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Bronte Evans | 19/03/2021

It was an unmitigated pleasure to spend my evening with LP discussing all things musical and delving deeper into some intimate subjects. Since hitting the music scene they have has international success with the smash hit ‘Lost On You’, written for mega-starts like Cher, Rihanna and Céline Dion, and released album after album each one filled with unique flares and melodies. I was in the presence of true musical royalty and if I’m being honest, massively fangirling.

Currently based in the States I first had to check-in and see how they were coping through these unprecedented times and see if the US has reached any semblance of normality.

“It’s about the same, it’s just weird. In the beginning, a lot of people were never so involved in listening or reading the news, I mean, yeah, I did, but not like I was the first six months and I could feel myself going down this rabbit hole. I don’t know about you guys, but a lot of people watched a documentary called ‘The Social Dilemma’. It was talking about how you can easily go down these rabbit holes and how your phone will just feed you like people are finding themselves suddenly, ‘Trumpers’ that maybe or definitely weren’t, and then they’re like, he might have a point.”

Since she brought up Trump, our chat turned to the media predicament in the US and I was eager to understand more. “I don’t know what it’s like in other countries but we have a real media problem here. Even since Trump was booted out, we have Fox News, which is just a pillar of absolute bullsh*t. They just don’t care and are just unconscionably f***ing throwing our entire moral compass out the window. Nobody has any idea what is going on right now. I mean, people do but it’s very easy to lose your way. I think that’s the thing, everybody has succumb to fear and doubt and loathing. I am no different.

“The biggest thing for me, because I’m usually always on tour and stuff, but I just have to stay in the moment more, and not kind of reduce my expectations. It’s kind of like watching a watched pot never boils like you just keep trying to go when it ends it’s like it’s not ending right now. So just kind of accept that this is where we’re at right now. And it’s going to end and, staying buoyant and positive for ourselves and other people is. I think community is really important right now, talking to people and being open about your feelings.”

I got exactly what LP meant with the rabbit-hole analogy. Throughout this time I slipped down the rabbit hole and got entirely obsessed by the news to the limit where it felt unhealthy and required a separation. I never followed the news to the degree I do presently but I did regularly keep up to date. We spoke about how my mindset has developed and how this experience has evoked more of a carefree feeling to seize the day and live in the moment.

“I think, what I’ve previously learned in my life from my lifestyle, my sexuality, and my career is there’s a lot of downtime. I got accustomed to waiting. I think on a positive note one of the things I was happy about myself in this whole thing was discovering I’m good at adapting, kind of because I’ve had to. I’m sure a lot of people, told me not to complain because there are people so much worse off and I’m so lucky I had a very, very big year coming - the biggest of my life thus far. So, when everything was put on hold, I think in the past, I might have, like, flipped the f**k out and been like, ‘Oh my god, now this is gonna happen.’ Then I just learned to think of this year as the sowing of the seeds, fertilising and planting seeds that will become fruit in a year or so, or less.”

“I had a song, a couple of songs actually, but one main song that changed my life, a great deal and I wrote it when one of the loves of my life was trying to leave me. My record company went from being behind me completely to not even caring. All these new people came in so everything was like sand falling through my hands. I remember thinking to myself before the song hit, God, that was a terrible year, 2014 what a terrible f***ing year. Then I realised, I wrote a bunch of songs which changed my life and things really kicked in. And so I try to think of this time like that for me and everybody you know, like learning what’s important, learning about yourself. Getting some mental tools or you know, relationships, not romantic or maybe romantic. But just like things that will kind of bear fruit. It helps to think of things like that, I think that we so often are so focused on the negative things and ignore the positive”

I wanted to know how LP sustained creativity throughout the pandemic. “I felt like it was cool for me because normally I would have had to work on this record from the road. I was home, and actually, I was able to even write more songs and work on them. Being home allowed it to be more hands-on, I wrote a bunch more songs that I was able to put into the pot to choose from. I had a bigger repertoire to choose from but I can’t think of anything more inspiring than a worldwide experience. It kind of never happened before you know, even though a lot of sad stuff has occured we have never been more connected to each other. No one’s gonna go like, ‘Hey, I remember the band.’ Oh, yeah. No, I don’t remember we had a pandemic!”

Although LP’s worldwide 2020 headline tour was unfortunately deferred due to COVID-19, they announced a Virtual World Tour to keep fans vibing, allowing listeners from across the globe to view collectively, unite and enjoy the hits, brand-new music, and fresh covers. I asked how the event went and how LP felt about the experience. “It was amazing. You know it’s weird to finish a song and have nobody clapping. I guess sometimes it had happened before when I was coming up and there’s like two people in the audience. But it is a weird experience to go like, ‘thank you, thank you’ and ... nothing ...just crickets. It’s a lot of acting there, but I knew people were with me, even though it wasn’t psychically, it felt good. It’s wild thinking of people, just seeing you in concert from their bedroom.”

‘One Last Time’ has recently hit the airwaves, this tune demands you to have it blasting as you create tonnes of memories amidst friends. LP described the sentiment following the release of this track. “I feel like it’s kind of right on time, it’s about enjoying what we have, reflecting on how good some things were and the fact you can do it all again. It’s like that old song ‘Those Were The Days’. Those days, my friends, that kind of sh*t. We have to remember that these are the things that we’ll be talking about in the future you know.”

“One of my managers had a baby at the end of 2019 and she just walked the first time and because they were both home they got it on video. This kid has had both of them as a captive audience this whole year. And it’s like, wow, like not many kids get that these days. So there will probably be some kids thinking back like wow that was the best time of my life when I had both my parents around all the time.”

“You know there’s just always something, not to be toxically positive as some people say, but there’s always something positive to be culled from what’s going on. And I think the song is trying to encapsulate that. It’s got a melancholy to it, but its also tyring to remind you fondly what you have.”

I adore the latest single ‘How Low Can You Go’ and even more so its a gorgeous music video, the shots were mesmerizing filmed at Hotel El Ganzo Mexico and directed by Eric Maldin. I ask what the inspiration behind the video was and why she chose that location.

“We didn’t write that song down there but we did write a lot of songs down there, around Cabo San Juan, where El Ganzo is this really cool, beautiful area. I believe that Elon Musk currently bought up a lot of property down there. People go to Cabo San Lucas a lot, but Cabo San Juan is more chill, and not as many people know, about it and it’s very easy to get to from LA.”

“It’s the most non-specific record on the album. It’s an amalgamation of several experiences that are basically what the nightlife experience seems to me. Because I think sometimes in the heart of having a quote on quote ‘great time’, especially like partying and all that stuff there’s also a little bit of like, Oh, am I going too far now? Am I like, on a downward spiral?”
Head Above The Clouds came to be to create safe spaces where prejudice around mental illness and suffering could be abolished. I wrapped up the conversation by asking LP what can improve in regards to mental health discourse and how we can cultivate more awareness and demolish the stigma.

“I think it is being taught in school from a young age and then reinforced by educators and people. It’s something that’s pretty much inherent in almost everybody, you know, a bad day is still a mental health day, and depending on what and who you come in contact with they can go down, like we were talking about earlier on in the conversation, a rabbit hole. The perception of what’s okay and what’s normal is so thin and it’s so easy to dip to the other side and suddenly find ourselves grasping for positive things. Everybody has everything inside them and what you’re living at the surface is not necessarily what’s down in there. We need more empathy and compassion and remember that it can be us at any second and know that it’s not a stigma, it’s just a thing.

“Mental health is a nice way to put it, but still calling it that categories it as a health issue specifically. It’s just an issue. Everybody has these pockets of depression and doubt. So we have to just be aware of that and be kind about it.”

One Last Time available now

Words: Bronte Evans
Photographer: Ryan Jay

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mattyvogel_lead-press-photo .jpeg

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mattyvogel_lead-press-photo .jpeg

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