On October 27, 2023, the indie-pop band FIZZ released their debut album, “The Secret to Life.”
The four members of FIZZ, dodie, Orla Gartland, Greta Isaac, and Martin Luke Brown, are each talented musicians with successful solo careers and a nearly decade-long friendship with one another. The four friends initially decided to create together in December 2021, and then again in the summer of 2022. Originally, there was no concrete intention to create a band. Brown recounts how they simply just went into the studio without any plans.
“It was a lot of capturing live performance,” added Gartland. “What this album celebrates and feels very central to FIZZ [is] live performance and energy and capturing moments.”
The idea of capturing authentic and genuine moments of the joy of being together is central to the group’s creative voice. The creation of the band FIZZ was partly a response to pressures to create in the group members’ solo careers. In a sense, the band’s creative process of making music out of sheer joy and excitement is a grounding practice that gives the members an opportunity to make music without overthinking.
“We all like music so much, and we love each other so much,” said dodie. “What came out was
this maximalist whirlwind of music.”
“Maximalist” is certainly the correct word to describe the group’s aesthetic, seen through their Instagram, album cover, and photos, which are brightly colored, vibrant, and at times even nonsensical, bizarre, or hilarious. The band’s vibe is self-described as a hodge-podge of media and characters they enjoy, from The Wizard of Oz, to Willy Wonka, to a Tim Burton film; it is joyfully exaggerated, “with a twinge of Uncanny Valley,” in Isaac’s words. Ultimately, like their music, the group’s atmosphere is an amalgamation of everything they know to be silly and beautiful, all rolled into one.
The first song the group completed together and the first song to be released as a single was “High In Brighton.” In general, the songs on the album feature either one person at the forefront, or a song in a completely collaborative effort, though the primary aim of the group was to work as a collective, with no front person. Their new album follows in a similar direction, featuring a range of songs that go from an uproar of musical maximalism about the joy of togetherness and living loudly to quiet, pensive songs about love and vulnerability.
Throughout the album, the overarching theme is indulgence and feeling grounded in creating with one another, which is true to form of the band’s creation process.
When asked about the song that they were most excited for people to hear and to perform live, each member’s enthusiastic response was “The Grand Finale,” which Brown described as nearly “six minutes of indulgence” and the band’s “‘Bohemian Rhapsody.” The song features everything each of the group members bring to the table, musically, lyrically, and physically.
The title “The Secret to Life” is supposed to be vindictive of the group’s emotional and playful exploration in the album, but the indiscreet conclusion of what the “Secret to Life” could possibly be is clearly the group’s friendship, which has weathered through time. Despite having known one another for so long, each member of the group has shared that they are still learning new things about themselves and their friendship as they continue to create together.
“I have learned to be loud in every way,” said dodie, whose solo tracks are typically characterized by quiet vocals and technical instrumentals. “Learning to be more carefree is so valuable.”
Isaac also expressed similar sentiments.
“The range in the album bounces from…giddy [to] tactilely vulnerable,” said Isaac. “That’s what ten years of friendship is. That’s what being in your twenties is.”
Listen to their latest music HERE