February 14th, 2017
We catch up with Jonathan from your new favourite Mancunian band – Ménage à Trois.
Describing themselves as a “bogan shemale threesome” and with one of the sauciest band names out there, it’s no surprise that Ménage à Trois have perfected the sexy late night synth sound. Creating music from “a place of love”, the band create hauntingly romantic electro-pop songs, making you want to dance at some points and fall in love at others. Inspired by the ocean and the deep abyss, their floaty pop style embodies the indie influence of growing up in Manchester combined with an R&B flair. What you get is stunningly silky melodies, effortlessly gliding over captivating synth rhythms.
With their debut album being released on French Indie label Cracki Records and due to make an appearance at the end of March, we caught up with Jonathan to find out more about them.
How did you all meet?
I first met Craig outside a hip hop party in Manchester and I first met Joe at an early exhibition of some of my photographs. We had been friends for years before even thinking about making music together. One night a bunch of us hit this Karaoke bar in the Gay Village and I sang an Elton John song. Shortly after that we started making songs for fun.
Who are your musical inspirations?
Michael Jackson, Molly Nilson, Joan Armatrading, Jorkes, George Michael.
Your hometown of Manchester is known for producing some pretty incredible bands. Has growing up in Manchester had an influence on your music?
Manchester is like a desert. A cold wet desert. It’s harsh sometimes and maybe that’s why our music longs for sun and love and good times. We all do different things in Manchester that sustain our being. Craig works at the LGBT Foundation, I teach Image Making & Styling and Joe is all music.
How would you describe your sound?
Is it easy to combine your creative visions of what you want your sound to be?
It’s been a natural progression and ultimately we all love and trust each other. Sometimes we fight for something we individually believe in but always reach a harmony together before making those decisions. Sometimes there’s no need for discussion. Love is stronger than pride.
You recently released your newest single ‘Homecoming’. Can you tell us a bit about it?
The story is… I met a Brazilian boy named Possidonio one summer ago. A few days after we met I was leaving for Greece to shoot an underwater photography project on a beautiful island called Ithaca only reachable by ferry or boat. I had been gone a few days and I received a message telling me to wait at the port at midnight. A boat came in from the distance, the door lowered and he stood in silhouette in front of me. We walked mountains and cut each other’s hair on the side of the road listening to Arthur Russell. We swam naked in the ocean and slept in a hammock, sailed the island and held each other close. We fell in love. On our return we had little time before Possidonio left to Brazil, it was bitter sweet and what followed was a longing to be together soon again.
The video for the track is footage from your trip to Buenos Aires. Can you tell us about the trip?
We had been touring with Molly Nilsson and we got the opportunity to play in Argentina, the setting of another great love story. We spent most of our time drinking white wine on rooftops listening to INXS. We flew straight into Paris on a 15-hour flight to play a show and Craig almost died.
The track is from your upcoming debut album, Australia Part III, which is out in March. What can we expect from the album?
The Journey is the destination and the album includes stories along the way of Love and Adventure.
How does it differ to your previous EPs ‘Australia Part I’ and ‘Part II’?
It’s the first time we recorded “professionally” in a studio. We worked out in the countryside in an old house in Normandy with Alain at Studio 33. It’s full of hits.
What have you got lined up for this year?
Hopefully coming to a city near you soon. We will be announcing shows when the album drops in March.
Words: Elly Watson