Who is Fog Lake?
In 2008 Aaron Powell released his first album there’s a spirit there’s a soul by himself in his Glovertown bedroom. The solo-experiment, which is now called Fog Lake, is an evolving and intriguing lo-fi pop project and band now based in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
“It started out just for fun, I just wanted to see if I could make a record. I was learning the instruments as I went along and recording too. I never thought I’d pursue music but the dream at the start was to make a record. But once I did that I just got really into and wanted to make more.”
It began as a hobby for Powell, who admittedly began making music as he learned to play. Originally Powell’s objective was to write scores or soundtracks for his short films because he studied film and made movies before music eventually took priority.
“I was really passionate about film until I started making music and then music took over. The first music I ever made was ambient drum music that could soundtrack a film y’know?”, says Powell, “I originally wanted to make music that could soundtrack a movie that I made.”
“[Eventually] I started making pop songs with words and melodies. So yeah I think that my music is pretty cinematic. I was trying to make music that could soundtrack a video or a movie or something. I think a lot of my music comes from my love for film.”, he continued.
Like many musicians in the computer era, the internet gave him the perfect platform to launch his music into cyberspace to find his audience. Since Fog Lake’s first release 6 years ago, he has released two full length albums and two demo’s, all which attracted attention online.
Once the ambient, lo-fi style music found it’s online niche; Brooklyn, New York’s label Bird Tapes were eager to work with Fog Lake. The striking resemblance of Fog Lake and other bands on Bird Tapes is apparent and this made his addition their roster seamless.
Bird Tapes worked with Fog Lake releasing his EP Holy Cross; But eventual complications with the label caused Fog Lake to switch to Orchid Tapes (also from Brooklyn, New York).
“Virgo Indigo was supposed to be released on Bird Tapes but it kind of fell apart. It seems like a lot of artists from Bird Tapes moved to Orchid Tapes,” says Powell.
Fog Lake began to grow in popularity and his music was traveling father so, in March 2013 he decided that moving to St. John’s from Glovertown would be best.
“It was intimidating. I didn’t know anyone. I just show up in the city playing music and nobody knows who I am — I didn’t even know where the bars were to play in or who to talk to.” says Powell, “So it took me a while but it seems like I’m at a good place now.”
Frankly, Powell’s first live show ever at the Levee, was a bust. But soon after Fog Lake garnered praise within the cities’ music community.
It didn’t take long before Fog Lake even landed himself on the lineup for the annual Lawnya Vawnya festival in St. John’s; all the while his album ‘Virgo Indigo’ was still gaining notoriety from his online listeners and fellow song writers.
The success of the Virgo Indigo album hasn’t satiated Powell’s desire to improve, and continue. Recently he decided to form a band for Fog Lake’s live performances with Derek Ashley (guitar), Kenney Purchase (synth); and he is now working on a new album he hopes to have out by next April.
“Trying to make sure that it’s the best record [is important]”, he says, “Orchid Tapes is getting a lot of hype and I feel like I will have to step it up if I’m gonna keep up with all the other guys on there.”
For now, Powell’s focus, with help from his newly added manager Matt Carson, remains on his eastern Canadian tour planned for August 14th until the 21st. Powell will be touring along with London, Ontario’s The Rasberry Heaven.
He also hopes to make stops in Halifax, Toronto, Hamilton and Quebec City on way to the grand finale show in Montreal; where he’ll be playing with Two Knights and The Reptilian – both highly regarded and respected indie bands from Denton, Texas and Kalamazoo, Texas respectfully.
Special credit: Noah Bender for taking all of the photos included in this article. Check him out here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/knoahknoah/
Editor’s note: There’s been two edits since this article’s original publication: Aaron will be touring with the Rasberry Heaven and Kenney Purchase will be playing synth on Fog Lake’s August tour.