has Figmennt evolved in that time? Our sound has changed quite a bit, we’ve ditched some old songs from our set that we feel didn’t really show our sound. We’ve been gigging a lot and we’ve all grown up a bit really. All of our music tastes have changed slightly as well and that probably has a big impact on our song writing. One of the biggest things that has evolved since we first started the band is how close we are now, our first band practice was only about the third time we’d met each other.
Being where you are as a band, do you feel pressure to musically innovate? Definitely, but we suppose that’s what every band wants to do; create a noise that no one has heard before.We have similar music tastes but we also all listen to very different music, so when we write we gather influence from different genres and then combine them. By no means do we think that what we are playing is something never heard before, but we like to think that our sound stands out from the rest of the music you might hear at the moment.
The last time we spoke you said "the EP is coming within' the next months; expect ambient drones and fuzzy guitar". That was two years ago...We’d recorded a few more tracks around the time we recorded She, then we started gigging and writing more and our sound just changed, we didn’t love the music we’d first wrote as much as we thought we did and we started dropping them from our set as we wrote new songs. We felt as though they weren’t good enough to release. We wanted to play songs that created a more intense atmosphere when we were playing them live and get the crowd moving. Today and Fold are the only two tracks on our EP that were written around the time we released She.
"We want more people to listen to our music across the country"
What were your emotions like once the album was finally online? It was a huge relief, we stressed over it a lot and lost a bit of motivation. We’re very pleased about the reception. It’s inspired us to get into the studio again and we’re planning to release more tracks in the summer that we’re very excited for people to hear.
So then what's the new ambition for Figmennt? We want more people to listen to our music across the country, so that we can start thinking about doing a tour and hopefully a few festivals; we’d love to travel with our music. We’ve played a lot around Teesside and really enjoy it, but the furthest we've traveled for a gig is Leeds or Newcastle so we’d really love to broaden our audience.