NOLA house and indie lovers, prepare yourself: Pierce Fulton is making his way back to New Orleans. River Beats last caught up with Fulton before his Zoolu 23 set during Mardi Gras 2016. The Big Easy will host the third performance of Fulton’s nationwide Better Places Tour at the House of Blues on Friday, November 17.
A multi-instrumentalist and producer, Pierce Fulton’s musical versatility enables him to craft elaborate, but authentic arrangements using various instruments. The instruments he uses live and in recordings range from electric and acoustic guitars to xylophones and drum pads. These warm, organic instrumental samples only enhance the feels-y atmosphere Fulton seeks to create. The official video for his break-out progressive house hit “Kuaga” may best demonstrate the artist’s instrumental proclivity.
Earlier this year, the Vermont native released his sophomore full-length effort, Better Places (2017), following the Borrowed Lives EP (2016) and Introducing Pierce Fulton (2014). Fulton is perhaps best known for soaring emotive and melodic compositions in the vein of progressive house and sweeping, airy soundscapes like “Yesterday.” But through continued experimentation and collaborations with other vocal and instrumental artists, Fulton’s signature style has both expanded and intensified. His sound remains distinctly his own. But, his chameleon-like adaptability also showcases his range as a performer, composer, and collaborator onstage and in the studio.
Vocals play a critical role in Fulton’s music, but the style and timbre of the voices he features vary, establishing different tones and moods in their wake. They range from colossal resonance heard in tracks like in “Kuaga” to cleaner indie vocals (Think: Hot Chip) in “Listen to Your Mama.” Also indicative of vocals’ significance to Fulton’s performance, two of his regular vocal collaborators join him on this U.S. winter tour.
That support includes Los Angeles-based artist collective and laptop punk purveyors NVDES, fronted by Josh Ocean. NVDES collaborated with Fulton on “Better Places,” the title track for his latest album and tour. That’s now in addition to their collaboration on “Borrowed Lives,” the title track off Fulton’s 2016 EP. Ocean has described his music in a previous interview as attempts “to capture a raw carelessness and spontaneous excitement.” As such, NVDES brings a palpable energy listeners can feel on collabs with Fulton. And those fresh, funky vibes aptly complement Fulton’s more emotional and melodic indie-fueled style.
Synth/electro pop vocalist Noosa also joins Fulton on the Better Places Tour. The Long Island native contributed vocals to two tracks on Fulton’s new album. These include “Autumn Blossom” and “The Sound,” which closes out the album in spectacular indie-pop fashion. The track’s mesmerizing vocals and soulful acoustic guitar lines take center stage ahead of simpler indietronica synth drum patterns. That combo with Noosa providing live vocals should be an enticing song to catch performed live.
Featured image via Pierce Fulton Facebook page.