Malory's new EP 'Dystopia' storms in from left-field with an ode to post-apocalyptic love
Off the back of her two most recent lead singles ‘Rapture’ and ‘Nuclear Brandy,’ multitalented pop artist Malory is set to release her first full EP ‘Dystopia’. Her left-field take on pop has already received plaudits and support from critics and fans alike. And Dork magazine has called her a "Pop star in waiting.”
Studio sessions across Toronto, LA and London have helped shape her striking sonic blueprint, calling to mind Lorde, Fiona Apple and Marina and the Diamonds. The new EP was co-produced with Danny George and the pair have delivered a treat for the ears, full of charm, wit and musical expression - juxtaposing dark chaos and joyous celebration within it.
Meaww caught up with Malory for an email interview to discuss the new EP, her musical tastes and influences and the story of her musical journey among other things. Here's what we got:
When did you first start performing?
I suppose in my living room aged 6? My sister and I would make up songs and dance routines which are hilarious to watch on home movies now... But as an artist and songwriter, aged 14. I remember playing in a pub in Wandsworth, I got up with my ukulele and played a really sad song. Pretty nerve-wracking but years of gigging later, I've certainly improved and come into my own.
Who are your biggest influences?
In terms of songwriting, Bob Dylan, Carole King, Regina Spektor and Fiona Apple. I've also been a massive Randy Newman fan and the legend Ry Cooder, but recently my influences have varied and become more contemporary and genre-crossing.
What kind of music do you like listening to? Can we have a link to a playlist/mixtape that you particularly enjoy?
So many different types! From Lorde to Rex Orange County, MØ to Honne, Declan McKenna to Alt J. But I'm secretly pretty old school and have an obsession with the Great American Songbook, swing and Jazz, so take a listen to this one :
If you had to pick just one artist/band that you would like to collaborate with in the near future, who would it be?
SuperParka! I found them super recently but their music is soooo vibe. I listen to 'Skip' on repeat and it just transports you. I think they're also playing at The Great Escape so I'm gonna see if we can collab!
What’s the story behind the name of your EP?
The catalyst for the name was actually my track 'Nuclear Brandy' which is about an apocalyptic romance in a bunker. I realized things were happening in my life and in the world which felt as though everything was great but there was something dark that was hidden too. The whole EP is this conflict between light and dark, a juxtaposition and I just felt as though Dystopia was the best way to describe it.
Can we have a quick track-by-track breakdown of the songs from your EP?
Rapture: Anthemic indie track with tribal drums and a huge vocal sound! This one was inspired by Oh Wonder and Layla.
Nuclear Brandy: An apocalyptic love affair with otherworldly synths, sounds and beats. Inspired by Blast from The Past and my own fears of the world ending...
Cold Vibrations: A really groovy, upbeat pop vibe, in the sort of Izzy Bizu vein. It has loads of harmonies and attitude, a perfect summer track.
Real Love: Epic ballad, piano-based, warm, emotive and one that is super close to my heart. It's definitely an unexpected EP ender but so far people have been very pleasantly surprised by it!!
Who produced the EP? What was it like in the studio during the production?
Danny George and I produced the EP but Jamie Evans and I wrote Nuclear Brandy. It was a big experiment for me as I came from a more folk/pop background and although had worked in plenty of studios before, I never had a 'sound'. So the whole experience of creating Dystopia was totally uplifting and inspiring. We worked out of Metropolis Studios which was a great place to be and just focused on each track, drawing the nectar out until we were both super excited and happy with it.
If you had to pick one favorite among all your tracks, which one would it be and why?
Although Rapture has been the fan favorite, my personal fave is Real Love. When I wrote it I just got the most wonderful feeling. Like it was always meant to be written as if the universe was saying, okay you're ready for this one to come out. It's just an honest portrayal of my emotions at that point in my life and still gives me chills performing it live.
What was the greatest challenge that you faced while recording your music?
Definitely accepting that there is no such thing as perfection and trying to reach it will ruin the vibe of what you're recording. I would often do a vocal take thinking it was terrible and my producer would think I was crazy. So it's about finding a middle ground and not being too hard on yourself.
Any new collaborators that you’ve been working with / plan to collaborate with?
Lots! I've been writing with the fabulous Delaire, Mia Nicolai and Louud. Hopefully, I'll meet a few talented people at TGE and start on some new work! I do have a sort of top secret project I'm working on with someone amazing but all will be revealed soon enough.
Slightly off topic, but Vinyl or digital? What’s your preferred format and why?
As much as I'd love to say I'm super trendy and insist on listening to everything on vinyl the convenience of digital takes over in my life. Maybe I should invest in a good player one of these days and convert... But then again I wouldn't be able to link my tunes to Alexa... haha
What do you think about music streaming? Do you think it’s helpful or harmful for up and coming artists?
As a listener it's amazing. But as a creator of music, it's difficult to earn a living as it is let alone with streaming! Of course, there are pros and cons, it's great that people can access your music quickly and internationally but I would be lying if I said it's a fair system monetarily speaking.
Any plans of touring soon?
Hopefully! I've been guilty of being London centric but I know this is going to change soon. A couple of dates around the UK would be awesome and venturing to Europe could be on the cards...
What can we expect next?
To expect the unexpected! I'm definitely going to be releasing more music - that is certain and continue to write for other amazing artists so keep your ears and eyes peeled.