Say Lou Lou: ‘There’s a sense of revolution in the air – gender boundaries are disintegrating’

‘Everyone is creating their own universe and gets to live by their own rules’

Say Lou Lou have unveiled the dramatic video for new single ‘Golden Child’ – and have spoken to NME about how second album ‘Immortelle’ is about ‘breaking free from boundaries and expectations’.

The Swedish-Australian twin sisters will drop their second album ‘Immortelle’ later this month – following on from their acclaimed 2015 debut ‘Lucid Dreaming’, after they made the longlist for the BBC’s Sound Of 2014.

Having launched the album with lead single ‘ANA’, now the duo return with the dramatic video for ‘Golden Child’ – a track that explores “how tricky and confusing cultural and patriarchal structures can be in your self-discovery”.

“When we came out of the last whole album process, we just felt very tired,” Miranda Kilbey told NME. “We were longing for some sort of freedom – both as women and creatives. You can get that in so many different ways – like breaking free from what anyone is expecting from you, breaking free from invisible shackles of the roles that you’re expected to play as a woman or as a person from a certain place. It’s about challenging yourself and those ideals”

She continued: “Us making this record was us going through so many different versions of ourselves. In the music community, it can be viewed as something that’s bad when you’re very aesthetically-driven. You know? Like ‘if you have a strong identity in the fashion world, then surely you can’t have a good or acquired taste in music’. Or ‘you’re two young Swedish twins, so how can you know so much about music?’ Of course I know about music, that’s what I do! Of course I’ve heard these records!’ We love to assume that women who look a certain way, are a certain way.”

Sister Elektra Kilbey added: “We’re guilty of that too. I remember being prejudiced to a lot of female pop artists when I was younger when they had a certain type of look or were selling their brand in a certain way. I was surprised when they turned out to be different because that’s how we’re programmed.

“We need to allow everyone to be multi-dimensional and be more than one thing. I think that’s what 2018 has given us. Everyone is creating their own universe and gets to live by their own rules. There’s not one set of rules that apply to all artists. With major labels and the industry, we can’t quantify things anymore. This is my life, these are the roles I want to play.”

While work on ‘Immortelle’ started long ago, the sisters said that they were pleased to be returning to music in 2018 as attitudes were changing towards women in the industry.

“No one looks back and refers to David Bowie as ‘a fashion artist’,” said Elektra. “You refer to him as a multi-faceted creative artist. Now, all of those things are slowly, surely and thankfully being disintegrated.”

Miranda went on: “During our break, while we have been working on our stuff, it feels like there has been a sense of revolution in the air. So many boundaries and borders are disintegrating and that’s allowing people to be fluid, in whatever way they want to be fluid. It’s allowing people to see that the old way was very, very limiting.”

Say Lou Lou

Arriving on September 21, Say Lou Lou’s ‘Immortelle’ takes the band past the polished pop-noir of their debut and towards more dramatic instrumentation, drawing from both and the past and future.

“The whole record is not necessarily trip-hop, moody or bombastic,” said Miranda. “There are parts of the song that have those elements, but there are small little worlds within that universe. We have a Russian Tango, we have a pop-rock song, some disco.”

Describing the record’s “grand ambition”, Elektra said: “It’s definitely an ode of what’s been and what’s to come. It’s a combination of classic cinema and string arrangements, but combining that with a warmer electronic element.”

“The visuals are also a journey from the past into the future too. It’s a cross-fertilization of the 1800s into the future.”