It’s been an exciting year for Fred V & Grafix. Not only have they written an album but they’ve also devised and developed their own live show. And it all culminates in one massive release/live show explosion next month.
The album Cinematic Party Music drops on September 29, with their next single – which they describe as having a Bon Iver style vocal sung by Fred! – dropping on September 8. Live-wise their first full live show takes place at Lockdown Festival on September 1 and they’ll be headlining Hospitality In The Park on September 23.
But before all that, some of us had a sneak peak at their live show material earlier this week as Fred and Josh held a private show with golden tickets for friends, family and fans. Taking place in their hometown of Bristol, the intimate event not only gave people an excuse to party on a Tuesday and pretend it was acceptable, but it allowed Frafix to oil the motors of their live show in preparation for a busy winter schedule.
Playing to a lively crowd consisting of less than 200 people, the pair did not disappoint with a performance that was every bit euphoric and magical as anticipated. From Fred V blasting out seamless vocals at the front of the stage, to Grafix expertly plucking the guitar, it was a unique experience that will live long in the memories for all of those attending.
We spoke to Fred and Josh after the show to gather a few more details to keep us happy before the album launch and full live tour this winter.
Congratulations on the show! Were you nervous?
Grafix: It’s funny because before we started Fred was like ‘I’m not nervous.’ For me, I knew what we had rehearsed and I knew what we were playing, but it was seeing people’s reaction to it – that’s what I was nervous about…
Fred V: I’ve never felt that nervous before a show for like a decade. It hit me as soon as we walked through the crowd to get to the stage. Because the Louisiana is a tiny venue we had to go straight through the middle of everyone. As soon as we were getting on stage and everyone was cheering, I then had to tune my guitar and it wasn’t working properly so I was like fuck…fuck…fuck.
Grafix: We’ve been to our fair share of gigs and the small ones are always great. Even when you’re DJing small gigs are amazing. Especially for a show where people are all coming here to watch us do this, so we kind of have that safety net of knowing they all want to be there. So you’re hoping most of them aren’t going to be like ‘fuck you, you suck!
Fred V: Yeah when we got on stage and everyone was cheering, it was like – ah okay everyone in the room is on our team and isn’t going to tell us to take our guitars away and play some real drum and bass! We will likely have our fair share of bottles of piss thrown at us in good time, we don’t doubt that.
How long have you been preparing and rehearsing?
Grafix: It’s weird because you work on it for ages but you don’t actually do any performing. We spent a long time sat with John, our creative director and sound tech, just figuring out how to do it. We knew from the start we wanted to perform just the two of us, not a full band with four backing singers and a triangle player. We wanted to do as much as we could ourselves without having a drummer.
Fred V: It’s crazy because all I want to do is improve the live set now, but we need to make music…we are mad busy at the moment because the live show is so time consuming with all the practicing, but at the same time we also need to be coming up with new ideas, so yeah I don’t really have any friends…apart from Josh.
Grafix: It was only in the last month we started actually practicing the tracks. We didn’t get together for band practice before because we were working out our own parts. Fred does a lot of vocals and keys, so there will be about ten different synth sounds he needs to programme in.
Fred V: The next step for us is to watch tonight’s set back and take the best bits and add more to it for the full live shows.
Is there a particular live date that sticks out for you?
Grafix: Hospitality in The Park. That’s when everything has to be perfect.
As far as everyone who was present on Tuesday is concerned, it’s already there. If you get a chance to check Fred V & Grafix’s live show, do it as soon as you can….
Sept 1: Lockdown Festival: Info & Tickets
Sept 23: Hospitality In The Park: Info & Tickets