By Nicholas Jason Lopez
Cambridge/Brighton, United Kingdom-based all-female queer indie pop act Junipero have put out their second release “More Me With You.”
Written during lockdown as a reflection on friendship and how much they missed their friends, they produced the song themselves in quarantine with help from Zoom/FaceTime calls.
Junipero is lead vocalist Amber Lowery, keyboardist/bassist/guitar/producer Mathilde Davidson and lead guitarist/producer Alicia Davidson.
The Music Bugle had the opportunity to talk with the trio about “More Me With You” and more.
Music Bugle – How was the band name decided?
Amber Lowery – We struggled with deciding for quite some time and actually had “Wondershake” for a bit, which I cringe to think about now, but we’re all huge fans of that episode from “Black Mirror” called “San Junipero,” so we basically just stole that ‘cos we liked the aesthetic and storyline from it and felt it suited us.
Music Bugle – What excites you the most about indie pop music?
Mathilde Davidson – Recently, we’ve seen a resurgence of the 80’s-era synths and beats into the indie pop genre, which is interesting, because it really has expanded. Indie pop nowadays can be anything. We have a running joke that Amber will ask us to add in “weird” sounds to add something extra to the song, maybe something unexpected. We tease her for it, but it does work because of how versatile indie pop can be!
Music Bugle – How would you describe the United Kingdom to someone who has never been there before?
Alicia Davidson – That’s a hard one. I’d say the UK is a country with variety. There are so many cultures in England, there isn’t a set fashion trend or music genre. It’s so varied. You’re generally allowed to be whoever you want to be – and obviously, tea!
Music Bugle – Where did the idea for the song “More Me With You” come from?
Amber Lowery – We started writing it near the beginning of lockdown and the girls sent me over an instrumental version for me to get lyrics and a melody down and the first thing that came to mind was my friends. It’s a weird time and I remember just looking through photos of them and realizing how much I appreciated them and missed being around them, so in a way, it’s kind of a love song to my best pals.
Music Bugle – How have you been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Alicia Davidson – We’ve only been a band since November 2019 and I think the main area where we’ve been affected by the pandemic is not being able to rehearse. As a new band, we knew it was crucial to rehearse as much as possible. Right before the UK went into lockdown, we were supposed to go into the studio to record as many songs as we could, but that got cancelled, which definitely set us back quite a bit, but we’re lucky enough to have equipment in our homes to record.
Music Bugle – In what ways do you feel the band has matured over time?
Mathilde Davidson – I think that we’ve matured in the way that we’re totally invested in our music and we’ve grown to know how we work best together. We started out with less of a sense of purpose, but as the ideas for songs grow, we get better at the production, the lyrics and the general “feel” of our band’s style. Weirdly, I think the pandemic lockdown has forced us to sit and think more about what stories we’re telling and how we tell them.
Music Bugle – Does social media make it easier or harder to stand out as a band these days?
Amber Lowery – I think a bit of both. It can be a great tool to get your stuff seen and also to show off your individual personalities, but there’s so much competition out there using social media for the same thing that it’s hard to stand out.
Music Bugle – What do you miss the most about performing in front of a live audience?
Amber Lowery – We haven’t even had a chance to perform live yet sadly, but I’m so excited for all the fails that are to come. The early stages are always messy, so it’ll be interesting to see what happens.
Music Bugle – Away from music, what’s something people might be surprised to find out about the band?
Alicia Davidson – Mathilde and I are sisters and we’re half-French and bilingual.
Music Bugle – Are you working on any other new music right now?
Mathilde Davidson – We’re working on a few songs, yes. Keep your eyes peeled, but really, we are constantly working on stuff. We have quite a long backlog that we regularly revisit and change as well. At the moment though, we are kind of experimenting through different genres, seeing how songs turn out. It’s a fun process.