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Interview: Savoir Adore

By on Friday, 27th July 2012 at 11:00 am

Mary missed chatting in person with Savoir Adore at the Great Escape this past May, but Luke sent these questions over to the band in the hopes that we could catch them over email during the summer. What follows below is their spirited responses to our queries about their new material coming out later this year and their hometown of Brooklyn, among other things. Read on… Oh, and their answers to our Quickfire Questions? They are here.

What have Savoir Adore been up to lately?
We just finished a U.S. tour with Jukebox the Ghost and getting ready to release our new record, ‘Our Nature’!

You recently came over to the UK for a couple of shows, how was that?
It was amazing! Especially Great Escape in Brighton, that was SO much fun!

What do you most like (or dislike) about the British crowds?

Our shows have been so much fun in the UK, that we can only say good things about the crowds! They’ve been very enthusiastic and exciting to play for.

Electronic music has been on a steady rise in the mainstream music press in recent years, what is the reason for this shift?
onestly, it’s a combination of a lot of factors… The ease of production programs like logic, reason and protools and also the popularity of dance music overall in the mainstream. I think that organic interest in it has really propelled a lot of new acts…

Which bands would you say are ones to watch out for in electro?
French Horn Rebellion!!!!!!! NEXT JACK SWING.

Brooklyn bands have a reputation for being ‘cool’, do you consider yourselves cool?

Ahh, no we don’t… but perhaps that makes us ‘cool’? Maybe? Eh???

Why is Brooklyn seen as the epicentre of music that is cool and trendy?
I think it’s a combination of NYC being a cultural hub and the fact that Brooklyn is the cheaper neighorhood to live in. I think that naturally creates an environment of young, enthusiastic and experimental artists.

Your music is based around fantasy worlds and imaginative concepts, where do you draw your inspiration from?
We draw inspiration from a lot of places. Our own wild imaginations and goofy tendencies… Music, movies, books, places, environments. We also enjoy the challenge of writing songs and stories based on fantastical characters and settings.

You’re gearing up to release new album ‘Our Nature’, what can you tell us about it?
‘Our Nature’ is the cautionary tale of a monster, a girl and their wild love for one another.

What fantastical themes will we be treated to?
Monsters. Particle physics. Dreamscapes. Love.

You haven’t released an LP since 2009, why the delay?
We really wanted to take our time with the second album. Let things develop naturally and polish the song structures and productions. For our first EP and LP we had a lot of fun trying to record as fast as possible, for this we thought it would be a completely different challenge doing the opposite.

What plans do you have for the rest of the year?
Hopefully a lot of touring in support of the new record. Also making music videos and working on new music!


Quickfire Questions #32: Paul Hammer and Deidre Muro of Savoir Adore

By on Wednesday, 25th July 2012 at 11:00 am

Brooklyn’s Savoir Adore have given the world their special brand of fantasy pop. But after not being able to hook up with them in person at the Great Escape, we thought it was time to touch base with Paul and Deidre this summer and ask them some questions. First, here are their answers to the TGTF Quickfire Questions. We’ll be bringing you another band-specific q&a soon.

1. What song is your earliest musical memory?
Paul Hammer – Prince’s ‘Purple Rain’. It’s my mom’s favorite song so she used to put it on in the car all the time.
Deidre Muro – ‘All I Ask of You from the Phantom of the Opera; singing it when I was 7, with my Dad accompanying me on piano in our living room.

2. What was your favourite song as a child?
Paul – The intro theme song to ‘The Mysterious Cities of Gold’.
Deidre – ‘Hero’ by Mariah Carey.

3. What song makes you laugh?
Paul – ‘You Know My Name (Look up the Number)’ by the Beatles.
Deidre – ‘Poupee de Cire Poupee de Son’ by France Gall (Luxembourg’s winning entry to 1965’s Eurovision).

4. What song makes you cry?
Paul – This has definitely changed over time. Jeff Buckley’s ‘Last Goodbye’ used to get me teary eyed every time. Now it’s Sam Cooke’s ‘A Change is Gonna Come’.
Deidre – ‘Strange Fruit’, Billie Holliday.

5. What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love? (It’s up to you if you want this to be sweet, naughty, etc.)
Paul – Mariah Carey – ‘Always be My Baby’.
Deirdre – Alanis Morissette – ‘Head Over Feet’.

6. What song makes you think of being upset / angry? (Example: maybe you heard it when you were angry with someone and it’s still with you, and/or something that calms you down when you’re upset, etc.)
Paul – Pretty much all of Hank Williams’ songs.
Deidre – Patsy Cline has the saddest of all voices.

7. Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Paul – Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’.
Deidre – Nancy Sinatra’s ‘Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)’

8. Who is your favourite writer? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Paul – Elliot Smith, Ryan Adams, Roald Dahl.
Deidre – John Lennon, George Gershwin, the collective anonymous group that developed early American blues and gospel.

9. If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
Paul – I’d definitely be a chef.
Deidre – A professional organiser.

10. If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why?
Paul – Ryan Adams – ‘Heartbreaker’, because I’ve probably listened to it a thousand times and still find new things to enjoy.
Deidre – Jeff Buckley – ‘Grace’. It’s an album I’ve been listening to since I was 15, and it can transport me to many different times in my life, so I’d bring that for the beauty and the memories.


Video of the Moment #856: Savoir Adore

By on Sunday, 24th June 2012 at 6:00 pm

Here is the video for ‘Dreamers’, the title track of Savoir Adore‘s new EP (I reviewed it here). What is this video about? Someone tell me, please. I guess this is a ‘dream’ sequence of two misfits thrown together? I like the song by itself better, personally.

I saw the band perform at the Great Escape in May; read about it and watch a video from their stripped down session at LIFE here.



Great Escape 2012: Day 2 Afternoon Roundup – 11th May 2012

By on Monday, 28th May 2012 at 1:00 pm

On paper, my Friday had the most challenging schedule for the entire weekend, with 2 panel sessions (and a performance in between, all the way down on the seafront – eep!), and lots of and lots of band clashes. It had the potential to be the most frustrating day of all, but to be honest, it actually worked out fine, thanks to my planning and some accidental run-ins with some TGTF favourites. First, I’ll explain what happened in the afternoon…

After getting shut out of a morning session because “it’s full up” (I’d been to sessions the day before and people could stand on the sides if they’d arrived late; I can only guess I was refused entry b/c I was a mere 10 minutes tardy), I spent some time walking and window shopping round the North Laines area of Brighton, where there are lots of cutesy little independent shops. Forget cute shoes, there are cobblestones, my friends. Brighton, like DC, has colourful murals on the sides of buildings, except in Brighton, they’re on the sides of pubs. Take for example this unusual one of legendary soul singer James Brown:

I met up with my local PR friend Ed and we went to a charming little café. I’ve never seen mozzarella on a burger before but I ordered it and it really hit the spot. I should have photographed it, the chef lady put a massive slice on top of my beef. Totally epic. But good thing I was all sorted out with food, since we would be soaking up some drinks later on in the day. We headed down the hill and to the sea…but not for the sea. For bands, of course!

Like SXSW, the Great Escape has pretty good daytime programming, including a pretty active scene thanks to the Alternative Escape. At the seafront club LIFE, Euphonios, Killing Moon, the Recommender and Strongroom Alive were putting on a great showcase all afternoon. This was great, as the weather had finally turned the corner, the sun was shining, and I was able to check out Savoir Adore (who took the spot of an absent Saint Saviour) and I Dream in Colour in this unique performance space, akin to an attic or loft with a window.

Speaking of the word ‘later’ and time, I wish I had known about Savoir Adore so much earlier. I’m happy to say, though, that unlike most Americans who have stumbled onto them in the last couple weeks, I did not come to know them by the Tide laundry detergent telly advert featuring their song ‘Pop Goes the World’. (I think it’s highly possible to be their ‘5 Years’ Time’-style breakout, so if it gets them more fans, all the better.) The band from New York City had to do a stripped set in the cramped LIFE upstairs stage, but they sounded amazing. I’m rather glad they don’t live far from me; I’m hoping that means they’ll tour in DC again soon enough. Watch a clip of their song ‘Loveliest Creature’ below.


I had promised Shell Zenner I’d swing by the Queens Hotel to say hello while she did her on-site broadcast for Amazing Radio. When I arrived, I was kind of surprised their set up was literally in the middle of the lobby. What was to stop any streaking bands? Oh wait… I did however go downstairs to catch half of Sissy and the Blisters’ set on the Amazing Radio stage. Loud and balls to the wall, exactly what hung over festival goers needed to start day 2 at the Great Escape. Me? I headed up and back out to return to LIFE, wanting to save my ears for later.

I Dream in Colour’s fan base keeps growing by leaps and bounds, and the London via Essex band stuck this date at the Alternative Escape in before the following weekend’s ‘London’ single launch in, where else, London. (Read John’s review of their latest single here.) Singer Richard Judge looked particularly smart and respectable in a blindingly white dress shirt, which was deliciously at odds when he picked up his guitar and became Mr. Rock Star. And if you were wondering, yes, I love it when he’s on his guitar. Personally, I think it suits him more than when he’s behind the keys. But that’s just me…

Then it was back up the hill with Ed to attend Record of the Day’s discussion entitled, “What’s the point of music reviews in the digital age?” Obviously, this is something of interest to all music bloggers worth their salt, because we all want to be professional writers someday. Former Q editor-in-chief Paul Rees said something I truly applauded: he said labels shouldn’t penalise reviewers with annoying stream versions of albums and that more often than not, it’s someone inside the label that’s leaking albums, not the journalists. Well said.

Then I personally caused a moment of silence when I asked if the reason why most publications and even music Web sites now run 100-word album reviews (obviously not long enough to fully explain any part of an album) and if this was a symptom of the lack of attention span for most internet users. You could hear the crickets. I wasn’t sure if they wanted to punch me for being insolent, or they just refused to admit that what I’d described was exactly what was happening on the Internet.

Feeling like I needed to explain myself, I chatted with freelancer Will Hodgkinson of the Times and Mojo writing fame after the session to agree with what he’d replied with, that we should be giving our readers credit and not dumb content down for them. With that, I felt proud of what we do here at TGTF: there’s a reason why there are more words for all of our reviews you will see on this Web site: I’d rather you have a more complete picture of an album rather than the soundbite-y types that have become far too commonplace on the Web. If you can’t commit to read one of our reviews, you must not care enough about music, because we love what we do. And if our reviews aren’t what you want, then I’d rather you go somewhere else.

I huffed and wheezed my way back down to the Queens Hotel with every intention of seeing Mammal Club there. Unfortunately, I got conflicting reports about whether the band from Newcastle was performing by people I saw in the lobby. To be sure, I went downstairs to check out who was performing and whoever was on sounded nothing like Mammal Club, so either the times had changed or I didn’t recognise them. Either way, I missed them. I also missed them at Liverpool Sound City, because they were playing the same night and time as our stage. Boo.

Instead, I headed back to LIFE in the hopes of running into more bloggers at the Blog Up event that had started earlier in the afternoon. It was getting close to finished, and Shell Zenner was back at it, spinning tunes from her beloved iPad. Who should I run into but Breaking More Waves’ Robin? What an exceedingly nice and sweet chap! Seeing I’d never met him before, it was great to finally see him. To me as a blogger, this was what was so great about both the Great Escape and Sound City: being American, I rarely go to events where there are huge groupings of bloggers.

Besides Robin, I had also met Ollie of Memphis Industries (who always ReTweets our Dutch Uncles and Field Music-related Tweets – cheers Ollie!) and Matthew of Song, by Toad the day before as well, which was also very cool. My heart warmed every time I heard someone say to me, “oh yeah! I read There Goes the Fear all the time!” and “so it’s you who runs it! So wonderful you could come over to America for this, nice to meet you!” When I am at home, I am reminded by the personal difficulty to set up interviews and press passes in America that TGTF isn’t a household name in America…yet. We’re no Pitchfork or Stereogum; we don’t try to be either and I don’t want us to be like either too. We’re doing what we want to do, the way we want to…and I wouldn’t have it any other way.


Great Escape 2012: Initial impressions, tips and bands from the first afternoon – 10th May 2012

By on Thursday, 24th May 2012 at 2:00 pm

I arrived to the Great Escape 2012 a day early to sort my delegates badge ahead of time – an indubitably good idea, as I could swan in the next day to the press centre and pass the delegates queue – but my introduction to Brighton on Wednesday the 9th was, unfortunately, a wet one. The National Express coach from Heathrow dropped me off at the very wet seafront, with no shelter whatsoever. Let me tell you, dragging a large suitcase while rain and wind is lashing about in every direction is not a fun time. But I was in town for the Great Escape, and you do what you must. Wednesday night was saved as I ‘accidentally’ ran into Mike Bradford, local blogger and of the Recommender fame, and we had a drink in the Prince Albert by the train station. Later on, I got a text from my friends Johnny and Larry from the AU Review (nice chaps I’d met at SXSW) and we had an exceedingly gorgeous Indian near the seafront. So not all was lost. I was just tired of being…damp. I’d left Washington in the middle of a storm. I was aching for sunshine. (Which I later got…)

Thursday proved to be another difficult day weather-wise, as the rain gods appeared unwilling to cooperate. Still, I was determined to make the best of it, even if I kept getting lost in the rambling streets with dead ends all over Brighton. I missed a morning panel session but I think it was fate that I happened to walk by the front of the Corn Exchange just as Zulu Winter, my new band friends from SXSW, pulled up in their van, and they all took turns giving me a hug and asked how things were going. There’s something to be said for being recognised months after you’ve met a group of guys who no doubt meet hundreds of people at gigs every night, and that something is a very nice feeling of validation.

Still, I had yet to get my feet wet (no pun intended) at the Great Escape, so first on my colour-coded schedule was Francois and the Atlas Mountains at the Prince Albert. Thanks to yesterday’s drink with Mike, I knew where I needed to go. I thought okay, it’s Thursday, and it’s early. If I show up 15 minutes ahead of schedule, I’ll be fine, right? I couldn’t have been more wrong.

I made my way up the staircase to the main performance area to find people already jam-packed in front of the stage. I doubt the man who was supposed to be keeping tabs on the number of people allowed up was actually counting, as he kept encouraging women such as myself to squeeze in further. As someone who gets extremely claustrophobic (even on airplanes), this made for a very worrisome situation. Worse, their roadie kept coming through the crowd with the final pieces of their gear (of which they had quite a lot), pushing himself and the gear rather (in)conveniently past me, so I had no choice but to practically squish myself into another woman who’d come upstairs around the same time as I did. This happens all the time to me in airports, train stations, really anywhere there is a massive crowd: I think people must decide, “over there, there’s a small, slight Oriental girl, go round her, she’ll be no problem, that’s the plan!” and trust me, it is not a good feeling. Still looking for that tall, strong English bodyguard boyfriend type if anyone’s offering…

With punters sardined into the small place, the band said hello and started in the 6music-playlisted ‘Les Plus Beaux’, which sounded great. The band even had choreographed arm and hand movements when they weren’t playing their instruments. Bless. It was one of the most adorable moments of my Great Escape. I got through one more song with the Frenchies before deciding I had leave to get some air. Also, I figured it was better to let some desperate music lovers hanging out on the stairs a chance to see some of the action before it was all over. But I would like to see them again sometime. Just without less bodies pushed up against me.

It was time to go back down the hill and head for a venue near the seafront. However, on my way down, I stopped for a time to see Slow Down, Molasses, a Canadian band that by all accounts went down very well with the folks assembled at the Hub, the one large outdoor venue at the Great Escape, sitting squarely in the middle of Jubilee Square. This would be the place where the wristbandless and young parents would bring their sprogs all weekend, and to me embodied the true spirit of the Great Escape: even though I had a badge, I found generally speaking the places where wristband punters and badge holders stood together in harmony were a better experience. Because you shouldn’t have to put a price on music.

The rain continued when I headed down to Volks on Madeira Drive, making an egregious mistake. The showcase had been moved not cancelled, but stupidly the staff at Volks weren’t aware of the change so I just assumed I would not be seeing Savoir Adore or be doing the previously arranged interview with them. (It had moved to the Loft, which in hindsight I probably could have made if I’d organised myself better, but I was too wiped, my phone was giving me trouble, and I was just frustrated with myself and the weather.) By then, jetlag and exhaustion was kicking in and thanks to a jammed O2 network and no service near the water, my mobile battery was dying.

Time to get a mango slushie, eat a salad I’d purchased the day before, rest for a moment and recharge myself and my phone. My phone is the wrong word for the time, as our Gateshead writer Martin had loaned me a spare iPhone of his and never working with one before, there was a steep learning curve, including how to turn off an nonexistent cafe wifi connection. At one point the phone wasn’t responding to any network and I was texting both him and fellow Great Escape fest-goer Braden with a nervous tic because I thought I’d broken it! (The phone eventually righted itself and over the weekend, I became a passable iPhone user, thank goodness.) Note: if you’re supposed to meet anyone in Brighton for the Great Escape, get mobile numbers. You might not be able to check your email at all, depending on where you are. I would have Tweeted far more if my phone didn’t keep doing that circle-y thing in the corner as it tried to reach the Twitter Web site.

I got a frantic text from Johnny of the AU Review, reporting that the rain was chucking it down at the Sounds of Australia stage at the Hub, and that I should probably take my time getting there to see Husky. I’d fallen in love with ‘Forever So’, their debut album on Sub Pop, that I’d organised an interview with them post-gig as well. Eventually I had to leave my dry haven at the café and head up the hill.

Yeah, that hill. No-one tells you how bad this hill can be, if you’re trying to run back and forth between venues. In a way, it’s similar to Roskilde in the sense that you should expect to queue for your favourite – and the more hotly-tipped – acts, and you should never assume there will be room for you. In that respect, the Hub and this Australian showcase – the rain notwithstanding – was a great place to see bands all weekend. Halfway into their set, the rain gods relented, leading to the band to end their set with the truly lovely and evocative ‘The Woods’ (video clip below), followed by ‘History’s Door’ (the latter of which you can download from the widget at the end of this post). Their sound is a thoroughly palatable blend of harmonies ala Fleet Foxes and the nonbluegrassy, too happy, peppy, indie folk elements of Mumford and Sons, you know, before they became megastars.


Afterwards, Gideon and Husky himself were kind enough to take time out of their afternoon here in Brighton – which turned out to be the same day they arrived in England! – for a brief chat we had in Jubilee Library about their music and the Melbourne music scene, which you can view here. But by then it was time for a snack, a change of clothes (remember, I’d gotten thoroughly soaked!), and time to refocus for my first night at the Great Escape.


(Great Escape 2012 flavoured!) Album Review: Savoir Adore – Dreamers EP

By on Friday, 4th May 2012 at 12:00 pm

There seems to be every permutation of the genre ‘pop’ in the music business today. But this is a new one, even for me: fantasy pop. It’s the genre that Brooklyn duo Savoir Adore use to describe themselves, and I find it a great compromise. There’s an ethereal dreaminess to their vocals, yet I think putting them alongside dream pop bands like Beach House would be lazy journalism. Fantasy, whether Harry Potter, Japanese manga or Xena: Warrior Princess is your chosen poison, is a broad enough category that the uniquely crafted sounds by this pair of best friends can use this sobriquet and not feel stifled by the restrictions of the box. Tagging on the word ‘pop’ works in this instance because when you listen to this music, it’s not a question, it’s a given: these songs will get inside your head and you will remember them. For the best of reasons.

Savoir Adore will be releasing their next EP, ‘Dreamers’, on the 21st of May on Neon Gold Records, who acted as Wolf Gang’s stepping stone into a major label deal. The title track ‘Dreamers’ is actually a track that will feature on their second album, ‘Our Nature’, which has an expected autumn release date in the UK.

This release is structured rather unusually; you might think ‘single’ is a better description of it, since of the seven tracks, there is ‘Dreamers’ itself and then five very different remixes of it. The only other song on this EP that’s not a variant of ‘Dreamers’ is ‘Sea of Gold’. But let’s focus on the original songs.

‘Dreamers’ has a childlike playfulness to it; while synths buzz along with the dream beat, you can practically feel like the purest sunlight is shining down on you while you’re sunbathing at the beach. When I first heard this EP, I assumed they were from Australia or somewhere else far flung and potentially idyllic. It doesn’t sound like it’s come out of Brooklyn. There’s a sweet refrain by Deidre Muro of “you can stay where you are / I will wake you / I will wake you in the morning / you can stay where you are, so don’t you worry / don’t you worry, keep on sleeping.” Really? This sounds like a commercial for a Hawaiian resort hideaway. It’s the kind of “enjoy the life you’re living” song that I suppose the more jaded people will detest, but sometimes you need music that can put you in that zen mode when you’re stressed out, and this fits the bill nicely.

Now let’ shave a listen to ‘Sea of Gold’. It’s funny, for some reason I was hearing a Cut Copy vibe at first hearing this, but it’s actually a deceptively simple track, with a mesmerising drum loop with expansive vocals that build as the song continues. Lyrically, it’s not as evocative as ‘Dreamers’, which is too bad, because sonically it has the potential. It’s a little too sleepy.

The remixes on the EP come from some famous folks: Chiddy Bang’s Xaphoon Jones, Brazil’s Database, plus fellow new Yorkers the Golden Pony, Body Language, and French Horn Rebellion, all of whom their very distinctive spin on the original. I’m torn between naming either the Golden Pony and French Horn Rebellion’s versions the best, as I think both embody the bouncy, fancy free feeling in the original. I like remixes, so I found this EP to be fun and refreshing; however, if remixes leave you cold, you might want to have a listen to this on Spotify before forking over your change.


The ‘Dreamers’ EP by Savoir Adore is out on the 21st of May on Neon Gold. The band will start a short tour of the UK on Sunday at London Notting Hill Arts Centre.

Sunday 6th May 2012 – London Notting Hill Arts Club (Communion show)
Monday 7th May 2012 – London Queen of Hoxton (Simply Rad show)
Tuesday 8th May 2012 – Cardiff Undertone
Thursday 10th May 2012 – Brighton Great Escape Festival (Record of the Day show)
Friday 11th May 2012 – Brighton Great Escape Festival (Neon Gold show)
Thursday 17th May 2012 – London Camp (Pop Shop / Neon Gold show)


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.

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