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Columbus band Fever Fever finds musical inspiration in nature

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Guitarist of the Columbus band Fever Fever, Wes Black, said the group seeks out ‘peaceful spots’ to connect with nature and write its music.  Credit: Courtesy of Kaitlin Dunn

Guitarist of the Columbus band Fever Fever, Wes Black, said the group seeks out ‘peaceful spots’ to connect with nature and write its music.
Credit: Courtesy of Kaitlin Dunn

In an attempt to shine light on local music, The Lantern’s“Columbus’ Own” is a weekly series that will profile a new Columbus band every week. 

Making music for Fever Fever is a lot like creating a soundtrack for a movie.

“Our music is inspired visually, so when we come in to write a scene, we’ll say, ‘Here’s the scene: Picture a field, and it’s dusk, and there’s a cabin in the field,’” Wes Black, guitarist of Fever Fever, said.

However, being inspired visually doesn’t mean the Columbus-based band takes everything in its sight into consideration. Black said the members gravitate toward the relationships they have with the world around them, including in nature and humanity for inspiration, which is also evident in several unplugged videos the band has on its YouTube channel.

“We have several videos that we did that is just at a cool place in nature, a peaceful spot, and it’s a really good example of how we connect with nature, how we write music to a scene,” Black said.

For one of the unplugged videos, “Clouds Catch Fire,” the band was at a retreat center on the Catskill Mountains in New York, when they were inspired by the view of the town below the mountains combined with the “killer sunset” to commemorate that moment in a song.

“We sat there in awe of this view and said, ‘How could we not write a song about this?’ So, we went around the building trying to find some instruments, and we found a kid’s guitar that somebody left behind, some sleigh bells and we had a drum with us, so we wrote a song and filmed a video right there,” Black said.

This is not a rare occurrence for the band.

When touring and performing outside of Columbus, the band members seek to spend a considerable amount of time outdoors to gather their thoughts and be at peace with nature.

“For a lot of us, music is definitely a way to find peace, a way to escape from the daily struggles of life, and I think nature’s a huge part of who we are as people,” Black said. “We get to travel for the music stuff and we always have some

time here and there. We try to leave early so when we get to a town a few hours early, we can explore. We’re always trying to find a cool park, a place to sit by a lake for a while, whatever we can do to just relax and enjoy.”

The band has played shows in the last two years in cities all over the East Coast and last spring, the band traveled to Austin, Texas, for the first time. Most of the shows Fever Fever performs involve other musicians, but the band has never explicitly toured with other musicians, and hopes to be able to do that in the near future.

Each member of Fever Fever has more than one musical role in the band. Vocalist Andrew Murfin plays the electric guitar and sometimes the drums and the percussion instruments, Black plays the electric guitar, bamboo flute and harmonium, bass player Vince Gaietto also plays the vibraphone, and drummer Zack Taylor does backup vocals from time to time.

Murfin and Black met while playing high school basketball together in Grove City and have been playing music together since 2007, but it wasn’t until later that the band started recording music. In 2011, Fever Fever started getting serious with its musical endeavors and pursuing record labels. The band is currently signed to Slospeak Records.

Fever Fever is owns different styles of music while also trying to invoke meaning into its music, according to Black.

“The way we play these songs is more alternative as we try to write in a very orchestrated way where we don’t have parts, where we’re just strumming the guitar for no reason,” Black said. “A lot of our parts are more articulate than that and have more dynamic that plays off the other guys in the band, but when we’re doing the acoustic shows, it’s more of a folk style.”

Fever Fever has fans of all ages, as Black has witnessed from the “older, hippie crowd” and the “young, hipster crowd” that attend its shows.

“There’s a lot of different scenes in Columbus and different circles of people. Sometimes, we play an acoustic show, and an acoustic show can be enjoyed by anybody,” Black said. “We played in front of a group of people who were in their 70s or 80s and they still loved our music.”

Alaina Clark, a third-year in criminology and English, said the band’s alternative sound is one she would look forward to hearing live.

“I can see people of all ages liking this,” Clark said.

Fever Fever is slated to perform at Brother’s Drake Meadery Nov. 22.

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