Newcastle-hailing musician Liam Fender has unveiled the second taste from his forthcoming debut body of work, with compelling new single Don’t Follow Me Down. A decisive blend of uplifting arrangements, frosted synths and engaging melancholy, Fender’s sound is a full-bodied experience that shifts with his mood.
Following the release of his critically acclaimed debut single Love Will Conquer at the end of the last year, Don’t Follow Me Down is subtle, yet powerful and takes the listener on a journey as he dreams of escape. Of the new tune Fender says “If Love Will Conquer was a call to arms to come together in turbulent times and embrace optimism, then be assured that Don’t Follow Me Down is no such continuation. Don’t let it’s cheery “millennial whoop” con you otherwise. This is a song about total despair.” And he’s right, it’s hard not to “oooh oooh” along to its rising chorus, while feeling equally heartbroken.
Lending a poignant air to the weight of Fender’s lyrical wordplay, the music video for Don’t Follow Me Down was shot in his hometown of North Shields on Tynemouth beach. The 37-year-old adds “The video portrays the struggle lot of us go through on a daily basis. The idea that we all at times put on a front. Wearing a mask to disguise the torment within. The despair of feeling stuck in a rut, playing out the same meaningless tasks day in day out. Acting brash to distract from vulnerability. Misreading people in a state of paranoia and a perceived sense of persecution whilst often failing to see that others are wearing the same mask. However, through friendship and the ability to open up, you discover that you’ve allowed your intuition to be sabotaged and the dark reality you’ve created is actually very far from the truth.”
Check out the Sam Gannie-directed video for Don’t Follow Me Down below:
A lifelong musician finally stepping out, Fender is a musical underdog and living proof that music truly can be a calling he says “I haven’t chosen to do this, it’s just in my DNA.” If you’ve joined the dots between Liam’s surname and his place of birth you may think he’s onto something with his point about DNA. Either way his earthy, honest and optimistic songs showcase an artist more than capable of standing on his own two feet, with his latest singles just a small taste of what’s to come.
Mining from a rich seam of artists like Richard Hawley, Nick Cave, Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen and John Martyn alongside the heritage of Newcastle history that’s scattered behind him; Liam Fender’s music is genuine, intuitive, articulate and interesting, much like the man behind the music and a clear demonstration of why he was such a profound influence to that younger brother that might be headlining Reading & Leeds Festivals later this summer. Fender describes his music as post-industrial romance. “My music’s deeply rooted in where I’m from: it comes from a real place,” he adds. “There’s a distinct sense of a bygone era, but in all that you find real people, real voices and real stories.”
Liam Fender is set release more music throughout 2023 and will be stepping out on tour and performing at UK festivals this summer, so keep your eyes peeled for more news!