Fresh off his autumn tour with London Grammar, London producer-performer Sivu is currently recording his debut album. A breakthrough twelve months for Sivu has seen him release ‘Better Man Than He’ in Feburary, the ‘Bodies’ EP over the summer, and very recently, the 'I Lost Myself' EP. Sivu work portrays an immersive mix of introspective acoustics with glitchy electronics; as inspired by the lilting melodies of Frank Sinatra as the left-field pop of Beck, Sivu draws comparisons to another artist currently on the music industry's radar; East India Youth.
He has just unveiled brand new track 'I Hold' which is now available as a free download, and features Marika Hackman, ahead of their joint headline tour in December, and has been kind enough to answer some questions for us here at Fred Perry Subculture.
How would you describe your sound?
I think 'alternative pop' sums it up best currently.
Tell me about your recent tour with London Grammar
It was an incredible experience and and I'm so grateful to the band for taking me with them. They're brilliant and it was such a great opportunity for me to play my songs to a sold-out audience every night.
Tell me about your video filmed within an MRI Scanner – who thought of this brilliant idea?
The idea for the video was from director and good friend Adam Powell. As this was going to be the first thing that went online, I just wanted to ensure it was something different and something that would give a really strong first impression. Adam came up with the idea and approached Barts Hospital, as they are doing amazing stuff working with MRI machines which help treat clef pallet and speech impediment sufferers. They allowed us to come down and shoot the video. I am so thankful to everyone who helped make the video special.
Who did you grow up listening to?
The first record I ever bought was 'Surrender' by The Chemical Brothers: I still love that album. But I grew up listening to a huge mix: I always liked Frank Sinatra and Johnny Cash, but also become a huge fan of bands like The Deftones and At The Drive In during my teens. I'm lucky that my parents were also always playing music at home, too.
Where are you from? And what's the music scene like there?
I'm originally from a small town in Cambridgeshire called St.Ives. There isn't much of a music scene there, just mainly pub-gigs. It was a great place to learn how to perform, though: nothing builds your confidence quite like a drunk crowed who don't care.
What influences you, other than music?
I think people generally are a huge inspiration for me - just how someone can come and go from your life, but change so much (good and bad). I also watch a lot of films, which inspire me frequently.
What new music are you listening to at the moment?
When I was on tour recently, one of the bands played a Broken Social Scene cover. I'd never heard of the band before that and I haven't stopped listening to them since. Also, my ongoing love affair with Radiohead continues; currently re-discovering 'The Bends'
What's been the best show you've played recently and why?
The best show I have played recently was in Paris at Les Inrocks Festival: I've never played in France before and only played to a half full room, but their response was amazing and just so open to my songs. It was incredible.
Who are your biggest style Icons?
I love Jonny Cash: he had such a strong persona in terms of what he wore. I also love Graham Coxon, he always looks brilliant
If you could have any artist, dead of alive, cover you, who would it be?
I'd love Beck to rework one of my songs: he is a huge influence of mine. I'd love to see how far he would push one of my tracks.