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On the recent HYPE THEM show with kaoti and sher, our hosting duo welcomed guest FEAR OF MARKO to the airwaves. The Manchester alt-pop artist performed some exclusive live renditions of his tracks. He also joined kaoti and sher for their bi-monthly discussions of LGBTQIA+ news and culture. Catch up on the full show now.

Watch the full live session on Youtube here.

We wanted to get to know the Northern rising artist better and find out more about his influences and journey. Read our full interview with MARKO below.

Please can you introduce your name, pronouns, and star sign.

I’m MARKO (aka. FEAR OF MARKO), my pronouns are he/they, and I’m a Sagittarius.  

If you had to describe your music in three words to someone who had never heard it before, how would you describe it? 

Nostalgic, futuristic and iconic.

Where did your journey with music begin?

It started for me as a teenager, writing songs over beats I found on Soundcloud. I was very inspired by Tumblr and growing up online. After putting a couple of demos on the Internet, I started to meet other  like-minded artists and producers to collaborate that way. Soon after this, I found management and began  playing shows.  

Have there been any important figures/role models in your musical journey or any that have inspired your sound/aesthetic?

I listened to a lot of music when I was a kid. I grew up in the late 2010s so, for me, it was a lot of The Black Eyed Peas, The Ting Tings, and Gorillaz.  

Also, growing up as a teenager on the internet, I was definitely inspired by a lot of Tumblr wave artists too, such as Lana Del Rey, Sky Ferreira, The Weeknd, and Halsey. I remember seeing those artists growing up and  loving how they created a world outside of music.  

It wasn’t until I heard the early PC music that I really felt really inspired to make my own stuff.  Hearing what a lot of artists on that label (GFOTY, EASYFUN, and Danny L Harle) were doing, alongside with Charli  XCX and SOPHIE pushing it more in the mainstream, really made me want to break the boundaries and experiment more with my own sound.  

The greats inspire me too; like David Bowie, Bjork, Kate Bush, Nirvana, and Britney Spears.

Where do you find inspiration for your creativity?

I’m very inspired by my life and what’s going on in it at the time. A lot of my songs just happen and I don’t think too much about it during the process; it’s usually afterwards that I realise what they’re about. I’m very inspired by collaborating and my best work comes from collaborating with other people.  

It’s super exciting to have you on the HYPE THEM show following the release of your latest single, ‘TEETH’. Can you tell us a bit more about what the track is about and how the release has gone?

‘TEETH’ came about from a writing session I had arranged at the end of Summer last year. I was in a weird place where I wasn’t sure what I was going to do moving forward. I had loads of new music but everything kept getting stalled. Initially, I planned to write songs for other artists but ‘TEETH’ came about. After sitting on  it for a couple of months, it just felt right to release it. It feels really good to be able to share new music with my supporters again.  

Who is your queer icon?

David Bowie. 

How does your music writing process look?:

Usually quite messy. I just throw melodies and harmonies down and come up with a rough top line  and just go from there. Most of the time I just use my notes app on my phone.  

What does being queer mean to you?

Being queer is super important to me. Growing up, I always felt like an outcast and it wasn’t until I found my community and people who felt the same as me that I felt like I finally fit in somewhere.  

Can you give us three emerging artists we should be listening to at the moment (preferably from Manchester/North West, but anywhere is fine)?:

Olivia Browse, SAMXEMMA, and Kit Major. 

What do you see for the future of FEAR OF MARKO? Do you have any particular goals you’d like to achieve with your creative journey?:

I feel like I’m in a better place than I’ve ever been and I have a good team of people around me now. I think I’d just like to take it as far as I can and see where it takes us. 

Where’s the best place for people to find you on social media and to find your music?

You can find me as @fearofmarko on all social media and you can check out my music here.

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