Fiction Plane have been gaining a fair amount of steam in recent years, with ever more successful releases coming from the band. Left Side of The Brain really broke the band into a mainstream market in Europe, and Paradiso just enhanced that to even greater proportions. Now, with their success at Glastonbury and with Sparks looming overhead, the tour dates are coming thick and fast. The Plane doesn't even have chance to touch the ground before it must take off again, it may seem.
Seton Daunt, guitarist of Fiction Plane, had managed to take a minute or two out of the band's heavy touring schedual to answer a few questions on how the band is right now, about the album and about up-and-coming plans.
UG: Hi Seton, how's things within Fiction Plane right now? You guys are pretty busy, after all.
Seton: Hello Anthony, Things are great right now. We are on tour in France and having a great time playing the new record, Sparks.
How did the band actually come to form? What inspired various changed through the band's history?
10 years ago I joined Joe in band called Santas Boyfriends. A few years later we were incredibly lucky to find Pete, our drummer, who drove 15 hours to audition for us in NY. Around 5 years ago the original bass player left and we became a three piece and never looked back.
Fiction Plane celebrated fair success with 'Left Side of The Brain' and its partner DVD, 'Paradiso'. Considering that success, did you find it a little daunting when recording 'Sparks'?
Tried not to think about it really!
What's been the influences behind 'Sparks'?
"Touring for 2 years definitely played a big part in the sound. This is the first record that was done purely as a collaboration."
Touring for 2 years definitely played a big part in the sound. This is the first record that was done purely as a collaboration.
Your sound as an individual, as well as a band, has evolved immensely since 'Everything Will Never Be Ok'. Do you prefer to play your newer material or your 'classic' stuff?
Sadly we never really play anything from "Everything Will Never Be OK" because it was done as four guys. Its difficult to pull that off now. I still enjoy playing some of the songs from "Left Side of the Brain" though.
What do you guys love to play live at the moment? Anything off the new album that stands out?
Tommy is becoming very popular live and as the guitarist, I love playing it.
I've just been watching the music video for the new single ('Out of My Face'). Was that a fun experience to film? Even though it seems like Joe (Sumner - FP Frontman) got to do most of the exciting scenes!
It was a great experience and to be honest, I'm relieved that Joe did all the acting. I'm not really up for that and was totally comfortable just being in the performance parts. That's where I feel at home.
Who influences or inspires you guys as musicians/writers?
So many people. Right now for me personally I'd have to say Nick Cave/Grinderman, Isobel Campbell and Mark Campbell, and Radiohead.
Fiction Plane are quite popular in Europe - France, Germany etc.. Where do you particularly like touring? Do you wish you were more popular in the UK/USA?
I love playing in France and Holland, and yes we wish we were bigger in the UK and the US. We're working on it...
Are there any urges to partake in proper tours of the UK/USA?
Yes, and again we are working on that. Hopefully for 2011.
Obviously, having Joe in the band meant a somewhat close connection to The Police, but how did it feel to actually tour with them in 2008? Had you already been a fan of the band?
The Police fill some of my earliest musical memories and so it was amazing to get to do so many shows with them. It was one of the greatest things I have ever had the priveledge of doing and I loved every moment. Stade de france was the real stand out night for me. I will never forget looking at 80,000 in the dark and see them go nuts for the support band. Thank you again Paris!
Fiction Plane have also toured with Snoop Dogg - an odd combination! What was that like, considering the difference in music etc.?
It was insane. The most fun tour I have ever done by far. We were lucky enough to be allowed to share the tour bus with the snoop crew who have all since become friends. The tour was actually really fun and we really did our best to entertain a very varied audience.
What attracted you to your current equipment set-up? I noticed you use Telecasters a lot.
"We wish we were bigger in the UK and the US. We're working on it."
I adore the Telecaster. It's so simple and solid. The sound cuts through and makes you rely on getting your sound out of your hands. I also love the combo of a tele with a Vox AC30. As for pedals, if I had to strip it right down I'd just use a eternity love pedal, a whammy and a memory lane delay.
Seton, you've had some success as a session player. What have you most enjoyed playing on? Is it something that you intend to do cordially, even with the rising demand around Fiction Plane?
I have always felt really lucky to have sessions going on on the side. Its not something Ive ever really hussled at. More like I have some friends who over the years have become bigger and bigger as engineers and producers and ask me to come and hang out and play. I really enjoyed working with Kylie and and really happy with how Amy Macdonalds first record came out. Bob Clearmountain did an amazing mix and made the record sound great.
Have you any plans for side projects or anything?
Yes. I have a band called The Daunting. Working on finishing the record and putting it our next year. Totally different from Fiction Plane. Folk stuff really.
What do you see for the future of Fiction Plane? Are there any big plans on the horizon?
To continue touring as much as possible and then do another record. I hope that continues for decades. I love it.
Something I always ask; Have you any advice for musicians who are trying to get where you guys are today?
My advice would be to never have a plan B, because that makes it so much harder to give up.
And finally, for fun... If you could choose just one album and any one track to take with you to a desert island, to listen to for the rest of your days, what would they be?
Not Dark Yet by Bob Dylan.
Interview by Anthony Bentley
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