grrl pal's perfect guide to perth
The joyful musical duo from the West Coast discuss coming second to Kanye while showing us around their home town.
Photography Samantha Hughes
Jay Le Kat and Danny K are Grrl Pal, a duo making perfectly formed, synth pop from their basement in Perth. They seem genuinely excited about their lives and music and equally buzzed about coffee, vintage clothes, green juices, books and everything in between. Their optimism for life is as inspiring as their songs. Jay is a strong, dreamy-voiced front-woman and their beats are effortlessly experimental.
Honing their skills with British producer and all-rounder Parker Ighile, who's also worked with the likes of Nicki Minaj and Rita Ora, Jay and Danny have determined to release a song every month for the year of 2015 and so far they've been successful.
Meet the adorable duo as they take us on a trip to their favourite places to hang in Perth, Australia.
How did you guys meet?
Jay: We went to school together. We were the new kids at the same time but Danny didn't like me, he thought I was annoying.
Danny: Ha. After school we became friends and we started making music together. Jay was looking for someone to join her band with and it was good timing because a crazy mum was trying to manage the band I was in so that was never going to work.
What was behind your decision to release a song a month?
Danny: You've got to do something a bit different these days. It's all about content and making yourself a bit vulnerable. No one is perfect and no one wants to hear perfect, so we're just putting out the best songs we can every month. Self imposed deadlines are good, we'd be going forever otherwise.
Some of your songs are getting good listens. Paradise has almost 200K plays. Is it weird seeing people listen to your music in real-time?Jay: Yeah, you can use it as a little experiment to see what people respond to.
Danny: Paradise was Parker's favourite song of ours when we were working with him, so we released it first. It went crazy on Hype Machine. There'd be 1K plays overnight and then we woke up one day and there'd been over 70K plays and we were like WTF? We were just under Kanye, Paul McCartney and Rihanna. It never overtook Kanye but it was close.
What do you tend to write about?
Jay: Funny things that happen in relationships. Or we'll watch a movie and a character will inspire us, like Dory or Marlin from Finding Nemo. We start writing and the idea forms itself.
Danny: Our lives are pretty interesting and we have interesting stories to tell. We are like small town kids - we get to Sydney and we are awe-struck.
JAY: I go here erry day after a very early morning yoga sesh. The coffee is ALWAYS really great, the staff are always really friendly and funny and they have super cute pot plants. And today we got free chocolate croissants. Whats not 2 love?
JAY: This is where I like to buy books to motivate us to learn things… about cats and coffee. Sometimes maybe to indulge in a guilty pleasure like Harry Potter or something great like that. They also have really pretty cushions that you can buy to sit on while you are reading your book.
JAY: I spend all of my monies on glittery thangs 4 the stage and sometimes it's funny to make Danny wear a pretty dress. These ladies have the BEST collection of exciting pretty outfits! And they always look very fabulous as well.
Dan: So this place hasn't opened yet… but hometown heros the Pilerat/metric boys bought it and are turning it into the place Perth needs on a night out! It is definitely going to be our new favourite spot. A 1950s style diner that serves fries all night run by the gr8 boys from Metric Promotions. It is going to be fab. We will be regulars 4 sure. And we are also playing there soon YAY YAY YAY.
Dan: Best place to buy jeans and other pretty casuaaaal clothes, run and owned by the living rock legend Nick Sheapard. Plus my best mate works here too but he wasn't there when we visited. He makes videos under the name Flathat. Funny.
JAY: There is literally always something pretty to look at in Leederville, whether it be pretty clothes in Atlas Divine or pretty green smoothies or pretty bunting or pretty cake or a pretty burger… and at night they have a big tree covered in fairy lights all year round.
DAN: The 24 hour IGA used to stock my favourite gluten free treat.. then they stopped and I tweeted a complaint and they followed us back and didn't sort out re-stocking the treat. IGA this is your last warning. Thanks.
Text Briony Wright
Photography Samantha Hughes