FUSE are virtuoso musicians Linzi Stoppard and Ben Lee who, on their eponymous debut album, harness their bespoke signature Bridge electric violins and take Rock tracks that people love and radically but lovingly reinterpret them. The popular electrical violinists celebrated another first earlier this year when they became the first string act to feature with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with a James Bond themed musical collaboration at Henley this summer. FUSE are releasing their new single. ‘Step Up Beethoven’ in time for Christmas in Asia and will be following it up in the New Year with a US tour.
Entertwine: You both as violinists are a really unique group! How did you get started with the violin?
Linzi Stoppard: Both Ben & I started learning the violin at an early age, taught by the Suzuki method.
It’s a fun and rewarding way to learn as one is taught be ear instead of traditionally learning to read music.
ET: What made you decide to take the violin to another level musically to create the sound you have today?
LS: We just wanted to do something different and completely unique. When recording we use analogue valve guitar amps (and when live we add a combination of effects) – we are always looking to experiment all sorts of new approaches and equipment. In fact we get people all the time saying that they can’t hear the violins on our tracks – it’s only when we explain that what they thought was a guitar is the violins that they really understand quite how revolutionary FUSE are. We also wanted to introduce a whole new and younger audience to the electric violin, to show it can be as versatile as the more commonplace guitar
ET: Out of all of your pieces, which one is your favorite to perform and why?
LS: We love performing our new single “Ignite The Fuse’ a slight departure from the pop/rock material but the track has a catchy melodic top-line whilst experimenting with the dance genre, specifically influences from dubstep. Our audiences and fans alike seem to like it alot.
ET: Tell us about your latest album. When writing and producing, what was the one thing you wanted to get across to your audience?
LS: We recorded and released a rock anthems album (Edel/Universal Music). This was a completely new approach to what was previously thought to be just a classical instrument. And it wasn’t just the choice of tracks—we adopted guitar techniques as well. Especially when it came to our sound. People and fans often ask us how we create our signature sound on a violin. It’s secret, so I am not about to divulge it, but it does involve a mix of analogue valve amps, midi inputs, effects pedals and a special bespoke ingredient built for us by a famous guitar technician.
ET: If you could describe Fuse’s music in three words, what would they be?
LS: Fresh, contemporary and sophisticated
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