Interview: M w S
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We are all in the dark about how much Brexit will affect the music industry. However, it is likely to affect live music and make touring harder for international musicians. The National Student speaks to M w S, an Italian indie pop duo who coincidentally arrived in London on the day of the EU Referendum.
Image credit: M w S via Sonnet MusicGiulia and Francesco began recording music together in their seaside hometown of La Spezia, Italy. After changing direction, the name M w S seemed to fit their new style because the acronym stands for "music we see" and they "like to use a lot of 'images' taken from films and dreams in [their] songs". The move to "magnetic" London was decided on because of the increased opportunities for their style of music there, which were lacking, at the time, in Italy. Three years on, and the duo is more optimistic about Italy's "quite varied and growing" music scene. They add, "apart from the mainstream and hip-hop, there are a number of 'indie pop' artists that are doing great [...] there's a growing nu-soul revival in Italy too." Since the move in 2016, London has delivered what the band were searching for. This has come in the form of greater collaboration opportunities with all sides of the creative industries including photographers, filmmakers, producers. They have also had the chance to explore their individuality, which has been encouraged by open-minded audiences. As a result, they've developed a unique sound, which can be described as a contemporary electro-pop with a distinctly dreamy ambience. Despite this, their songs always start life in a humble, organic way; more often than not with just a notepad and a guitar. Speaking of their writing process, the duo says that the songs are honed before entering the studio - "nothing gets recorded until we're both absolutely sure we love it" and that there is no creative imbalance when it comes to crafting their tracks - "it's 100% collaborative." This dreamlike ambience finds its way into the lyrics to an extent, but they take inspiration from all parts of everyday life as well. "Even though we start writing songs inspired by a dream, a film, or something someone said, they all become very personal [later on], so they're about our own experiences and feelings," the duo explains. For the live set-up, they play with a full band "because [they] really want to add that 'human' element to it. [...] We need the groove of real drums when we're on stage."
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