gl have a new album, a new tour and very little spare time
Ahead of their i-D presented national tour, we catch a moment of calm with the Melbourne party darlings to talk about their debut album ‘Touch’.
Photography Dan Soderstrom via Facebook
Ella Thompson and Graeme Pogson are getting ready for a big week. The two friends behind Melbourne party darlings GL have briefly paused from mushing soul, funk, electro and pop into a delicious dance hybrid for two big announcements: their debut LP Touch is out and they're going on a national tour. We bet their mums are stoked.
Touch sticks to the band's favourite themes, namely physical love and all the giddy/ghastly stuff that brings. But fans don't need to worry that their favourites are descending into a well of overworked emotions, being such skilled purveyors of disco-pop, the band manages to speak from the heart while making sure you never want to stop dancing. Before they head off to hand out memorable nights and heart palpitations around the nation, we stole a quiet moment to see how they're feeling during this very exciting time.
Congrats on the drop of Touch, do you celebrate something like this?
Graeme: Thanks! We actually just got off a flight, we had to wake up so early. I think I might celebrate with some sleep, first.
Ella: I might go out for a nice breakie, actually.
Very responsible. So this album explores the concept of physical love — always a popular topic — but why did you set out to tackle it?
Ella: I guess it came from a bit of personal coming of age, and just being able to love the physical in all its forms. Growing up, you have all sorts of insecurities, but I feel like this album taught us a lot about owning and enjoying your physical space as a performer. Letting go of those physical inhibitions.
It's more about physicality than romance, which begs the question, is it an album to hook up to?
Graeme: Actually, I was thinking about that… no. I don't think so. There's some pretty rude, aggressive snare drum sounds.
Ella: I think perhaps break-up sex would be good to this album.
Always good to go after a niche market. Getting back to the actual album, you guys get pretty experimental: longer instrumentals and even some New Jack Swing. How was it bringing that sense of spontaneity to an LP?
Graeme: Good! Being longer the album gave us room to try different things, not necessarily four on the floor stuff, but more interesting stuff that works when you look at everything as a whole.
Ella: I think with the New Jack Swing we whipped out at a couple of live shows, we thought it was a bit silly actually, but then some friends were like, "that's our favourite song!"
That's the luxury of a full album, you don't need to be fixated on bangers. But you're about to go on tour, so those bangers will come in handy. You're so busy, what do you do in your downtime?
Ella: Hmmm, I eat… and sleep. The basic human requirement stuff.
Graeme: Yeah, but all in all we spend most of our time making music, or working day jobs so we can continue making music. But we like it that way.
Living and breathing it.
Graeme: Yeah, (laughs) gasping for air.
Saturday 3 September at Rocket Bar, Adelaide
Saturday 10 September at Howler, Melbourne
Friday 16 September at The Foundry, Brisbane
Saturday 17 September at Newtown Social Club, Sydney
i-D are giving away double passes to their shows in Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney. Email your city to firstname.lastname@example.org to enter.
Text Amy Campbell