After one listen to Mamilah, you’ll be dancing in your seat without a care in the world. The Leeds College of Music graduates have been making fresh, carefree neo-soul for nearly two years now, and are indisputably one of Leeds’ best live bands. Catching up at Hyde Park Book Club, we talked about what their music means to them and why they love doing what they do.
Meg Firth: So, how did you all get together and start doing what you’re doing?
Lydia: I needed a band for my final year project. I was just like ‘I like these people and they play well’ and we became a band.
Aisling: Then a month later we had gigs booked. We did the gigs and loved it, and now it’s now.
The Leeds music scene is insane. Does it inspire you?
A: What I love about Leeds is that so much more exists than you think it does. Leeds is growing as a city right now; it’s expanding and the music scene is expanding, but there’s still so much opportunity for DIY. Everyone wants to be creative and want to be involved, and people are really receptive and want to go to gigs and do everything.
Your music is the music I crave - what is your writing/recording process like?
A: The songs were a long evolution. Some of it was done in the studio, and then some of it was done in our friend Ross’ bedroom.
Ed: [Recording the EP] was a good opportunity to go over stuff that we’ve been playing for a while and really think about again.
L: All of it has been a learning process as well. We don’t really know what’s right and what’s wrong at the moment; we’re just putting our feelers out. So that’s part of the process at the moment.
Your EP is called Moonlight Walking. What’s the thought behind the name?
L: I think it was a device to write lyrics for me. I wanted to write something that didn’t really mean anything specifically. It was just two strangers walking in the moonlight, and that’s what the EP sounds like. It kind of sets the pace with the songs.
When you play live it looks like you’re having the best time. Do you find it therapeutic to play together?
L: Doing gigs is definitely the funnest part of it because everyone’s just so happy.
A: You look across the stage and everyone’s just in their happy place. What I love is when we come off stage, and people come up to us saying that they had such a good time just watching us have a good time.
E: We’re all in quite serious projects as well, so it’s a really nice thing to just come and play some Soul and not worry about serious stuff.