Q&A With The Last of the Fallen Angels Frontman: Conrad McQueen
Formed in the lockdown of May 2020, The Last of the Fallen Angels features CMQ and Victoria O of AXLS, along with Mark D of Sapien Trace. This new project was a way of keeping creative during lockdown and none of the 3 singers met during the writing or making of the songs. "Phase IV" is the first of 3 planned singles produced by music legend Simon Ellis. Simon is better known for mainstream pop (Spice Girls, Westlife, Britney Spears and he wrote Don't Stop Movin' for S Club 7) but when he heard CMQ's dark electro demos, he was full of ideas and keen to get involved. The next singles will be released over the coming months. We catch up with vocalist and instrumentalist Conrad McQueen on the back of their recent single 'Phase IV.'
So Conrad, tell us about this new project!
The Last of the Fallen Angels started out as something to keep creative and be experimental in lockdown. I took the opportunity to work with singers from Manchester to Berlin, New Jersey to Newcastle ll remotely via email, messenger and Dropbox.
Tell us about your latest single Phase IV.
I asked Mark D (Sapien Trace) to help me finish a song I’d started and Victoria O (AXLS) to add vocals too. It started as a bit of fun with 3 voices, piano and echo dub style drums and has taken off incredibly quickly. Award winner Simon Ellis (Spice Girls, Britney, S Club 7) loved the sound and wanted to produce it and music legend Mike Bennett (The Fall, Ian Brown, The Specials) was so impressed with what he heard, he has released it on his Paraffin Alien label!
Wow, that's a crazy process. So, what's the sound we can expect from The Last of the Fallen Angels?
I wanted to combine my love of dark downtempo ambient music like Massive Attack with the cinematic heavenly music of Cocteau Twins and Sigur Ros.
What is the first record you bought?
When I could afford to buy CDs, I remember buying Tricky’s debut “Maxinequaye” because you just needed that CD quality that cassettes just couldn’t provide! It’s still one of my favourite LPs to this day.
If you had to describe your music in three words, what would they be?
Ambient, downtempo, heavenly, dark- sorry that’s 4!!
What sort of circumstances or events leads to you create music?
I’m always bursting with ideas and anything can inspire a song. A phrase I hear, a line from a song or a feeling inspired by a film or TV show.
What is your idea of your perfect gig, if money was no object - describe your dream show!
I saw Kraftwerk at the Sage Gateshead playing live with 3D visuals and that was incredible, so it would be great to push the boundaries with state of the art visuals and make an amazing multimedia show. If money is no object then it would have to be in an awe-inspiring location like Berlin, Paris or New York just as the sun is setting.
What music did you listen to growing up and who inspires your musically now?
I remember going through my Mum’s record collection and being blown away by Bob Dylan and Charlie Parker. More recently I’m listening to LCD Soundsystem, The National, This Is The Kit and there’s a German TV show called “Dark” which has inspired a few ideas.
So, what can we expect from The Last of the Fallen Angels in the coming future?
Mark, Victoria and I are doing a live stream gig for We Are Manchester this weekend. Recently LOTFA has been invited to perform at a Reykjavik festival - probably by live stream if the COVID situation stays the same. Watch this space for more details!
There are collaborations with other singers in the pipeline too. Simon Ellis has just finished producing a song for me with a beautiful singer from New Jersey. There’s a string quartet on there too. It’s heavenly!
Check out The Last of the Fallen Angels' recent single 'Phase IV' on Spotify HERE
Find The Last of the Fallen Angels on Facebook HERE