The Skinny On... Molly Linen

Ahead of releasing her new single, A Lot to Give, Lost Map's Molly Linen takes on this month's Q&A. She tells us of her fear of heights, love of trees, and recalls the time she once ate hamster food

Feature by Molly Linen | 01 Apr 2021
  • Molly Linen

What’s your favourite place to visit? 
Pembrokeshire on the west coast of Wales. I love the coastal path that takes you to various beaches and coves. I have camped many times near St. Davids and once hiked the coastal path over five days, which was a pretty challenging experience (due to having a very heavy backpack), but also good fun.

What’s your favourite colour? 
Indigo – I really love the different tones that the indigo plant creates when it is used as a dye. 

Who was your hero growing up? 
My mum. When I was a teenager I wanted to dress in the way that she did in the 70s and would often wear her jumper that my grandma knitted for her when she was 16. She is a very inspirational woman and will always be my hero. 

Whose work inspires you now? 
I find Cate Le Bon very inspiring; I think the songs she writes are very true to herself. Every new album becomes my favourite, though it is always different to the one before. Her creative work outside of music is beautiful too – she’s made a couple of amazing Bauhaus-inspired chairs. 

How have you stayed inspired during the multiple lockdowns and various restrictions that have been in place for the past year? 
I've been exploring Glasgow’s numerous parks; there's a park not far from where I live that has huge pine trees and I love looking up at the tops of them, it gives me a sense of perspective. I've also been reading more in the past year than I have at any other time. I read The Hobbit for the first time and I also really enjoyed Surfacing by Margaret Atwood, which is about a woman who goes to an island in Northern Quebec to search for her missing father and starts to go mad.

What’s your favourite meal to cook at home? 
I really enjoy making big salads that involve lots of different components, such as roast sweet potato, cucumber and loads of leaves etc. Beans on toast is also a trusty favourite. 

What three people would you invite to your virtual dinner party? 
My best friend Laura – I cannot wait to cook and eat tasty food with her again. Vashti Bunyan – she seems very down to earth and would make good company. George Harrison – maybe he could teach me a thing or two about guitar. 

Apart from your own music, what other release are you most looking forward to coming out this year? 
I hear that H. Hawkline has been working on some new music – really looking forward to hearing that! 

What’s the worst film you’ve ever seen and what made it so bad? 
I think I’m pretty easy going with films and there haven’t been any I’ve watched that I’ve hated. Although, I thought the fourth Shrek film was a bit of a letdown.

What book would you take to a protracted period of government-enforced isolation? 
A book of Sudokus – once I’m in the Sudoku zone, there’s no stopping me. They’re really good for your brain and extremely satisfying when you complete them. Alternatively, The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben as I’ve just started it and it’s already taught me some amazing things about how trees communicate.

Who’s the worst? 

When did you last cry? 
Listening to a podcast about mental health. Also when I was watching The Great Pottery Throw Down final – when I see people getting emotional on TV, it always makes me cry. 

What are you most scared of? 
Heights. Just the thought of possibly tripping or leaning too far over a drop is terrifying. I even get a bit scared standing on a chair. I’m not sure what gave me this fear, but most of my family are also scared of heights, so maybe I inherited it. 

When did you last vomit? 
When I swam to the moon and helped myself to an alien buffet. That was pretty tough going on the tummy.

Tell us a secret? 
I once bought some chocolate flavoured treats for my pet hamster and ate a few of them. They did indeed taste of chocolate, but they weren’t delicious.

Which celebrity could you take in a fight? 
I find fights pretty scary, so I don’t think I could get into a proper fight with anyone. However, there are a few people I could happily slap.

If you could be reincarnated as an animal which animal would it be and why? 
A mouse lemur. They have really blobby-ended fingers and so do I, which works to my advantage as a guitarist. Maybe mouse lemurs are shredders. 

Molly Linen releases A Lot to Give on 31 Mar via Lost Map Records, to be followed by a music video and remix from Tommy Perman in April; the single and remix are both available as part of Lost Map's April PostMap Club