troye sivan can’t wait for you to hear these songs
The popstar du jour gives i-D exclusive info on the songs that might just make the cut for his forthcoming album.
Troye Sivan’s new album is 98% done. We’re not sure how numerically accurate that figure is, but it’s what the 22-year-old pop promised when we chatted over some miso soup at his London hotel recently.
After a monumental promo tour that led to him to performing live on America’s Two Favourite TV Shows™ (that’s Saturday Night Live followed by The Ellen show, btw), Troye Sivan is pop’s hottest commodity right now. He’s gone from YouTuber-slash-bedroom musician to fully-fledged star, and with a new record dropping at some point in the near future, his success is set to keep skyrocketing.
Right now though, Troye is just revelling in the beauty and excitement of the pop life he’s carved out for himself. “I feel like it’s everybody’s dream,” he says. “It’s 100% as fun to make a music video as you imagine, and I get to do it as a job. I have these moments all the time where I’ll laugh to myself, because I’ll be like, ‘I’m getting an inside experience of the world that I’d completely die for.’”
While most of the songs on Troye’s follow-up to very good, critically-acclaimed Blue Neighborhood are still under wraps, we did ask him about a couple of the things he’s excited to share with his fans. One of them, he said, is a song called Animal, which he describes as “a five-minute, 80s stadium love song”. Sold.
“The perfect pop song is 3:30 [long], but I wanted to break out of that,” he says. “So we started on piano and had this lyric: “I want you all to myself / Don’t leave none for nobody else / I am an animal with you,” and worked our way outwards, slowly but surely adding little pieces to turn it into this epic profession of love.”
We mention that his comeback single, the practically perfect My, My, My, has been labelled “sexy af” by i-D and an epic anthem by the rest of the world, which he happily takes as a compliment. “I love anthemic music that makes you want to sing in a big group of people,” he says. “I think I subconsciously wrote this album for the tour. I’m totally imagining this big, epic live show -- that influences a lot of the musical choices I make.”
Troye’s first exposure grandiose pop shows came from watching tour DVDs with his dad as a kid: “Phil Collins, Led Zeppelin, Michael Jackson and Madonna -- stuff like that, you know? It was always those big and grand, borderline-cheesy shows. I die for all of that stuff.”
But for all of his love of anthemic pop, Troye’s favourite line on the new album comes from a song about his boyfriend and a lost postcard. “One time I wrote my boyfriend a postcard from Tokyo. He’s the most scatterbrained person in the world and I love him for it!” Troye explains, reeling off the tale with every minute detail, including how closely he worked with the electro-folk Aussie artist Gordi to sonically tell the story. “He missed it at the front door so had to go to the post office. Four or five days went by and he finally went to go get it, but by that point the post office had lost it. I thought it kinda sucked. It was one of those first moments where you realise that your partner isn’t perfect.”
So, what was that line in question that Troye loves so much? “It starts off with: ‘I sent you a postcard from Tokyo baby, you never picked it up.’ At first the song feels quite angry, but it opens up to a song about how there’s more to a relationship than things like that, and you can work past stuff -- looking past your partner’s minor flaws and enjoying the good stuff instead.”
What exactly Troye wants his next album to sound like is still TBC, so he can’t confirm that the postcard song will make the final cut. But right now, he’s very into it. “It’s a super weird song that felt like it came from the heart,” he smiles. “Like a sweet sentiment!”
Troye Sivan’s new album is due out sometime in the next few weeks, or months, or years. The songs he discussed here may or may not be on the record, so don’t @ us if his faves don’t make the cut!