NHC MUSIC Chats To 100 Fables

Foreword from Chrissy Mullen - 100 Fables are a band who have been on a number of people’s lips over the last year. From personal experience, they’re one of the most accomplished acts around at the moment and have one of the best and most professional live performances of any act in their current peer group. They’re a definite must see for any fans of rock, pop, electro, 80s or just any music that has happiness infused through it. 

With what many feel is the record industry dropping the ball in respect of supporting new talent, and taking into consideration that the alternative is trying to grab public attention from the global sized pool that is the internet, how does it feel to be a band living in these times?

Lyndsey: To be honest I just don’t think about it. I’m forever the optimist. I feel talent still outweighs anything else and if you show you are a connected band with great songs, a good image, an online presence and show how hard you are working that will be seen and invested in by the right person. We always try to push ourselves and whenever we feel comfortable we know that’s a warning sign to get creative again and push the boundaries. For example, we enjoy making covers and putting our own stamps on others songs in between single releases and recently we’ve started to create one off pieces that will dress the stage during our upcoming shows.

Erin: It's always a challenge to stand out when every band is using social media as a platform, but I feel that we consistently keep our 100 Fables world exciting and intriguing on social media that it is always grabbing people's attention and if we keep going in this direction we will go far with it.

Chris: Honestly, I don’t personally bother with any of that kind of stuff. I understand the importance of it living in a generation where everyone spends so much time on social media but I think it’s important not to get too caught up in it.

Harris: Social media is something everyone is using. Personally, I wouldn’t use it to gauge our ‘success’ in the music industry. I think it is important to follow your gut, don’t allow this instant feedback from social media to dictate your music. Find inspiration, personalize it – find your sound and keep moving forward.

I don’t think anyone would dispute that you would be described as a band to watch out for, but just to get to this stage takes a great deal of work. Is the day in the life of 100 Fables just 100% band work and if so how important is it to stop and take stock every once in a while?

Lyndsey: We all work full time jobs as well as the band so we have to constantly check in and make sure we’re doing as much as we can for the band. It’s like having two full time jobs at once but when one of them is your absolute passion it’s worth the effort. Every week is different but we always see each other at least twice (out with gigs) to rehearse, work on new material or plan our next venture.

Harris: We are very lucky to have such a great team around us, working hard together but we do so in a fun manner. Sometimes it’s important to take a step back but naturally we just enjoy playing together.

The video for Metropolis was very professionally done. Who did you work with on it, and how useful was it as a promotional tool?

Lyndsey: Our producer and co-writer Mark McMurtrie filmed it all in my living room. It was mental. My step-dad built us a massive 14 part wooden screen that we bolted together to drape green material from and that was the background for the video. Mark has 3 lights and his own camera and that’s all we used to create Metropolis. DIY at it’s finest! We’re extremely lucky to have Mark on our team. During the filming, we managed to blow 2 of the 3 bulbs and slightly melt the camera… We have a great reception for the video as well as the single. We wanted to capture our personalities and style so it’s a perfect tool to showcase that.

Chris: The video was done with our producer I Am Leask. It’s awesome to hear how professionally done people think it was because we know the reality of where and how it was done… Ha. It was definitely a DIY video but thanks to our producer it looks amazing. As a promotional tool, it definitely helped show the world who 100 Fables really are as it was the first video with the final line up. I also feel it generated a lot of buzz about us which, well… can only be good right?

Harris: The Metropolis music video was fun! We had some homemade green screens, we had some morph suits, we had some costume changes. I wish we shot a ‘behind the scenes’ video! I think it’s nice to have a music video, a visual for people to relate to when listening to our music… perhaps in some ways its more engaging.

It was a surprise to see you land the support for the reformed Bay City Rollers for their sold-out gig at the legendary Barrowland in Glasgow. Surprise as in most people wouldn’t naturally have a Bay City Rollers and 100 Fables release sitting next each other in their record collection, so how did that come about?

Lyndsey: We would never turn down a chance to play the Barra’s! The promoters at Regular Music got in touch and asked to book us for the gig and naturally we jumped at the chance. They’d never seen us play live before and, as we came back to our dressing room after our set, they were waiting there for us which was lovely. They congratulated us on our performance and wished they’d booked us for more of the gigs which was a massive high for us a band who’d only properly been together for 2 months by that point.

Harris: It was cool to be asked to play such an awesome venue! With a band like the ‘Bay City Rollers’ the crowd were electric, to our surprise as we were not sure what to expect with our music being so different.

Did you enjoy the experience?

Lyndsey: It. Was. Amazing. I was really worried how the crowd would react. Not exactly our usual audience. I thought we’d either be boo’d off the stage cause they only wanted to see the BCR’s or they’d just stand there expressionless. We went out there and gave our best show and wow was I wrong. They were screaming, shouting and loving it, I even saw a couple of walking sticks in the air I’m not even joking! We certainly made a load of new fans from it and had awesome messages and feedback. It was our first taste of the big stage and we are dying to get back there.

Erin: I loved it to pieces. I’m still not over it

Playing a sold-out show in an iconic venue like the ‘Barras’ must give you a career benchmark that you aspire to repeating. In the morning after the night before were you all planning how you could get back there, or even take it to the next level?

Lyndsey: We were still totally buzzing and our next gig was supporting Deacon Blue at Stonehaven’s Open Air in the Square so we definitely were getting a taste of the life and career we could have. I’m so thankful for the people who have believed in us and given us the chances we’ve had. I hope they can see all the hard work we’re doing and would give us more chances in the future. We take each day as it comes and just focus on ourselves. Pushing the limits and boundaries that society and the industry have created.

Erin: It was an unbelievable experience and to do it again supporting more legends - maybe ones of our generation? - would be incredible.

Chris: It definitely did, what was crazy at the time was it was only my third (I think) show with 100 Fables so I was thrown right in the deep end but I loved every second of it. I think I speak for everyone when I say it’s a venue we want to sell out ourselves in the near future.

Harris: Having had a taste of the ‘Barras’ I am eager to return! To headline such a venue would be a true benchmark in our journey together. For now, we keep writing some music, we keep playing our songs – baby steps.

So, what do you perceive as being the next level?

Lyndsey: We’re working on building our fan base and ideally in a year be able to do a UK tour that would be a sell out. That’s definitely a goal. To get a support slot on a UK tour would be amazing as well. As I said I’m forever the optimist. We’re writing our debut album just now too so hopefully that’ll be another great tool to get us to the next stage of our journey.

Wildest dreams stuff, but what is it that resides in your heart for the band that you all might not want to articulate in case you jinx it?

Lyndsey: The bottom of my heart tingles every time we perform live and I truly believe as a full band we are on to something special. It’s the best feeling performing and writing with friends you love and respect. Every time we are reviewed they see us in different lights and different genres - I hope we’re breaking boundaries. I don’t think there’s anyone else out there like us and I truly believe we’ll be doing this successfully for the rest of our lives. Saying it out loud certainly doesn’t scare me that I’m jinxing it.

Erin: In my heart for the band I'd love for us to get radio play on all different channels and for the 100 Fables name to be everywhere and people that we don't even know who are just fans being excited for the chance to come and see us.

Chris: Well, saying would be jinxing it…

Harris: Wildest dreams?  To be hearing our songs being played on the radio in the car while on the way to the SSE Hydro for our headline show.

Is the band quite a unified force, or do you consider yourselves to have a leader, and if so then who is calling the shots?

Lyndsey: We definitely work best as a unit but everyone takes on their own roles. I tend to take the lead in organization and accounts so everyone will probably say me but I’m always the first to freak out and worry over the slightest thing. I’m also usually the most nervous before a gig but the gang know how to keep me cool.

Erin: I'd say Lyndsey is the leader, not cause she's a bossy bitch, but cause she's always moving us on up in the right direction!

Chris: Lyndsey definitely keeps us all in check but I think we all have our stronger points that come together. Well, I mean the drummer leads when we start the songs right?

Harris: Each component is vital. To continually inspire each other is important. We all realize our roles in the band – but Lyndsey keeps us all in line.

Who is the most driven of you all?

Lyndsey: I wouldn’t say anyone’s more driven than anyone else. We all went to lose the day jobs and be 100 Fables full time and we’re all committed to making that happen.

Chris: I think we’re all as motivated as each other. I mean everyone has their days when they just wanna stay on the couch but we all want this to succeed.

Harris: In this band there are no passengers, ambition is a mutual trait. We have a lot of fun together and it never feels like an effort to have us all in the same room.

How important is it to build up a grassroots level of support as opposed to the X Factor route?

Lyndsey: It’s a no brainer for us - grassroots wins hands down. We want real fans who will come to our gigs and truly like our music and support us. We’re not in it for a flicker of fame and then for it to fade within a year. Playing gigs and keeping active online is the best way to achieve a loyal fan base and that’s what every band dreams of.

Erin: It's important because we know we didn't get lucky and get on TV because of a show, we know we made it because we got what it takes to be genuinely great.

Harris: “One man and his dog” is a phrase commonly used. Each gig is just as important as the next – regardless of who is listening or attending. Having the opportunity to engage with a live audience, have fun with it and meet those who enjoy our music is rewarding in itself. Having to work hard for something usually inspires a deeper understanding and more appreciative values.

Thanks very much guys, and we look forward to following your journey.

100 Fables have a headline show at Audio Glasgow this Friday and you can get tickets below.