2011 was a big year for Fixers; a whirlwind of hype that ultimately saw them sign to Mercury for their debut album. As we find out, that’s only half the runaway train of a story. Words & Photo: Emma Swann.
Fixers booked themselves a gig before they were a band. This is the Fixers who’ve been one of 2011’s most hyped new acts, the Fixers who’ve not long signed with a major label. The Fixers who, immediately following our chat, are off to arguably the most famous recording studios in the world to master their debut album. “We won’t talk about this stuff because we get scared – we still pretend we’re rehearsing for a one-off show,” is their response. “It’s crazy how this is happening,” explains Roo Bhasin, sat next to vocalist Jack Goldstein (the remainder of the band are off to find coffee following our photoshoot). His bandmate continues: “There’s no way we would’ve seen this happening back then. It was booked before we got the band together. Then, by the time we’d done two rehearsals, we realised it was never going to be a one-off, regardless. We were slugging away so much at it.”
Their hard work over the past eighteen months has paid off: Fixers’ immediate future features a string of live dates, and the release of new EP, ‘Imperial Goddess Of Mercy’. That’s after a visit to Abbey Road to complete the album. Yet, they’re already worried about being bored with the result. It’s nearly six months until the record will be released – it took them just four weeks to tire of previous EP, ‘Here Comes 2011 So Let’s All Head For The Sun’.
“You’ve got to wait so long for it to come out,” Roo explains. “By that time, we’re gonna most likely be bored with it, we would have moved on to something new.”
Jack goes further: “There was only a month between recording the last EP and when it came out, and by the time it came out we were bored of it. You kinda hope that you’re not in that frame of mind with your album.”
This, and learning to deal with what Roo calls the ‘very large machinery’ of a major label, might just be counterbalanced by the chance to revisit the songs live following the album’s release. ‘We may be bored of hearing the songs, it’ll be the first time we’ll be playing the songs, so that’s OK.’
Read almost anything introducing Fixers, and one phrase will be visited time and time again: ‘psychedelic pop’. Often artists will balk at such brief descriptions of their life’s work, but Jack’s pretty happy with this one. ‘It’s a fair representation; whatever we make is always going to be influenced by Brian Wilson, and it’ll always be influenced by Van Dyke Parks, no matter how it sounds. Maybe we’ll use different production techniques, or maybe we’ll listen to different things, but we’ll always have certain fundamentals. I’d also say experimenting is one, perhaps dance is, and then everything else around it is quite an ebb and flow, it comes in then shoots off.’
Pressed on whether there’s anything the band take as much from artistically as those examples that we might not expect, there are mumblings of ‘Japanese dance, but I guess people do know about that to a certain degree,’ then Jack settles. ‘George Gershwin. It’s just so intricate, yet it’s so simplistic to listen to. You can listen to it in a very linear way and have complete utter enjoyment. And yet he’s playing the same amount of notes that I’ve played in my entire life twice over in thirty seconds of one piece! I know a lot of people over-intellectualise music, but you don’t have to profess to understand it.’
Finally, what would make 2012 a successful year for Fixers? It’s quite simple, according to Jack: ‘2012 would be good if by the end of it we were a little less scared.’
Taken from the Winter 2011 issue of DIY, available now. For more details click here.