Haunting and melodic dream pop/trip hop from Bristol four-piece
OSLO TWINS RELEASE DEBUT SINGLE
Release date: xx April 2021
“The track began as an expression of frustration, which led to its dark
undertones. When the lyrics and vocals were added, it was adapted
into something more positively defiant and romantic. The lyrics come from
a place of existential curiosity, and a longing for excitement
over ennui at any cost.”
Oslo Twins formed at Bristol University when students Eric Davies and Claudia Vulliamy got talking after a philosophy seminar. Both were making music, but each felt their work didn’t quite seem “finished”. Their skills were complementary and they began collaborating on tracks and writing together, leading to their first gig, along with new band members Luke Brown and Will Snelling, at Bristol’s Louisiana shortly before the pandemic hit.
While lockdown was a setback, it launched an intensely creative period for Oslo Twins, allowing them to add to their songbook and hone their distinctive sound, which they describe as “dream pop and trip hop - mostly electronic, but soft”. With backing from MAS Records they were able to organise production and collaborate with producers Ali Chant (Perfume Genius, Aldous Harding, PJ Harvey) and Seth Evans (who plays with HMLTD and Black Midi). Seth co-produced ‘The Edge’ with Oslo Twins at Hermitage Works Studios in North London where the likes of Goat Girl and Fat White Family have recorded.
Oslo Twins’ influences range from 80s new wave music (particularly the Fast Product / Postcard / Factory label releases) to Beach House, Portishead, Scandinavian electro (Susanne Sundfor, iamamiwhoami, I Break Horses, Anna von Hausswolf), Air, Lorde, FKA Twigs and the ‘Drive’ soundtrack.
“Our music is both melodic and melancholic but also subtly influenced by dance, industrial and lo-fi music of the 80s and 90s. But our melodies are pop melodies - we always like to have a hook.”
Production that references industrial music of the 80s (particularly Cabaret Voltaire), and trip hop bands of the 90s (Air, Portishead, Massive Attack, Lamb etc) is set alight by Claudia’s bewitching vocals, which range from the punchy, new wave-influenced open sound on ‘The Edge’ to an astonishing high range that can be both delicate and strong.
The songs often start out as self-produced Logic demos, which Eric and Claudia make together. Eric takes more of the production and beat making role and Claudia the lyrics and melodies, but this process varies from track to track which adds to the diversity of their sound.
During lockdown, they had to be inventive. Gigs - including two London dates - were cancelled and at the height of the pandemic in spring Eric set up a mini studio in a tiny storage shed, which allowed him to focus without distraction on new material.
“We wrote and recorded all of our demos in that period remotely; in one of our tracks, which ended up being co-produced by Ali Chant, the vocals are actually a voice note recorded on Claudia’s phone.” The second lockdown brought fresh hurdles. “When we were recording with Ali, Claudia’s housemates had caught covid while she’d been away, so she had to stay in a hotel. Then, halfway through production, the second lockdown began. It’s been hard work planning everything remotely and staying safe.”
Now Oslo Twins are excited to launch their music over the spring and summer - and can’t wait to get back to playing live again.