After having been away for a little while, Little Boots has just released her forthcoming single, ‘Every Night I Say A Prayer’, for Record Store and will have an album coming out later this year. I caught up with her ahead of her first London headline show this year at Shoreditch’s XOYO for a quick chat.
Are you looking forward to the show tonight?
I’m really looking forward to tonight. I’m so busy at the moment and it’s my birthday and I’ve never really had a gig on my birthday before so I’ve been trying to make it a really special gig. I’ve worked really hard and put a lot into it. It’s our first London gig for a while as well so I think afterwards I’m going to have this huge feeling of relief and probably go a bit mental. I always look forward to gigs and I think that the gig tonight should be a great gig.
You did Record Store day too and you released the vinyl. How do you feel about releasing vinyls. Will you release more vinyls?
I think that the important thing at the minute is that it’s so hard to sell songs anyway in any format so to try and push a physical record on people that you have to charge quite a bit for is difficult. People do buy them and there is a real collecter market for them and I think that that’s really nice. It’s something that I really enjoy designing with the guy that I do all of my visuals with but it’s just very difficult to do it for every release because music is in such a weird place right now. I do think that it’s really important though. I think that Record Store Day is important to celebrate physical formats of music really. I was really glad that we did it and it worked really well for that single and we released it through Trax and it was their first release in a while as well and I’m happy to be working with such a legendary label. It all came together as a really great thing but it’s difficult to see where vinyl will be in the future but if anything it’ll be more collectable than CDs. I think that it’s CDs people will be more worried about than vinyl.
When’s the album coming out?
The album’s coming out later this year. I’ll be very happy to have it out because it’s been a while since I’ve had an album out. I’m looking forward to getting it out there. It’s weird having all of this music that I know about that only about five other people have heard. It’s frustrating when things take a bit longer than you’d have liked them to but it’s cool.
How does it differ from Hands?
It’s hugely different. I’ve really been nerding up and reading about the origins of dance music from early disco through to house music and I got really into that whole thing. I’ve also really loved collaborating with James from Simian Mobile Disco and Andrew from Hercules and Love Affair. They love all of that stuff. The whole album isn’t going to be like that there’s still a lot of different pop influences but there’s definitely a dance angle to it that I’m really loving. There’s something about that’s really raw and physical. If you listen to old house records, there’s nothing in them; it’s all really physical as you have no idea what someone’s singing about. It’s more of a an interesting physical experience. I think that one of the main differences between this and the first album is that it is a lot emptier which I think is a really good thing because I’m paying a lot more attention to what sounds are in there and anything that doesn’t have a purpose just shouldn’t be in there. There’s no point in putting things in there that you know don’t really need to be there.
How did you go about writing this album?
Well, I’ve been writing a lot ever since we stopped touring the last album really the other year but it took a while to find the sound and the direction that I wanted to go with this album. I write with a lot of people and I write at home by myself and then when I found connections like Simian and Andy who I really clicked with and got on great in the studio with, I wrote a load more. It’s all a bit trial and error at first unless I wanted to go back to the things I did last time, which I didn’t because I really wanted to try something new then you have to do a bit of trial and error. Also, if you look at all of the great pop songs – not many of them are written by one person. I do write a lot on my own at home but it’s very difficult to be objective; you need that person to bounce off and to tell you what’s crap and what’s great. I came from a band so I was always used to writing with other people so being a solo artist is a different world but I’ve got my go-to collaborators for this record.
How did you meet them?
I’ve always been a big fan of Hercules and Love Affair and I’d been trying to get Andy to work with me for ages and then he came to one of my gigs and we got chatting and then the next time he was in London we hooked up. I’ve known James Ford for ages because of their managers. Just stuff like that really.
What can we expect from your new live show?
Well, I don’t want to give too much away. Tonight we tried to make it special with it being a one off show. We’re going to be playing some of the new songs. We’re going to try to make the set more of a dance show so rather than a pop show that’s stopping and starting all of the time, I want it to be more like a night out where you go out for the experience; you just get into the set rather than it stopping and starting and people shuffling around and then going to have a fag half way through the set. I just wanted to sweep people away and to be more of a continuous experience really. I’ve also learnt how to do visual programming now so I’ve spent a lot of time collecting footage that I want so hopefully all of the visuals should go perfectly alongside the music as I’ve been editing it and syncing it all as well; it’s what I was up until two o’ clock last night doing. Then we’ve got the dancers from the video that we just did so hopefully they’re going to come out and do a little surprise dance towards the end. I just really like to try and make shows special. I had a little party for ‘Shake’ towards Christmas and that was nice. We’re not really doing any touring at the minute; we’re just doing a lot of one off shows. I think that I’d rather do one off things and give them more time and care and attention. At the moment, it’s really hard to get people to buy gig tickets as it is so if you can make it a really special night rather than just another gig, I think that that’s a really good thing. It’s just the little things, for example, we’ve decorated the bar with all of the decorations that we’ve made and we’ve designed cocktails and given them silly names. I was reading up on all of the early days of disco about the parties that they used to put on in little lofts in New York and they used to have cakes out and balloons and make it a bit more of a party so everyone would just be getting fucked to weird early disco music and I want to get that feeling of it being more like someone’s party and make it a bit more personal. I guess that’s hard in bigger venues. It’s nice that we’re doing it here.
Will you do a tour which is a bit like this?
I would love to. We will definitely tour later on in the year but it would really nice to do this sort of thing in a couple more places. It is to do it hard though, even the amount of work that has been put into this one show has been a lot but I would love to do it. I guess we’ll just see how things go and try and make it the best that we can. I also don’t like just playing in London all of the time. I’m not from London. I used to get quite pissed off when big bands would only play in London. I used to get the train to Manchester for gig so I do get pissed off when people do always just play in London. I don’t want to do that so I definitely want to get out and about as I understand how annoying it is for people. It’s expensive to get down to London.
Words: Katie Wilkinson