Each week Fresh On The Net invites an artist or band to answer a short series of questions in Prick & Ding: the two and a half minute interview. It's convenient and quick - like enjoying a tasty microwave meal!THIS WEEK:MIRROR SIGNAL

Mirror Signal is the solo project of Suffolk based Steven Barker. I think he is rather fantastic & what a lovely soulful sound he has. It doesn’t need to be complicated when it swoops,swerves & dances like this,it feels like a murmuration of starlings in flight.Though listen in closely to ‘Broken Soldier’ and you will hear the less is more framework reveal subtle layers that slowly peel away and reveal themselves as the song opens up.

Great voice, great songs & a unique ability to cross pollinate jazz, soul, pop & folk in a lovely organic way – what more could you ask for?

Initially a completely acoustic venture, Steven began broadening his musical interests, and as a result, his musical creativity. He saved up and bought a Macbook, some software, and a decent microphone, and began penning and recording his debut EP “Broken Soldier” all from his bedroom.

With the Broken Solider EP already released this year and its follow up “Submarine Eyes” due in early 2014 this is a great time to discover this emerging artist before he blows up big.

Catch him live @ The Sugarmill, Stoke-on-Trent on January 25th

This is Prick and Ding 73 and This is Mirror Signal

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1.What are you up to at the moment?
I’m studying music technology at Keele University right now, it’s been a lot of fun so far. I’ve been travelling to London quite often between lectures too for gigs and general meetings, which has been really interesting. Travelling around opens you up to more than you realized was out there, especially since I’m from South Suffolk, it’s been nice to get into a more built up environment for a change and actually see what’s going on.

2.Favourite childhood memory?
I haven’t really thought about this before. Now that I have, the first thing that comes to mind was when my little brother was born. I wasn’t there at the time; I was at the airport with my dad picking up my grandma (mum’s mum) who was visiting from Africa. He was premature, and I remember seeing him in the incubator for a few weeks after the birth. His birth was probably one of the least natural, but he’s all good now, nearly taller than me!

Generally I’d say my parents, they’ve always been there, always helped me out and believed in me. It’s not been the easiest ride, parent-child relationships never are, but I don’t take for granted anything they’ve done.

Musically, I’d say Thom Yorke. I like weird, out of the box music, that still has an accessible factor to it, and he just gets it right every time. He has a real problem with the mainstream industry and I agree with his modes of operation and his beliefs about it. Also my main love in music is melody, Radiohead, Atoms For Peace and Thom Yorke Himself, you can hear these amazing melodies that you’d have never thought of, strange key changes, jagged rhythms, whatever, it’s all there. It’s one of those subjects I could talk about for hours in person.

Anything and anyone that has anything to do with X Factor or any program like that. If you’re in the music industry then you know what’s wrong with it so I won’t go into it, I’ll get myself angry…

5.What/who makes you laugh?
Awkward situations are extremely funny for me. And speaking in fake voices makes me laugh too. I could list a whole bunch of comedians in films or stand-up that I like, but I reckon I have the biggest and best laughs with my friend Max, we can descend into some pretty gruesome conversations and come out of them crying of laughter.

6.Describe what you do?
I’m an all round musical artist. I play instruments, I sing, and I produce, I don’t want to be seen as any single one of those things alone.

7.Who’s hair would you like to have for just one day?
Someone who has no hair, I’ve never experienced hairlessness that in my life. I like my hair too much to cut it though!

8.Best musical experience to date?
Supporting Jamie Cullum in October. In fact, receiving the email saying I’d been picked was probably better. It was extremely surreal! Jamie is so down to Earth though, nicest guy, and he’s great live, I hope I can do something like that with him again.

9.What artist inspires you?
This list will be too long, but here’s a link to a spotify playlist that I constantly build. At the moment, Everything Everything, Flume, Chet Faker, Bombay Bicycle Club, James Blake, Moderat, The Hics, and other interesting artists are on there.
Wooooo –

10.What does Fresh On The Net mean to you?
Fresh on the Net is another great outlet for upcoming and local musicians, helping them out and sharing the music and interests with people that want to know about it. There is a real community for unsigned and local music, one that’s treated my extremely well, so I’m always up for speaking to people who support people like me.

Johnno Casson

Johnno Casson is a London-born/Colchester-based singer, musician, songwriter and show-off. He also compiles and releases compilations and is a serial supporter of new music. Johnno releases his own music as Snippet ,Old Tramp and also under his own name Johnno Casson.. As far as we know he was the most-played artist ever on Tom's legendary late night Fresh On The Net radio shows on 6 Music - having been featured no less than 18 times and appearing as an interview guest. You can also find Johnno on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube...


  1. Crikey…thats some voice! Not surprised that Steven’s been asked to support Jamie Cullum – I can hear the two complimenting each other beautifully.
    Enjoyed listening and reading.
    Thanks to Steven and Mr C

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