Meet Fliiis, originally from Stoke, now residing in Manchester, they’ve rebranded themselves, making shimmering indie pop. We’ve gone and persuaded them to play our monthly #FutureCuts show at The Finsbury, London later this month as well, so we figured we best have a chat with them about all things cats, names, sound and tattoos.
Hey! For those who haven’t listened to you yet, how would you describe your sound?
Dan – Sexy. I think we make music to have sex to, and music to listen to whilst you’re regretting it after. If you’re listening to us for the first time, make sure you’re ready for a rollercoaster of emotions.
Jarred – Electronic but not as electronic as deep house.
How did you come to be in a band together/how did you get into music?
Dan – We met over 5 years ago through mutual friends and started playing music together pretty much straight away in previous bands. FLIIIS came about purely through jamming and writing our first single ‘Feel It’ just over a year ago. I personally got into music because of my parents. They surrounded me with such a wealth of music and I fell in love with sounds that muster emotion as a child. Also, I remember going to my first ever gig at about 6 years old, it was The Levellers. I remember walking out after and saying to my parents ‘that’s all I want to do’, so I started doing it.
Jarred – A lot of my family are musicians, specifically drummers, so it was instilled into me from an early age. I didn’t really have another path to take.
What’s the reasoning behind the name Fliiis?
Dan – We were trying to think of a name for the project after writing Feel It and I was on the phone to Jarred. He was in his car. We couldn’t come up with anything and then I just heard ‘arghhhh flies man’ because one flew into his head, and it just sort of stuck. The spelling is down to interpretation. What do you guys think?
Your new single ‘Venice’ has recently been released, for those who haven’t listened to it, what can they expect?
Dan – I’d probably say sexy again! It’s got a real groove to it, but lyrically it’s something you can relate to if you’ve ever been screwed over by a close friend or whoever. Oh, and expect to dance.
Jarred – Don’t forget those dirty guitar riffs and slamming drums!
What drove the decision for ‘Venice’ to be released as a single?
Jarred – it’s different to our previous singles. Especially structurally. We wanted to show a different side to us because we’re pretty excessive when it comes to our ‘sound’.
Dan – Yeah man, 100%. In this day and age everyone wants to sound like The 1975 or whatever’s popular on the radio and it’s kinda boring. Like, playing it safe, we’re not about that. If everyone hates us then at least we can say we’ve been who we really are and created something honest and special. Venice is so different to a conventional single and we thought ‘if no one likes it and it ruins our career then at least we’ll go out with our heads held high’. Our next single’s a 30 minute long Jazz instrumental, so let’s see how that goes.
It’s recently been BBC Introducing’s record of the week, how did that feel?
Jarred – Awesome, man. It’s so nice that BBC Introducing are supporting us. It’s heart warming.
What/who influences/inspirations would you say play a part in the creation of your music?
Dan – Life, man. We listen to so much music and that does influence us, but, for me specifically, I’m driven by a want to hear something that reflects my feelings. Whether that be chaotic instrumentals or soft vocals or whatever. There’s a lot of things that influence the music we make, but the main inspiration is life and everything in it. How I feel at the time has a huge impact on the song writing process and that’s why I can honestly say our music is grounded in something real. I’m not sure if that makes sense, but yeah, that’s such a hard question to answer.
Jarred – 80’s electro and 70’s funk are big influences for us musically, too. We’re just a big fan of music that pushed boundaries in its day and that informs what we do a lot.
Explain the cats on the artwork?
Dan – We love cats. That’s pretty much the reason!
You’re playing Future Cuts for us at the end of the month, what can people expect from your set there?
Jarred – Energy.
Dan – And grinding. We wanna see you all getting down.
You have a pretty big UK tour aside from that, how’s it going so far?
Dan – Really good. The reception so far has been overwhelming. People have really invested in us and it’s so nice to feel that love we’ve put into our music being reciprocated by others. The people we’ve met are awesome too and we’ve only played 5 shows! It’s just been really good so far and we’re hoping it continues in the same vein.
You’re doing a ‘draw us a tattoo’ competition, who’s idea was that, how have submissions been so far?
Jarred – That was Dan’s idea. He has a habit of getting us into some pretty sticky situations so I guess this isn’t any different!
Dan – Yeah, I just thought ‘why not?’. That’s the attitude that gets us in to trouble all the time but it’s cool because I guess things are never boring.
If you could design a tattoo for anyone at all who would it be and why?
Jarred – if it were possible to tattoo animals I’d design one for our cat, Fliii. She’s our mascot.
Dan – I’d do one for Jarred. It’d be a tattoo of my face on his arse.
What’s next for Fliiis?
Jarred – Finish the tour, drop a few more singles and run for Prime Minister.
Dan – We’ll probably not make it to the end of this tour alive at the rate we’re going so I’ll hold off on making any plans.