Review & Interview: Marcus Foster – Stanley Theatre, Liverpool

For those of you who are familiar with Marcus Foster, you will know that you certainly cannot accuse the man for a lack of passion. His fervent performances, along with his rough and gravelly voice offset by graceful lyrics, stay prominent in people’s memories long after they are witnessed. Having just finished a sell out tour supporting The Pierces, the release of his debut album last month and plans for a headline tour in November, this man is making a large mark on the English music scene, so I was very excited to catch his last performance of the tour in Liverpool.

As expected, his set was full of energy, passion and raw emotion. Having toured all over the country one might expect Marcus to be somewhat flagging. However the positive responses from the tour seem to have kept him going, “It’s been amazing, there have been some really good crowds and loads of people!” he tells us, without a hint of weariness evident.

This positivity has extended to Marcus’ debut album Nameless Path. Having teased us with an EP (Shadows Of The City) and numerous singles, he seems just as delighted as we are that it’s finally been released; “I’m pleased with it, it’s out, it exists and I’m happy with it!”

 You may have heard some of the tracks before, such as Shadows Of The City and Movement, “some of the songs are old songs and I just wanted to get them out there, you know, I was just like ‘go on…go!’And some of the songs are quite new, quite fresh, that we were still playing in the studio. There’s one tune where I just made up half the verse, as we were recording.” (For those of you wondering, this was the song Rushes and Reeds, not that you could tell!). Both Shadows of the City and Movement were on the set list for the evening and did not disappoint, showing off Marcus’ rare talent of making carefree shrieking and howling noises sound pretty good!

The free and liberating nature of the songs from the album are perhaps a result of the recording and writing process. Done over the course of about a month whilst living in Wales, it seemed a relaxed and easy going environment to be envied, “It was just a really nice mentality, where you just eat and drink and play. It was a really nice way of making an album…for me the record is a bit different because it’s just trying to go for it…it sounds like people having fun.”

I Was Broken and I Belong Here were also on the set list tonight. They emanate vulnerability and beauty, perhaps not expected from the jagged vocals. Set alongside the more inhibited, frantic songs such as Faint Stir of Madness and Shadows Of The City, there was a nice array of mellow tunes and more excitable ones. This variety is replicated within the album, as inspiration is drawn from icons such as Van Morrison, Ray Charles and his ultimate idol, Tom Waits…“He’s like my hero…I did this one gig once in Coventry and someone compared me to Ed Sheeran…which I wasn’t sure about! But yea Tom Waits is the king!”

Do not be mistaken in thinking that Mr Foster’s talents are confined to the singer-songwriter category however. Having studied sculpture at the Royal Academy Of Art and with interests in acting, we could be seeing him elsewhere than behind a guitar. Although sadly, despite the fact that he wrote a song for Robert Pattinson and has Kristen Stewart in his video for I Was Broken, he is not considering an acting career as a Twilight character…yet, as he told us with much sarcasm “Ha, yea I’m actually in the next film, I’m a werewolf!”

He has a very laid back, friendly vibe but with only six songs on the set list the evening, it just didn’t seem to last long enough! Nonetheless, the bar is set very high for his highly promising and exciting headline tour in November…a tour that really should not be missed.

Ellie Witt