Those with a true gift for words are hard to ignore. Drawing inspiration from Irish literary tradition and folk music, as well as 60s psychedelia and gothic rock, A.S. Fanning has acquired a balanced formula that fully embraces political comment and social criticism, while remaining emotionally-charged.

‘Abandoned’, the first single off of his upcoming sophomore album, You Should Go Mad is an ode to the age of property speculators, shorting markets, zero-hour contracts, poverty traps and worker exploitation; being a slave to the wage stuck in a rat-trap. These are dark times we live in, and if some things are in need of change, through his music, Fanning helps in leading the way forward.

Ahead of his single-release show at Privatclub, we invited A.S. Fanning to give us insight into the tracks that inspired him throughout the months leading up to the creation of his forthcoming new album.

Scott Walker – It’s Raining Today

I love Scott Walker’s ability to create something that’s really slick, well-produced and beautiful, but that also has this sense of foreboding and tension. Most of this song, his voice and the instrumentation, sound like honey, but then Wally Stott’s string arrangement sounds like pure anxiety, droning discordantly from the first second.

Suicide – Ghost Rider

I was starting to use drum machines more when I was writing this album, but I never really liked when people try to get too intricate with them, attempting to imitate a real drummer. Suicide basically just switch it on and let it run.

Kendrick Lamar – Untitled 8

I remember watching this online, maybe the morning after it was broadcast. I had been a big fan of To Pimp A Butterfly already, but there was something about his performance here, a sense of someone who was really trying to push the boat out and challenge themselves. There’s a huge amount of courage in it, as well as the obvious artistic and technical excellence of him and his band.

I think I was in the middle of writing a couple of different songs for the album, including the title track, and it gave me a sort of push to try and write something more ambitious, but somehow stranger and more confrontational than I had before.

Kraftwerk – Metropolis

The sounds in this are obviously great but the way the tracks builds, introducing different rhythms, melodies and textures as it develops, is something that Kraftwerk are brilliant at.

The Velvet Underground – Ride Into The Sun

I just love this recording. I think it’s the lo-fi harshness. There’s something very intimate about it, as if it’s been recorded surreptitiously, like it’s not something we were meant to hear. That combined with the sweetness and romance of the song gives it a sort of magic.

Follow A.S Fanning on Facebook and Instagram for more updates. He will be performing this Friday, 15th November at Privatclub in Kreuzberg. Info and tickets here.