Talking new albums with Conor Murphy of Foxing & Smidley

Conor Murphy of Foxing released a solo album under the name Smidley. Compared to his day band, Smidley is light hearted, fun, with an indie kind of vibe. Still, this isn’t beach music, the songs are still quite sad.

I asked him about balancing Smidley with Foxing, fans reaction to Smidley, and just about writing the album in general…so here’s the interview:

What made you decide to start another band despite the busy schedule you already had with Foxing?

I started Smidley because I wanted to write songs without pressure. I needed a break from serious songs to remind myself how much I love writing. That’s why a lot of the Smidley stuff is satirical and carefree.

Do you think you would’ve gotten a negative reaction if you used the lyrics for Smidley on a Foxing album? Or was Foxing’s music just not fitting to what you wanted this album to sound like?

I don’t know about negative but maybe a confused reaction. Like “where did this shift in tone come from?” I just couldn’t imagine Foxing playing No One Likes You. I assume our fans would just be like “What the fuck is happening?”

Foxing. Photo from their bandcamp.

Do you write according to the project you’re working on or do you tend to write and then decide?

Well, I have pages and pages of lyrics in my phone. Most are complete garbage. But, to me, it’s more about melody and the music behind the lyrics. I look at songs at the end of writing them and judge if they should be for Foxing, Smidley, or the trash can. They are usually for the trash can.

You reference drugs quite a few times on the Smidley album, is it in a sarcastic way or a more literal way? Most of the lyrics do seem a bit sarcastic or playful. Sorry if that’s too personal. You don’t need to get into it.

Oh no it’s cool. Drugs play a giant role in my life. When I was younger, I took a lot of different drugs (mostly illegal) to cope with mental illness and general teenagerness. I had some fucked up teen years. When Foxing started, I really evened out. I started using prescription medicine and giving those same illnesses a clinical name. These days, when I take psychedelic drugs or downers or whatever, it’s for fun rather than for numbing or escape. So I guess to answer that question, it’s both.

What’s your favorite song you’ve written? And what is your favorite song to play live?

Well, for Foxing, my favorite song we’ve made is “Night Channels.” It’s also my favorite song to play live. In Smidley, I think my favorite to play is definitely “Fuck This” and favorite on the record is “It Doesn’t Tear Me Up.

Night Channels is my favorite one as well. Lastly, will the next album release be Foxing or Smidley? Or is it too soon to tell?

I’d say it’s too soon to tell with Smidley. But Foxing is working on our new record right now. I don’t know when it will be done, but the songs are written and we love them.

So there you have it. Foxing fans expect a new album soon, and in the mean time listen to Smidley’s new album…purchase it/stream here.


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