Southern are Belfast-born, Liverpool-based band comprised of brother and sister Thom and Lucy Southern. Before their upcoming shows next month supporting The Kooks and THUMPERS, A Music Blog, Yea? spoke with both Thom and Lucy about their new EP Where The Wild Are, their use of harmonies, being siblings, and their forthcoming debut album. Here’s what they had to say:
AMBY: Thanks for speaking with us today Southern! What have you been up to lately?
Southern: Thank you! We’ve finished writing our debut album and we’re recording bits of it when we’re not touring.
AMBY: How would you describe each other in one word?
Southern: Thom – funny, Lucy – thoughtful
AMBY: What’s the story behind your new song Where The Wild Are?
Southern: It was inspired after we saw the film ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ years ago. Thom started the song when he was 16 so it was inspired by the movie and the difficulties of growing up but the song has been updated over years into a bunch of fictional stories. It’s basically about moving on from bad experiences. Our songs are never completely personal to us. We make up a story in our heads a lot of the time so the listener can make their own picture in their minds. Just like writing a short story..
AMBY: The track is taken from your new EP Where The Wild Are. What was the experience like recording the EP?
Southern: We recorded the tracks in different places. Where the Wild Are was produced by Dan Grech who’s worked with bands like Radiohead and The Vaccines. We’ve been working on more songs with him recently, he’s been brilliant to work with. We’ve learnt a lot from working with him and have become a better band because of it. We recorded it in some brilliant studios in London which was also a new experience. The B sides ‘Oh Won’t You Go’ and ‘Four Days’ were produced by Al Groves in The Motor Museum in Liverpool. This was another great experience as Al took a different angle on this session, making us play both songs completely Live which gave it this great natural raw sound which has brought a great atmosphere to the EP as a whole. ‘Oh won’t you go’ is the first time Lucy’s taken lead. Our debut album will have Lucy singing solo a lot which people haven’t heard yet.
AMBY: I really love the use of harmonies used throughout your music. How did these become part of your sound?
Southern: Lucy’s been able to sing harmonies naturally since she was about 10. It was around that time Thom start singing at 16/17 that we discovered our voices blended really well.
AMBY: Do you find the dynamics of being brother and sister makes working together easier, or do you butt heads more often because of it?
Southern: Bit of both actually! But on a musical level it’s easier, we really understand how each other thinks. We’re completely comfortable when it comes to writing. We’ve developed together really naturally as songwriters. We share an apartment together in Liverpool so we fall out about stupid things like cleaning up and emptying the bin!
AMBY: Who have you been listening to lately?
Southern: We’ve been listening to the La’s and Mazzy Star a lot recently. Usually we listen to Beck, The Rolling Stones, Chet Baker and Billie Holiday. We listen to lots of things, it depends on our moods.
AMBY: What has you most excited for the rest of 2014?
Southern: Festivals and finishing our debut album!
AMBY: Lastly, what’s something about Southern that nobody knows yet?
Southern: We’ve moved around England and Ireland a lot as kids so we’ve had some funny accents before our now Belfast accents.
Thank you Southern, for giving us your answers!
Alicia Atout | @AliciaAtout