NERVO Talks Live Set, Inspiration, Creating Music, and More
Mon, 26 Mar 2012 08:44:48
NERVO usher in the next phase of electronic music with a sexy swagger all their own.
The duo of sisters Mim and Liv infuse elegant flourishes of pop into their lively dance sound. It'll make you move the second you hear it, but you'll also be singing the hooks long after the lights go up in the club. That's the real charm of these Australian dance floor temptresses—their music is utterly unforgettable. You can hear it on the spacey pop of "Irresistible" and the banging beats of their club firestarter "This Kind of Love". NERVO is the future.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, Mim of NERVO talks inspirations, song creation, and so much more.
What's the story behind "Irresistible"?
Well, we've been working a lot behind the scenes for our whole career. When David Guetta popped with "When Love Takes Over" and Ke$ha began popping with "Tik Tok," things started changing for us, and people wanted to know if we could release something on our own. Honestly, "This Kind of Love" was the first thing we came up with and "Irresistible" was the second. We really liked using a different vocalist. We used a male vocalist. People wanted us to sing and all that jazz, but we were really excited to creatively move in any direction we desired. "Irresistible" is another love song. We were feeling it, and we're so glad it went well.
Where do songs typically begin for you?
It changes each time. Sometimes, you'll start with a lyric or a bass line. It all begins in the studio, and I always say it's like building a house. It's similar to laying bricks. Bit by bit, you keep laying bricks and eventually it turns into something. You can mold it and extra stuff like another room or color. They're just building blocks, and they're inspired by what we're feeling at that moment.
Is it important for you to incorporate different styles into the landscape of one song?
Absolutely! We always want to push the envelope, and we're constantly driving to do something different and more exciting. Sometimes, it can get to be too much and you can have too many flavors in one song, but we're trying to learn all the time and push our songwriter.
"This Kind of Love" is the party club track, and "Irresistible" is spacey pop.
Yeah! I'm so glad you say that [Laughs]. We wanted that. You never know with these things. Even when we wrote "When Love Takes Over", we wrote it for Kelly Rowland, and we delivered it to her record label and they didn't like it! They dropped her. All we knew was we felt the music and couldn't believe that. Then David Guetta called us and said, "Girls, I love what you've done and I want to use it as my first single." The whole key to writing music and creating is to really be true to what you believe in because someone's trash will be someone else's treasure. We have to do what feels right to us, and hopefully people like it. We were just lucky with a few songs [Laughs].
The music has a cinematic quality. Is it important for you to conjure visuals with the songs?
I love that you say that! Sometimes, that's the case. For our next single, I see the video in my head already. However, it's not always like that. I love that you say it feels cinematic because that means it's emotional and dramatic because that's what we strive for!
How do you build a live show?
At the moment, our live show is really comprised of a DJ set. It really depends on how long you're playing. Festival sets are very different from club sets which differ all around the world. In Ibiza, a two-hour or three-hour set will be very different from an American set. It always depends. If it's a longer, I think it's really important to have a journey with the DJ. Maybe you start with your big hits and then go down a bit deeper. Then you build again to another peak. That's what we love with club sets. For festival sets, you jam on out—one after another as fast as you can. It's a power hour with as much energy as you can muster.
Outside of music, what inspires you?
Inspiration comes from everything. It comes from heartache. It comes from love. It comes from movies. It comes from travels. I'm inspired by a lot of people. We're on tour, and there are these dancers with the support act who are also designers. They make clothes. I feel like when you're in a creative environment and you're meeting people who are inspiring, it washes off to you. When you surround yourself with positive energy, creativity comes and flourishes.
What artists shaped you?
I love Australian bands, The Bag Raiders, Miami Horror, The Gossip, and The Yeah Yeah Yeahs. I'm liking a lot of band stuff. I listen to music for a job. When I listen to music for our set, I'm constantly looking for music.
Have you heard NERVOyet?