Established Chemistry: An Interview with Head Fake

When the anonymous musicians known as Head Fake started recording music together, it was originally two friends who shared a love of 80s music having fun in the studio. The idea of anonymity was their preference to be scrutinized on the music itself versus people scouring the internet to learn more about their musical background. It wasn’t until their loved ones heard their first song, “One Step”, that they realized it was something much more than they anticipated.

For the original duo, as the songwriter and vocalist, their relationship is incredibly unique. Not only do they play roles that stereotypically don’t happen in most bands, but they also reside in very different parts of the world. However, they are both able to come together and create songs that mean something different to each of them.

“It's really interesting because somebody with such lyrical zest and the ability to write emotional songs about things that are difficult for people, with real vision... I think EP 1, for me, was two guys getting together and experimenting and giving that output to a producer. EP 2 was much more of an established chemistry [and] seeing what we can build knowing each other’s strengths and weaknesses and, more importantly, influences,” they said.

Although they give one another the opportunity to tinker with the lyrics to give them a more personal experience, it is still fascinating to watch one idea come together from another. For example, “2 A.M.” gave one of them the imagery that reminded him of his father’s recent passing and that lost feeling that came with it. It wasn’t the same experience that the songwriter had when originally writing it, but it was able to make an individual impact that made the song all the more special.

“It's a collaboration and I think what I find personally very interesting is if you take three guys in their mid-life and they've generally got pretty set in their ways, have very strong ideas of how things are done, and to walk into a studio with people who are prepared to be very collaborative and consensual in the way that they write and produce music, I think that's a pretty beautiful thing I'd say.”

They released EP 2 in February, but all thoughts of promotion were altered by the global pandemic. What they did instead was begin and complete EP 3. It was a creation process like they had never done before - it was completely remote and incredibly challenging.

"Although it was challenging, what it did prove is that if you have a common vision, it doesn't really matter where you are in terms of trying to get stuff done,” they said. “Yeah, there were miscommunications, but I'm sure even in your business you realize that when you're trying to get stuff done on Zoom or on calls, miscommunication gets magnified but actually I think ultimately it proves the resilience of the vision.”

They may not have been able to have immediate feedback as they wrote and recorded their parts, but they do agree that their relationship grew stronger as they navigated through this different process. They also found that some of the unreleased songs continue the tradition of being written with one idea in mind and getting a different interpretation as it came together.

The emotional depth that Head Fake puts into each song is what makes them all the more mysterious. The imagery they provide, from the lyrics to the accompanying music videos, allows the listener to have their own experience just as each member does. As for the release of EP 3, stay tuned.