A Chat with Eilis Frawley (30.10.2020)

Eilis Frawley had us captivated with her sound when she released ‘Darkest Truth‘. If her balladic soundscape had you wishing for more, you will love her new EP Adult Life. Looking at a range of hard hitting topics through a relatable lens and poetry, the EP gives listeners and Frawley the chance to ask who they are and where they would like to go. We sat down with Eilis Frawley to talk about the EP, creating personal tracks, emotions and much more!

OSR: What first drew you to making your own music?

Frawley: I’ve been playing in bands for the last 8 years and wanted the challenge of creating something alone. I dreamt of a solo project on and off for the past few years but when I started working as a musician full time it really began. Working alone has a lot of advantages in terms of time commitment, decision making and touring.

OSR: Is there a theme or backstory for your new EP Adult Life?

Frawley: This EP I wrote during the first lockdown, I wrote daily and developed my technical (computer) skills further. I set a few challenges for myself for instrumentation, chord progressions, to write my first ‘chorus’ and to write about a fictional character (Louise) which set a great foundation to work within.

OSR: You use a combination of percussion rhythms and spoken word vocals. Was this the sound you always wanted or something that evolved over time?

Frawley: It’s been like that from the very beginning. First and foremost I’m a drummer and I certainly don’t want to lose that element. However, spoken word was totally new for me. I’m not a strong singer so it was a practical decision. Now I’m getting referred to all these great spoken word artists I never knew existed, it’s a whole new world for me.

OSR: What was your creative process for the EP?

Frawley: Often I have thoughts or a few words that I think sound interesting, so I note them down. When it comes to writing the lyrics I pick and choose what might go together, it’s like a collage for words. Often drum beats come to me in hectic times, the five minutes between teaching drums or the five minutes before a band rehearsal. Piecing it all together is a fully involved process, this time it took 4 weeks to write the EP and I think in those 4 weeks I never really stopped thinking about it.

OSR: Many of the tracks on Adult Life are based on your own experiences. How difficult was it to create these personal songs?

Frawley: It’s like free therapy. Some of the most personal ones entered into a world of their own where I focused almost entirely on the composition and not the story. Releasing them, however, is a different story, that’s petrifying.

OSR: Did you find that certain songs were easier or harder to write than others?

Frawley: Most certainly. I had a hard time with ‘Human’. I added and took away so many layers, it felt so exposed but after a number of months, I think its minimalist instrumentation is a strong point. ‘Stats’ was on the other end of the scale, very easy to put together, I had so much fun making this dance track with such a strong topic.

Eilis Frawley

OSR: If people could feel one emotion while listening to the EP, what would you like that to be and why?

Frawley: Oh, that’s a hard one! I’m not sure of one true emotion but I want to leave everyone feeling reflected on whatever emotions it brings out. I hope people can identify with the spoken word. They’re my stories but many people have and will experience similar things.

OSR: What is the biggest hurdle you have overcome in your music career so far?

Frawley: The jump to being a full-time musician was a pretty scary one, but other than that I would say time management. I’m playing almost every day with various projects which at peak times can be really busy. Alongside playing you have to basically run a business, this I’m still working out. No-one told me it was going to be like this!

OSR: Is there a song on the EP that holds a special place in your heart?

Frawley: ‘Louise’, it’s a real departure to my previous style. It was my first attempt to write about someone else and I’m really happy with the vibe and overall structure. ‘Broken Ankles’ is a close second, a big F**k you to the Australian government felt good.

OSR: What else do you have planned for the next 12 months?

Frawley: We just entered a second lockdown, so I expect a lot of time in my room making tracks. I’m slowly working towards an album, but before I dive completely in I’d like to change a few things to make my set-up more professional and refine a few skills. Normally I’d mention tours and shows but that seems like a lifetime ago now, maybe within 12 months they’ll come back.

Thanks to Eilis Frawley for chatting with us! You can find more about her on her website, Facebook, Instagram, Bandcamp and Spotify.

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