Seemingly coming out of nowhere, Scottish electropop band Chvrches rose to worldwide fame when their single Lies went viral, and this September they released their debut album The Bones Of What You Believe. With an ongoing tour and a short stop in Stockholm, we had the pleasure of talking to them.
With electronica as the main force, Chvrches’ music also carries an air of pop and shoegaze. Hailing from Glasgow, Scotland, members Iain Cook, Martin Doherty and Lauren Mayberry all played in various indie bands before forming their trio in 2011. Iain and Martin have known each other since university, while Iain and Lauren met through work a few years ago.
– I did the vocals, and played the drums and keyboard in the band Blue Sky Archives that Iain produced an EP for, Lauen says. Afterwards he contacted me about another project he had started with Martin that they wanted to work with me on. After playing for many years in indie rock bands we realized there was a big part of music we hadn’t explored our creativity in before; electronic music. We started working together in a studio in Glasgow for months, and later on this became Chvrches.
We are a band that was born
on the internet
After months in the studio, writing and working on their first singles, Chvrches made their debut with the single Lies in May 2012. Another eighteen months of studio work resulted in the debut album The Bones Of What You Believe, released this September.
– We are influenced by a lot of synth and pop in our music, such as Depeche Mode, Prince, Robyn, Whitney Houston, and the Cocteau Twins, to name a few. Our legacy from Glasgow shows as well, since there is an air of shoegaze in our music.
While working on their debut album, the band also did a great deal of live shows, including a guest appearance at Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and support acts for the likes of Depeche Mode, Passion Pit, and Two Door Cinema Club.
– Many electronic bands can play some tunes from a computer with an added vocalist on stage, but we all come from bands that play live shows. It is important to us to keep that live show feeling, and we feel like it’s really coming together on stage.
Chvrches can thank the internet for their first glimpse of fame, but being born on the world wide web also has it’s downsides.
– We are a band that was born on the internet, Lauren explains. Our first single went viral and after that we’ve been quite busy, which is fantastic. We found it hard in the beginning to translate something recorded on Soundcloud to playing it live in front of a lot of people, but it’s exciting in so many ways. The internet shows a bad side though, and that is the idea of me being the girl who does the vocals, while the guys produce the music. This was something we discussed a lot during our studio time in Glasgow. We wanted to be represented in media as a three piece, who are all equally involved in the creating the music. Not everyone understands that, but we try our hardest to be represented in this way.
Chvrches performs at Debaser Medis in Stockholm on October 30.
Read Lauren Mayberry’s open letter about sexism in the music industry for The Guardian here.