In an industry saturated by music that’s scared to step out of its comfort zone, it’s always refreshing to see artists that are willing to push the boundaries with a new stance. We’ve recently fell for Irish artist ROE, as her track Hey Thomas shone with individuality, taking an empowering view against bullying. We caught up with her to get an insight into her world:
Hey ROE! Pleasure to speak, and thank you for taking the time. We love the self description of your sound: “Grumpy Electro Pop”. Can you add some colour to that and give us some of the motivations to your music?
Hey! That description came about because of a blog writing about one of my first tracks and when I read it I laughed and decided I’d stick with it. I think it resonates with my music because on the outside my songs are clean and shiny but the lyrics I write are usually really sad and grumpy. The reason I got into creating the music that I do is because me and my producer Liam Craig both found a love for fuzzy guitars and dirty synths. We tried creating tracks with a band sound first of all but when we started creating these fuzzy electro pop songs it felt so right. Going down this route also meant that I could explore playing all of the instruments myself on stage! And it’s a lot of fun.
We also love the Irish tones of your voice, what are your thoughts on the positive reception of your music in the UK and internationally?
I think it’s really amazing. It’s mad when you realise that there’s people out there miles away from you listening to YOUR songs! They could be listening to any other artist right now but instead they chose to listen to some grumpy electro pop artist from Ireland and they like it! It’s just something that’s so surreal to me and I love it. I write songs that I hope ring a bell with a lot of people when I talk about subjects that aren’t usually written about and the fact that people are really leaning in to it is just a complete dream.
You wear a lot of your musical influences on your sleeves, but what influences your music that we won’t expect?
I’m massively into a lot of soul and funk music. Stevie Wonder is a big influence to me because he’s a great songwriter who comes up with all of these out of the box musician ideas. Some of the harmonies he comes up with are just insane and the fact that he plays almost every instrument really inspired me. I’m also big into hip-hop and take inspiration from people like Run The Jewels and Jurassic 5 and the rhyming patterns they use. I listen to loads of Irish artists a lot of the time too, people like James Vincent McMorrow and Bitch Falcon. And I love listening to new Irish artists because you always get inspired by something.
Can you tell us something about you that we won’t know already?
I’m a massive fan of nice kicks. I spend way too much money on buying trainers I don’t need and scrolling through shoes I can’t afford. Apart from my music it’s the one thing I’m super into! Unashamedly.
What can we look forward to from you next?
I have a lot of live shows coming up all over the place which I’m really excited for. There are gonna be a couple more new singles on the way soon and then I’m hoping to drop an album before the end of the year! So I’d stay tuned!
Check out Hey Thomas below: