Chatting about music, life and anxiety with the famous British band.

There is something about listening to London Grammar’s music that makes you feel so many emotions at once that you might not know how to process them. To be honest, the first time I listened to their single Strong, I started crying on my way back home. I couldn’t believe that a song was able to sum up so perfectly everything I’ve had buried inside. And I know I am not the only one

From Hannah Reid’s captivating voice to the perfect melodies created by Dan Rothman and Dominic “Dot” Major, there is something for everyone to enjoy in their songs. No matter what is your relation with their music, you have to admit that their success story and quick rise to fame, before a four year hiatus is intriguing by itself. Not many bands chose to keep a low profile after their first album peaked at the top of the charts. For London Grammar’s members, it was more a way to keep their mental state in check than a strategic choice.

“We definitely took it too far with our first tour. I was losing my voice and canceling shows all the time. It was turning into a bit of a disaster really. We couldn’t handle the pressure anymore. So we when came home, for at first three months off, we decided we didn’t want to push it this much for the second album” explains Hannah.

This break allowed them to start working from a fresh perspective on some new material, while making sure they would never have to go back to the same emotionally and phsycially draining phase. Meanwhile, fans were coming to them and their entourage, asking if the band was done and gone forever.

“At that time, we were in the studio focusing on the second album so we weren’t paying attention all the time at what was going on around. So, I think being in that world of creation, we were just shut away and by ourselves. Still, we were grateful that people were worried about us and supporting us. Cause, of course, you worried a little about people and what they might think of you as a band. But since we came back with the second album, the support has been amazing and it’s quite overwhelming to be honest” says Dan.

Such a long break in a career comes  with its share of mutations in the formation as creative beings, but also as individuals. Going back to the studio to create together wasn’t easy at first.

“We definitely all evolved individually and you know, we all have different tastes in music and things we like and don’t like in general. So, naturally when we came back after having spent some time on our own for the first time in two or three years, we had evolved as musicians in our own way. It was definitely tricky to bring that together, but I think once we agreed on the general sound we were looking for for the album, it became more clear what it was going to be. After that, it was easier to continue to evolve as a trio” explains Dot.

If they had to adjust to a new sound, Reid’s very personal lyrics are still at the center of most of their songs. She is even more exposed than before, while declaring her incapacity to love her significant other the way she should. In Rooting For You, she sings I’d love to always love you/But I’m scared of loneliness/When I’m, when I’m alone with you. A refreshing honesty that the singer doesn’t seem to think too much about.

 

“I think…(long pause)...I find it really hard to judge in terms of lyrics what is different on the second album. Cause it still came like the same way as the other one. It’s just pure expression and I don’t really think about it that much.Sometimes, when I am uncomfortable in the studio or if I feel too much tension, I find it hard to be really really honest regarding the lyrics I wrote. Which is why we are such good friends, cause we have each other back in that kind of moment. But I do think the album sound is quite different. It’s definitely a step forward regarding our musical evolution” expresses Hannah.

This way of exposing themselves through their music, while keeping their private life a personal matter is something that you can admire about London Grammar, especially at times where everyone scream for attention on social media.

“I do think that you can still keep the mystery and for us, to keep you know that part of our lives separate is important. It also depends a lot on the person. I think in the end it might affect the music too much and it is something we don’t want to happen. Cause in the end, you know, it’s still about the music first” ends  Hannah.

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