SmokedFalmon is the solo project of veteran trans-European busker and now Lisbon local Nuno Ferreira. Nuno uses an acoustic guitar, a loop station, fingers, and feet to create eerie, melodic grooves that inspire countless ears and souls floating about town.
As part of the ongoing series in partnership with PORT to PORT festival, we dove behind the scenes.
Where are you from and where are you based?
According to my mom, I was found under a stone somewhere in a small town called Samora Correia. I moved out as soon as I had the chance to and haven’t had a fixed base since.
In the past years, I have been traveling around Europe and spending most of my time living in a van, although I do find myself quite often in Lisboa since a good share of friends and family live around there. It has a vibrant cultural scene that I kind of feel is going through a stagnation period, but a lot of new initiatives are coming up and bringing some fresh air into the scene, keeping the culture alive.
What style of music do you play and what drew you to it?
Ah! This project is mostly influenced by my journeys within the psychedelic realm and how those journeys have affected me emotionally, mentally, and creatively. It came to life with the need to find a more clear and direct way of expressing what Falmon feels behind his skin in everyday life. And out of that, the SmokedFalmon was born.
Musically, the genre doesn’t really matter. If the sounds “hit home” they are set to be a source of musical inspiration. To name a few projects that have been strongly influential to me – Tool, Counterparts, This Will Destroy You, Shpongle, Sumiruna… the list goes on and on. Given this, I guess I create some sort of melancholic psychedelic post-rock with a bunch of electronic ambient/chillout sounds, but I’m still trying to figure that out!
What’s your most memorable gig to date and why?
The most memorable gig I have had was probably the first one ever with this project, I applied randomly to play in Caldas Late Night without having any song prepared (or anything prepared actually) and ended up being invited to play in the main square with just my guitar and an FX pedal. It was a very intense moment, mostly because the band playing before me was doing some sort of pop music and I had no idea about what I was going to do once I would be on stage. It turned out pretty good even though I improvised my way through it and had no idea about what I was doing. I still managed to do a 1h30 set and when I was done with it, the crowd cheered (instant goosebumps) and I felt I could have gone on for another hour.
One of the most memorable gigs I went to was The Chariot at Musicbox, back in 2009. That was a constant energy overflow of artists getting crazy, the crowd going wild, pure bliss, and a broken finger from the moshpit. Also, I have to say that I saw Sigur Ros live some years ago and cried throughout the entire gig. What a beautiful experience that was, both auditorily and visually.
Do you have any other projects outside of your music? What are they?
Well, I am a cook, but I kind of broke that relationship to dedicate myself to music 100 percent. I have an electronic music project called Umhume that explores the dark end of progressive dance music and organizes some events in the woods with a really close group of friends focused in dark/deep psychedelic music (Changa Records). I also recently created a platform with a very close friend of mine, and an awesome artist, called Buzio, where we focus on creating donation-based events and supporting small music projects.
Is there a song/album that you’ve made that you’re particularly proud of or stands out for you? Which one and why? (and can we hear it?)
I released a self-produced/edited/mixed EP back in December last year. What makes me really proud about it is the fact that I started and finished it without going away from the original idea, even if the sound quality is not the best, it is mostly a personal achievement. You can stream it on Soundcloud and download it on Bandcamp!
Have you got any upcoming shows that Garden Collective members should check out?
Of course! I am going to play in the beautiful festival you awesome people are putting up on the 22nd of March and am building up my gig agenda for this summer. You can also check the rave party on the 14 of March in Lisbon, where I will be presenting my electronic music project.
Anything else you want to tell us about?
I will leave you here all the links I could possibly have regarding the Falmon experience.
Live video @HitchFest
Looking forward to the great things that are yet to be discovered.
Much love to you all.
This interview is part of a series of behind-the-scenes conversations with artists on the lineup for PORT to PORT festival, for which Atlas Lisboa is the Official Media Partner! Stay tuned for more interviews, news, and more!