EQ is definitely loving the stylish and sexy synth sounds of State City Disco and we got a chance to catch up with Alex and Mitzi from the band to talk about Temposhark, 80’s influence in today’s music, how they got their name and what the heck happened to Veto Silver!
Well hello State City Disco and welcome to EQ. Go on introduce yourselves to the readers…
We’re a new electro-pop band whose sound could be best described as Nick Rhodes meets Lady Sovereign and they go and set fire to a pile of tyres in a car park in Peckham, while drinking Bacardi Breezers. But in a good way. State City Disco in your face – LOL.
Cool – now that we got that out of the way, tell us about ‘Excitement’. Are you excited about this track? We sure are…
So are we!!! It is the musical equivalent of eating a whole box of Party Rings and washing it down with two litres of undiluted orange squash. We love it. ‘Stand up take notice’.
So how did you come up with the name ‘State City Disco’?
We thought it would be interesting to combine two apparently opposing concepts – the authority of the State with the frivolity of the Disco. It’s about being your own nation state, making your own rules and having a party in the process.
So Alex, you used to be in Veto Silver didn’t you? One minute you guys were a promising electro band and the next minute – poof – you broke up. What the heck happened there?!
Alex: Well it was just one of those things. I had a great time with Ben and Neal from Veto Silver but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be. I think everyone had had enough really.
So Mitzi – tell us how you met Alex and why you decided to form State City Disco together.
Mitzi: We were shopping for affordable jewelery at Claire’s Accessories in Croydon. He looked at me across the earring stand and saw that I had on a Duran Duran badge. We got talking about music and how he wanted to form a new, superior pop band. I told him about my mad synth skillz, and we decided to hook up and form the group.
You guys definitely owned the house at your last performance at Popshow. Did you guys have a good time performing that night? Any other gigs lined up?
Alex: Thanks well we do try! We had a great time and would love to do that again. We got more gigs coming up and everyone’s invited!
Mitzi: I certainly had a good time on stage – I love the performance aspect of being in a band. We have a gig at the Oh! Bar on October 10th and we’re playing a couple of good club nites too. More details to follow soon…
So what’s going on with the music – EP or album in the works? What sort of response have you gotten from people?
We’ve written a lot of new material recently and are in the middle of having it mixed and produced. We intend to start by putting a single and EP on iTunes by the end of the year. We would like to follow that with an album. Our song ‘No Mamma’ is going to be featured on a compilation by the ‘Some Bizarre’ label. We’ve had a lot of interest from DJs asking to play our songs in clubs, from as far afield as Chile!
So we’ve been going on and on about how much you guys remind us of The Human League. Cringeworthy or a good comparison – Are we WAY off the mark?
Alex: They are a great band and I take it as a compliment but but I’m not really influenced by them – but it’s a good start!
Mitzi: I love The Human League, especially the slightly darker first two albums, so I don’t mind the comparison and can see that we have some things in common with them – we play catchy electronic pop songs and don’t mind putting on makeup and prancing about a bit.
Tell us about some of your other tracks on your MySpace page – like ‘Bring It On’ for example…
Alex: ‘Bring It On’ is rather jolly isn’t it. It’s us showing our silly disco side. There should always be room for a bit of flippancy in pop music. It’s meant to be entertainment after all. We want to do a remix of it with more laser sounds. ‘No Mamma’ is an aggressive electro track which is a great one to perform and ‘Girls And Boys’ – Its about SEX everybody!
So how much of the 80’s goes into your songwriting. Is this resurgence of 80’s electronica going to last?
Alex: I love the 80s sound especially Prince, David Bowie and The Eurythmics and many more. I am also influenced by 90s hip-hop and all genres and decades and love to hear new up-to-date sounds like producers such as Timbaland so we have a very broad influence that’s goes into our songwriting, I think the 80s sound has always come and gone since to 80s, but I think the songwriting from the 80s has a classic feel to it so it can transcend to new listeners.
Mitzi: I’m inspired by early 80’s pop bands like Duran Duran and Japan, because their songs were very tuneful and had great lyrics. I like using the fat synth sounds and driving basslines that were used in early 80’s synth-pop. They make for a really powerful sound. These elements also feature in a lot of current electronica, so I don’t think they’re intrinsically 80’s. I think now 80’s music has come to be appreciated again, it will continue to influence people because such a lot of great, innovative music and fashion came from that decade. However, bands that just copy 80’s bands wholesale and don’t add anything new to the mix won’t have much of a future.
We recently put you into our EQ Fold of talented musicians to watch out for. If you could work with any of the other EQ Fold musicians, which ones would you die to get alone with in a studio?
Temposhark and Robyn would be our favourites to work with as they write catchy songs and have their own distinctive sounds.
Speaking of, with Robyn and Darren Hayes both scoring chart hits and Top 20 album sales as indie artists – does that give you hope that the record industry is changing?
Yes, it shows that ‘indie’ doesn’t have to mean guitar bands, for a start! The major labels will always have a lot of influence, but the internet has made it a lot easier for bands to get their material heard.
You like Temposhark too we noticed – what do you think of ‘The Invisible Line’?
It’s sounding good – nice production! There’s quite a wide variety of styles on there too, which is good. My favourites are the more dancey songs, like ‘Crime and Joy’.
And finally – you get the age old question of questions…What is your definition of the word ‘Electroqueer’. It’s a weird word – we know…
Something or someone that channels the power of electricity to create something modern, strange and marvelous!
Any parting words for our readers?
Thank you for your attention! Our glorious Nation State has approved your application for citizenship in our land of synthesized sounds, neon lights and government-subsidized hairspray. And don’t forget to get our EP when we release it. Take care everyone!
Thanks Alex and Mitzi! If you’d like to download their track ‘Girls And Boys’ to get more acquainted with Mitzi’s mad synth skills and Alex’s punky vocals you can do so here. Don’t forget to give ‘Excitement’ a quick play in the ‘Music On The Verge’ section too!