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Chorusgirl - Interview

  by Anthony Strutt

published: 5 / 2 / 2016

Chorusgirl - Interview


Anthony Strutt speaks to London-based noise pop band Chorusgirl at a show at the Chameleon Arts Café in Nottingham on their first full-length UK tour about their eponymous debut album

Chorusgirl are a noise pop band, whose music has drawn comparisons with bands such as Lush, the Cure, the Breeders, Belly, Pulp, Throwing Muses and the Bangles. They are based in London, but Silvi Wersing, the band's leader and vocalist, hails from Germany. After being a bass player for a number of years in various projects, she decided to front a band and upgrade to rhythm guitar. The group's other members include Udo Westhoff (bass), Michael Boyle (drums) and Diogo Oliveira (lead guitar), and with Silvi they delivered one of 2015's albums of the year with their eponymous debut LP. They undertook their first full UK tour just before Christmas in support of the Spook School, who like them are signed to Fortuna POP! Pennyblackmusic spoke to Chorusgirl at a gig at the Chameleon Arts Cafe in Nottingham, in what was their first ever full band interview. PB: Silvi, I believe you were a bassist in several other bands before forming Chorusgirl. SW: The name Chorusgirl came before the live act. Yes, I had a long history of joining and leaving bands. PB: Was that back home in Germany? SW: I started my first band in Germany. Then I got frustrated, so I moved to London. I was in and out of various bands after I moved to the UK, always with high hopes that the band would make it, but they mostly fizzled out because of jobs. When it came to naming this project, given my history of being a bassist for other people's bands, before deciding to front my own band, I thought of the name Chorusgirl. I am not a natural front woman and that's how I saw myself. PB: How did you recruit all these guys? SW: You guys can answer this. UW: Silvi and I live together, and I used to play bass and I said that I would give it a try. MD: I have been playing in different bands since I was sixteen. I lived in London for a few years. Then I left England for a year, and all my other projects died while I was gone. When I got back, I was looking for something. I was band buddies with Chorusgirl on the internet. We met on Gumtree. I went for a coffee with Silvi, so that was the start of my time. DO. My story isn't too different from Mike. I was in bands since I was twelve years old. Then I moved to London five years ago from Portugal. I played with various other bands. PB: And they fizzled out? DO: Yes. So, I was looking for a band. I got in touch with Silvi, and that's that. PB: Where do you come from in Germany, Silvi? SW: It is the middle of nowhere. It is up north in between Dortmund and Hanover. PB: Having been a bass player, was it easy picking up a guitar? SW: I started out on guitar but always thought I wasn't good enough, so I was looking for male guitarists who were always more professional and mostly self=taught, I always thought I was too crap. I was glad to give up the guitar. I felt really liberated I could step backwards. PB: How long did it to write 'Chorusgirl'? Was it written before the guys got involved? Did you write it on a laptop and then let the guys in on it? SW: Half and half. Half of it was written before, and half of it since the band started. Some of the songs were written before the live band. We finished several songs in the studio. It'a been moving towards being a band for a while. PB: Why did you sign to Fortuna POP? SW: It has got its twentieth anniversary coming up soon. I pretty much like everything that it has released in recent times. It's friendly, super supportive. We like the other bands and it feels like family. PB: Apart from the album, there have been a few download singles but I believe Oddbox Records released a single? SW: Yes, they did a small run on 7" vinyl of two songs from the album which sold out instantly. PB: Is this your first full UK tour for the album? SW: Yes, this is the first for the album. This is the first full range of gigs we have done. We have just played one off dates before. We haven't really played outside of London before. We have another tour in February. PB: Are you disappointed that you are not headlining the current tour? SW: No, we like to do our thing, then get drunk and watch Spook School, who are brilliant. PB: It has been picked up that you a strong 4AD Throwing Muses/Belly vibe. Would you agree with that? SW: It makes sense. I love the Breeders. I really like Lush, We got compared to Throwing Muses a bit. Someone said I look like Tanya Donelly. PB: You do, come to think of it. SW: That made me check out Throwing Muses. I didn't know them before. But the Breeders and Lush, they are big influences. PB: Have you played Germany since leaving? SW: It was a blast. We played Hamburg. PB: Did you sing in English or German? (Whole band laughs) SW: That's interesting. Maybe I should translate them back into German. We are going back to Germany in April. So, we might try that. PB: Do you have any tracks written for the next one? SW: Yes, we have got one which was going on the album, but we didn't have time to put it on. We are going to gig more over the next few months, and start writing in the New Year. It's just been a whirlwind. PB: Was the album recorded quickly? SW: No,it was recorded over two and a half years, so we just needed to finish it. PB: Are there any other covers that you would like to do? You have already covered the Cure's 'A Forest'. MB: We do have another cover, a Smog song. PB: That's your single for Record Store Day then, Sean. SW: Excellent. This interview has been really good for us. PB; Thank you.

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Chorusgirl - Interview

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