Abi Foster, Andy Lowe – Hear Me | Modern Lovesick Disco
Multi-instrumentalist and producer from Shrewsbury, Andy Lowe, recently released an 80s disco-pop single called “Hear Me” featuring vocalist Abi Foster. He’s been releasing experimental pop and and electronic music since 2019 and also is the co-producer of the well-received Auki podcast.
The song opens with a catchy riff on electric guitar and plucked synths playing the same melody. It has a sound similar to 80s disco music with a contemporary touch right from the start. Foster’s bright and melodious voice complements lovesick lyrics bringing a nostalgic mood to the track.
Lowe, is known for using unique sounds in most of his tracks, but on “Hear Me”, there is a more synthesizer-fueled sound present. Foster, because of her natural tone and the way she sings with ease, at times sounds similar to Carly Rae Jepsen. I really liked how the chorus topline blends in with the instruments and lush harmonies. In addition, “Hear Me” also features a bridge section with melodic vocal chops combined with an acoustic guitar progression and big drum rhythm.
A collaboration between two or more artists always inspires fresh and interesting ideas. Foster and Lowe, together have fabricated an energetic yet slightly wistful track; they talk about it in the interview about their collaborative process. An anthem for lovesick pop-song lovers and avid disco listeners, “Hear Me” is one of Lowe’s many releases since 2019 and with it’s new and appealing sound, I’m sure it will attract a big audience. It was a privilege to get an interview with both the artists, here’s what they had to say!
1- Andy, you’ve used multiple bizarre samples in your previous releases, like the sounds of a freezer or a heartbeat. Have you used any unique sound on “Hear Me” and what inspired you to sample live sounds in the first place?
I love the unique character you get from found sounds, and how they create intriguing textures in a track. However, when it came to the production for “Hear Me” I was aiming for something fairly conventional and 80s-inspired, so the character of the sound comes from all the layers of different synthesisers. I’m fascinated by the sound design process and still learning a lot about it. YouTube is a great source of ideas and inspiration! Musicians like Andrew Huang first got me interested in the crazy world of sampling and sound design (he has videos where he produces music with samples from lego, balloons, pizza etc.)
2- What was the experience like for you both working together on “Hear Me”?
We wrote and produced most of the song during Covid lockdown, so it was a remote collaboration. We only had a few hours in the same room to record the vocals towards the end, the rest of the process involved a lot of emails flying around! I actually enjoy that way of working because I need time to generate ideas by myself before sharing them. Abi wrote the chorus first – we had the melody and lyrics and the rest of the song grew from there. We had a clear idea of what we were trying to achieve which really helped when making decisions about the creative direction of the track.
3- The track at it’s core is an exciting synth-pop anthem with elements from disco music as well. Who were your primary influences when writing this track?
The whole idea for the song came because I was listening to Abi’s music and thought her voice had a similar sound to Lauren Mayberry from CHVRCHES. I suggested to Abi that we collaborate on something in their style, which then guided the whole process. I love that 80s-infused sound which combines guitars with retro synths and big drums, but it also has contemporary elements like vocal chops, which are pretty ubiquitous in pop music now. The tone and character of the guitar parts was definitely influenced by a particular Echosmith song – “Cool Kids”.
4- What does “Hear Me” mean for you and what would you like your listeners to take away from it?
The theme of the song is communication breakdown. We’ve all been in situations where the person we’re talking to just isn’t listening to what we’re saying. They’re missing the point, or trying to shut down the conversation without addressing it. The song expresses the anger and frustration of being in that situation, but at the same time it has an upbeat energy. I’d hope that people can connect with the emotion of the song, but feel better after listening to it. Maybe it could even help people put their feelings into words?
5- The tracks’ production is very in-depth and well executed. How long did it take to record/produce/mix/master “Hear Me”?
Thank you! The whole process took about four months. It was slow because we were working in a disjointed way, but that gave me time to experiment with sounds and make sure I was happy with all the decisions. We made sure that the process included getting some independent feedback along the way. Bringing in a fresh set of ears is invaluable. 6- In three years, you’ve released multiple EPs, and your fanbase is growing every day! What can we expect from your collaborative duo in the future?“Hear Me” was a real departure for both of us! Abi has previously released acoustic singer-songwriter material while I’ve worked on instrumental electronica. So who knows what will happen next? I’m really drawn to the lofi beats sound, and Abi is constantly writing songs. Whether we work together again or not, there’ll definitely be more to hear from both of us.