Relative newcomers to the blogosphere, GIRL FRIEND are already making strides, as evident by the sheer volume of music bloggers taking notice of their highly infectious sounds. Combining upbeat basslines, catchy-as-hell lyrics, glowing vocal harmonies, and dancy guitar work give this band all the ammunition to continue their ascent into the hearts and ears of listeners around the globe.

After listening to Manchester-based four piece’s Arrive Alone, Leave Alone EP for quite some time, we decided we needed to know more about this quickly rising band. So, grab a cup of coffee, throw your headphones on, and enjoy getting to know what will soon be one of your new favorite acts.

TMN: Hey guys! Thanks for taking some to sit down with us. Let’s start this off by talking about how you guys came to be. What’s your story?

GF: I met Jake a few years ago and immediately fell in love…artistically. We began writing together with no particular aim, only a shared love of pop music; bands such as Depeche Mode, Soft Cell and Roxy Music. We later enlisted the help of virtuoso percussionist Sam Dabrowski, and octave clambering vocalist Eleanor, to complete the line-up.

TMN: Where did the name GIRL FRIEND originate from?

GF: Prior to Sam and Eleanor joining the band full-time, we drafted in friends as session players. There was a trend among these musicians – stealing people’s girlfriends. It sort of stuck. I suppose we saw it as challenge too; to make such a commonly used word synonymous with our music. I genuinely don’t know whose idea it was to divide the words. We slave over our music, perhaps we should have slaved over our name a little longer?

TMN: Going back even further how did you get into playing music? Was it something that was encouraged by your families, or was it a personal interest of yours?

GF: We’ve all written/played music from a young age. Of course, we’ve always been encouraged by family; we’re greatly indebted to them. I grew up in a small seaside town called Blackpool, it doesn’t have much of a music scene – unless you count people doing karaoke – then it has an amazing music scene. It was that sparseness that inspired me to move to Manchester to meet other musicians, and ultimately form Girl Friend with Jake, Sam and El.

TMN: Let’s talk about the most recent release, Arrive Alone, Leave Alone. What does the creation process look like for you guys? Is it always structured with one piece first, or is it free form, changing song-by-song?

GF: Each song has its own set of circumstances. We don’t spend hours jamming, songs are written at a piano or on a guitar. Once fully formed the whole band are drafted in to arrange the song. “Monte Carlo” started life as a piano ballad; though I was always fond of the vocal melody there were several gratuitous jazz chords in the verses, it sounded a little lethargic. Several months after its conception I presented the idea to the band, we reconstructed the arrangement to be coherent with our current sound, and lo, a hit was born! We love being in the studio, that’s probably the bit we enjoy the most. We find it such an inspiring environment to be in, though that is entirely dependent on where you are and who you’re working with. We work with a young producer from Liverpool called Rich Turvey; he brings out the best in us. When you hear a finished track through some huge studio monitors and think about the process it went through to get to that point, it’s a pretty good feeling.

TMN: We definitely catch some strong nuances of Two Door Cinema Club in “Monte Carlo.” Are they a group you look up to?

GF: Really? Interesting. Personally, I feel quite ambivalent towards TDCC, they’re relatively new and I’ve only heard a few singles. I understand the comparison though, I’ve read it in several reviews now (not that I read my own reviews…); it always seems to be a positive thing.

’GIRL FRIEND – Monte Carlo’

TMN: We also catch some new wave vibes, especially in “Stop.” We’re guessing you guys have a decent affinity for The Cure, Culture Club, etc. Are we on point there?

GF: Definitely, especially The Cure. I always loved how their aesthetic was juxtaposed with their sound; it’s something we’ve emulated to a certain degree. I think they got away with ‘pushing the Pop’ on singles like Just Like Heaven and Friday I’m in Love because of their look. Unfortunately, some people consider Pop a dirty word, they need something else to justify listening to it.

’Girl Friend – Stop’

TMN: Looks like there are a few shows coming up. What can people expect from Girl Friend live?

GF: We’re headlining Club NME at KOKO in Camden on 29th May, I’ve always loved that venue and I’m sure it’s going to be a lot of fun. People should expect a contained explosion of sparkles and sweat to the sound of emotive, Electro-pop.

TMN: Alright, let’s wrap this up with a few random questions. What is the most embarrassing album you’ve ever purchased, either as a kid, or an adult?

GF: Jake confided to me that the first record he ever bought was ChumbawambaTubthumping. He’ll kill me for telling you that.

TMN: What were your first jobs?

GF: As I mentioned before, I’m from a seaside town. I worked as a ‘Deckchair Assistant’ on the beach as a young teenager. ‘Assistant’, sigh…I strongly dislike sand and the sun – it was great fun. I’m not sure the others have ever worked.

TMN: If you were forced to listen to nothing but one band’s discography for the rest of your life, who would you go with?

GF: Savage Garden. I’d explain why, but I…can’t.

TMN: If your music were an animal, what would it be?

GF: I’d like to say something cool like a Shark or a Tiger, but we’re probably the musical equivalent of a Naked Mole-rat.

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