Memory In Plant’s frontman Chen Firsel has just released his latest EP, Sugarrush. All the tracks were written each in just a few sessions, once every week or two by help from the Hila Ruach. After a few live shows, Chen then recorded the songs that felt complete in his apartment in Tel-Aviv. Tomatrax caught up with Chen to discuss his music.
You wrote each song over a few sessions, what was the reason for this approach?
I decided this approach out of the necessary.
After my first ep “SCNDS” I was in non solo work with Memory in plant for almost 2 years and kind of put my solo work aside.
After leaving memory in plant I wanted to go back to writing recording and producing my music but was finding it dificult.
After making a few changes in my life I I found a kind of mentor in Hila Ruach, who helped me dive back in to songwriting. We met every couple of weeks and after every session I came back with more songs.
After a while I felt confident enough to continue the search on my own.
Was it hard to get the songs right in such a short time?
I guess. Maybe challenging is more the word than hard.
it took my a while to find a different work method.
My previous experiences with my solo work consisted of going with my flow and feelings as the microphone was on. Much more room for improvisation.
In Sugarush I was only siting with a guitar and finding melodies and harmonies.
As for the lyrics, they came to a full circle after I have preformed the songs I few times in a couple of acoustic shows in Tel-Aviv.
What made you pick ‘Sugarush’ as the title track/single from your EP?
‘Sugabrush’ came as the first word in the lyrics of the Single, but after a while I noticed that its a good title for an ep as well. The title was completed before I knew how many songs or even what songs would be on the EP.
What was the inspiration behind the EP’s cover?
The art was done by Sarai Darmon, who as also done the great cover art for SCNDS and all the art for Memory in plant.
Sarai said “Like everything I do, I didn’t really plan it up front. I tried some tricks with photos I took of Chen until I found something I liked and than developed the idea. It was important for me that it would fit the atmosphere of the EP. I think the colors made it feel right more than anything”.
You also played with Memory In Plant, how does performing solo compare to being in a band?
To be perfectly honest, memory never actually preformed live.
I think the difference would have been amazingly unforeseeable.
You recorded the songs you felt were complete, are there any plans with the songs that didn’t feel complete?
Not for the close future.
What is the music scene like in Tel-Aviv?
The music scene in TA is wide and small. Every night there are more than a few shows, but still once in a while a cool venue will close.
There are talented people in Tel-Aviv that make great music and in Israel in general.
Do you ever listen to your own music?ֿ
What other music do you listen to?
I really like Guerilla Toss at the moment, “All them witches” and Alva Noto.
Now that the EP is out what do you plan on doing next?
I’m working on a new musical project with Amo (Memory in plant, Syndrome, dag is a dj) called “O.ccoult”.
It is a minimalistic electronic project that has been building up for the last few months.
I’m also working on a live show that will consist of songs from the 2 eps and the O.Ccoult project.
Check out Chen Firsel’s Facebook page to find out more!