Art School Girlfriend brings second EP to The Hope in Brighton

Polly Mackey performs as Art School Girlfriend at The Hope in Brighton on Monday, October 15, as she tours on the back of her second EP Into The Blue Hour.
Art School Girlfriend. Picture by Tom DreamArt School Girlfriend. Picture by Tom Dream
Art School Girlfriend. Picture by Tom Dream

“I was in a band previously, some friends back home in North Wales, and when we split it was all very amicable.

“We just wanted to do different things, so I just squirrelled myself away, just working in my bedroom studio, just me. I got involved with a label and I turned my bedroom demos into what became my first EP.

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“I was trying to think of a name for me for a while. It took two years to figure out what I wanted my sound to be. Because I was producing it myself, I was very possessive of the songs, and I just wanted to have a name that had a sense of mystery. I like the fact that in maybe ten to 15 years’ time I might do another project under a different name.

“All the artwork is done by me and my girlfriend. She went to art school, and I just like there to be a coherent aesthetic.”

And there is a point too to not going by her own name.

“I am quite a shy person. I am not that confident in every-day life. I will never sing unless I am recording or performing, but when I am on stage, I feel my most comfortable. It feels like I can express through music things that I can’t in my every-day life. That’s why I wanted to have a different name. On stage I can act in a way that I wouldn’t in my every-day life. The stage is like a special place where I can do whatever I want and then go back into my own world where we put up walls around ourselves.”

As for the music: “I don’t really tend to sit down with a guitar or at a piano and then take something to the studio to figure out the instrumentation. With me, it all starts with the instrumentation, whether it is the drum sound or the synth sound. It all comes from the sound first, which is why quite a lot of people say that my songs are quite atmospheric. It starts with the atmosphere and the song progresses from there.”

Tickets cost £8. The gig starts at 8.30pm.

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