As we've said many times on Popshade, we love music with a groove; a groove that gives you that uncontrollable urge to get on the dance floor and go a little bit Saturday Night Fever.
Girl Friend do just that - they make a blend of disco/funk/pop which is perfect when you wanna bust out those unexplainable moves. We had a chat with the duo about... well, a bit of everything. Have a read...
Hey GF, imagine someone who’s never heard your music walks up to ya - what three words do you use to describe your music?
Hello! I'd say 'international, cosmopolitan, art-pop' - I'm not sure if this is entirely accurate, but it sounds cool..
‘Hello Stranger’ is a pop banger. How did the song come about? What was the writing process?
Thank you! It was co-written with a producer called Rich Turvey, a longtime GF collaborator. I'd been listening to a lot of Hall & Oats at the time and was keen to write something in a kind of yacht-rock/late-70s pop vain, but with a modern-electronic feel. The original demo was cool but it wasn't until we heard Louis La Roche's mix that we decided to go with 'Hello Stranger' as our next release.
There’s obvs a retro pop influence, so who are you biggest musical influences?
I mean, obvs. We take inspiration from all kinds of artists from the last 60 years or so, but I suppose the most obvious influence is 80s pop music and 70s disco. Acts like Depeche Mode, Hall & Oats, Prince, Bee Gees & Chic.
You're from a city known for its musical heritage, did any of the local artists have any influence on your sound and / or artistic development?
Absolutely. We're not native Mancunians, we were drawn to the city because of its musical heritage and vibrant live scene. Morrissey's music had a particularly big influence on me when I was younger. Our records are prodominantly electronic so people don't really make the connection, but we all grew up listening to The Smiths, Stone Roses, Oasis, James, Badly Drawn Boy etc.
What’s the next big step for Girl Friend? An EP? An album?
We'll release another single in the coming months. After that, who knows? We don't have a definitive plan for releasing; we've been writing and recording for most of this year with a view to bring out an album at some stage. When it feels right, we'll let you know. Right now we're just enjoying the festival season!
You’ve played some pretty epic live shows recently (supporting Take That say whaaaaat?), but do ya prefer those huge audiences, or the intimate venues more?
I know, Take That eh? Bizarre, but great. Because we're a new band, the larger shows we play tend to be at festivals or opening for bigger artists, like Take That. These kinds of gigs are an opportunity to make new fans and engage with new new people, I think that's what I like most about them. It's also a learning experience; you get to observe bands who've been in the industry for years. We've played some amazing smaller shows in the last year too - seeing people sing our songs back to us, the energy of a crowd in an intimate venue - it's great.
And say the world went mad (well… more mad), and ya woke up on a desert island with only one person to keep ya company, who would it be?
Oh god, tough one...it'd need to be someone relatively chilled out. I enjoy my own company and it could get pretty annoying having one person around ALL the time. Someone like Tim Burton would be cool. He could reel off a Hollywood anecdote every once in a while, then we'd sit in silence for a few hours. We could discuss Vincent Price films and create gothic sketches in the sand.
We are a pop site, so we have to ask - who is your ONE favourite pop artist of all time?
Arghh that's even more difficult! I can only pick one? Damn...I have a few. For the purpose of the question I'll say David Bowie, he inspired me to write music. I was obsessed with his records when I was growing up and I still reference him when working in the studio now. I admired his chameleonic nature - he was never bound by genre. He was always relevant and effortlessly cool.
And what’s one pop song you are loving right now?
Not sure if I'm allowed to, but I really like the new Ariana Grande single 'Into You'. Mostly because of Max Martin's songwriting/production, he seems to have developed the perfect pop formula. Grande's vocal acrobatics sound incredible over Martin's backdrop of rich synths and drum machines. Reminds me of his work on The Weeknd's last album.
Finally, if peeps wanna get more involved, where should they go?
We'd like to thank Girl Friend for taking the time to answer these questions!
BOOM! Do ya feel educated in the art of funk? You should. We reckon it's not long until you'll be hearing GF all over your airwaves, and that makes us all happy inside.
Go and follow em on all those social media sites above, and pre-order the single HERE.