They’ve been hailed as the “new xx” – meet hotly-tipped trio London Grammar.
London Grammar are on a winning mission to make 2013 their year. With their smooth vocals, delicate harmonies and light synths, it’s no wonder that tracks like ‘Wasting My Younger Years’ are saturating the UK airwaves, finding champions in Huw Stephens and Zane Lowe (who called it an early contender for Track of the Year).
We caught up with them to talk about their EP ‘Metal & Dust’ and to see what else this already proficient year has in store for the London language-loving three.
You guys all met at university. Has music always been a passion or were you all swotters?
Dan: We were all studying different things at University. Hannah and Dot both studied English and Art, and I studied Economics and Philosophy, but the reason we met and became friends was because we love playing music.
What sort of music were you all inspired by as you were growing up?
Dot: Each of us had very different musical experiences growing up. Hannah grew up listening to all the great soul singers, like Gladys Knight and Michael Jackson. Dan found inspiration in his parents record collection, artists like David Bowie and The Police. And I spent a lot of time at the piano playing classical pieces.
You have a very intricate sound. Where do you draw influences from, aesthetically and musically?
Hannah: We have varying tastes in music, which all help to influence our sound in different ways. But there are certain artists and styles of music that we consistently listen to as a band. We all have a mutual love for bands like Little Dragon and Radiohead. And we also draw influences from film music, Thomas Newman tends to crop up often.
Your songs all seem pretty emotional. How is it performing such personal songs to a crowd of many?
Hannah: It was a little nerve wracking at first, but it was amazing to have people sing the songs back to us, when that happens you realise that people love the music partly because it’s emotional…. Not so scary after that.
Tell us about your EP, ‘Metal & Dust’.
Dan: The idea with ‘Metal & Dust’ was to create a snapshot of London Grammar. We chose to have those 3 songs on the EP because we thought they would show all the different elements to our music, and what’s to come on our album. We added Dots remix of ‘Hey Now’, because it’s got a great bass line.
It’s been getting huge industry applause. How do you feel about the support you’ve been getting from everyone?
Dan: It’s been amazing and quite overwhelming……
So… Best gig to date?
Dot: We have only just started playing live again, since releasing the EP. We had taken off almost a year and half from playing live shows to record our album… But so far the best was our recent show in London. It was our first headline show, and it was good fun.
What else are you excited about for the forthcoming year?
Dot: The main thing would be to release our debut album. We are excited to share all the music that’s come from spending a lot of time in the studio. 2 years to be precise!
You’re playing a fair amount of summer festivals. Are there any other bands/artists that you’re looking forward to being billed alongside?
Dot: I think we are on the same stage as Empire of the Sun at Wilderness Festival. Cannot wait to see them live, their music is glorious!
Words: Shane Hawkins (Follow Shane on Twitter @piccadilly_boy)