The emerging pop duo made up of Katie Benbow and Sophie-May Williams are ready to make their mark in music with first single Johnny. The dark track is full of introspective lyrics, addictive beats and killer vocals. The Brighton based duo is heavily influenced by legends Nina Simone, Grace Jones, and Depeche Mode, and more making it impossible to put their music into one category. With such an amazing start and carving their own unique spot in music, we can’t wait to see what these two bring to the table!
We got a chance to chat with HOURGLVSS about everything from their new single JOHNNY, their creative process when making music, and more…
The sound for your debut single JOHNNY is out of this world! Can you guys go into the making of this track?
Thank you! So, we actually wrote it with a producer called Ben Christophers. He’s worked with the likes of Bat For Lashes and even Francoise Hardy- the aristocrat of 60s French pop music. We’ve worked with him loads ever since but ‘Johnny’ was the first track we wrote and recorded with him and we all just gelled musically straight away. The whole process of ‘Johnny’ was one of us really finding and honing in on what we wanted the HOURGLVSS sound to be. We were so lucky to be able to work with Ben, he’s one of the most talented people we’ve ever come across and working with him really was a defining moment in our music making so far. He also makes us really great tea.
The lyrics to this track seem very personal, when writing the song did you two pull from any life experiences?
When we write lyrics, we always try to delve deep into the concept and our own personal experiences. It’s important to lay yourself bare in the lyrics. For us, ‘Johnny’ was no exception. We find that’s the beauty of being in a duo. We have two different minds and two different outlooks on the world.
Can you describe your creative process when making music? What are the necessities for a studio session order to make a song that you both love?
Our creative process when making music is always very different as every song we write is always very different. It’s hard to pin an exact method we use as when we write we adhere to the mood and vibe that has presented itself at that moment. Our lyrics are what make our songs so specifically ours. We love language, so to make us fall in love with one of our songs, the lyrics have to be well thought through, captivating and relatable.4: Can you go into how the group HOURGLVSS came to be? We both made music individually prior to being in the duo and after we got introduced to each other by a mutual friend, we discovered we had almost everything in common, including songwriting, music and just the creative arts. After a few beers one night we decided to have a little sing song and ended up forming the silhouette for what would become HOURGLVSS.
Are there an artist’s that heavily influence you guys and your music?
Oh wow. We always say this is one of the hardest questions to answer, there’s just so many artists that have inspired us both musically and visually. To narrow it down, we would have to say, naturally, David Bowie, Annie Lennox, Grace Jones, Depeche Mode, Shakespear’s Sister, Cocteau Twins, Roxy Music and Mystery Jets. A major cite of influence visually would be the Velvet Underground & Nico, with Andy Warhol’s ‘Exploding Plastic Inevitable’ – we try to make our shows a spectacle. We want to combine music, art and fashion and essentially create the HOURGLVSS world that we have envisioned for so long.
If you could collaborate with any artist who would it be and why?
Dead or alive? We would love to collaborate with someone like Grace Jones or Stevie Nicks. They have such strong identities and visuals and are leading female inspirations, even to this day. Imagine hoola hooping with Grace Jones or swirling around the stage in a gypsy dream with Stevie Nicks. If we could resurrect someone though, it would be Bowie or Prince. No explanations needed.
Can we expect more music from HOURGLVSS this year?
We want to start making waves in the Brighton music scene and create a new visionary world that has not been seen before.We will be releasing ‘Johnny’ on the 19th April and from there will be promoting and gigging the track. We are constantly writing so hopefully we will be spilling more and more music of your fantasy pop dreams. We want HOURGLVSS to be so much more than a band. We want it to be a whole new universe that can be eaten like an ice cream on a super hot sunny summer’s day.
Make sure to check out JOHNNY below!