This Is… Syvia


Get ready to wrap your ears around some of the finest powerful guitar sounds that’ll be invading your mind this week. Syvia are an incredibly talented band making some of the finest rock/electropop sounds of the 21st century. Having released their fantastic debut album last month, you certainly need to start making sure you’ve got space in your schedule to listen to their ace tunes every single day. I fired them over a few questions to help you get an idea of what they’re all about;

Please introduce yourselves, who are you and what do you do?

Ruth – founder, lead singer, and songwriter of Syvia.

When did you first take an interest in music? Who was your first great inspiration?

As far back as I can remember I’ve loved singing and felt very moved by it. My first great inspiration was Mahalia Jackson – my dad was a big fan and used to play her records and encourage me to try and imitate her.

How would you describe your sound? Who would you liken yourself too? (Modesty not required)

It’s a fine balance between gritty and pretty, passionate and brooding. It’s that push and pull of opposites that makes it interesting for us to play and write. I don’t know whom I would compare us to really. Honestly, we just try and make music we enjoy. I’ve heard people compare us to Metric, Blondie, The YYYs and My Bloody Valentine – all are very humbling comparisons – but we don’t sit down and try to write a song mimicking any other band.

What would be ‘living the dream’ for you?

Being able to live from writing, playing, and performing with people I admire without having to take on a million part-time jobs to support myself; answering the question, “What do you do for a living?” with “I’m a musician.”

I love the feistiness of your sound, what drives you to make such hard-hitting music?

I think it comes down to us having a ton of fun just playing together, being very close friends, and trusting each other’s musicianship to just let loose and experiment.

Have you ever found it harder to break through to people in the music industry due to you being female? 

I don’t know if “break through” is the term I would use. I think there is still a way to go before there is an level playing field in the music industry for women and men – all you have to do is go to a rehearsal space or a studio in NYC and you immediately see that being a woman puts you in the minority. The important thing is to find people who don’t care what gender you are, but respect your ideas and musicality as an equal and refuse to exert energy on and with people who do not.

Has music always been your greatest love? If not, what else really excites you?

Yes, always.

Who is making the music that brings the biggest smile to your face?

I think there are a lot of Scandinavian bands that are getting it right these days – Susanne Sundfør is one of them.

When did you first start singing on stage? How have you crafted your voice since then?

Probably around third grade – I joined the chorus at school and so that was the first time I was “on stage,” but as a kid I spent many dinner parties entertaining my parents’ guests.

Where should we be looking to find new artists?

Norway, Sweden, Iceland… There’s some great music coming from the North.

What are you hoping to achieve with your music?

I just want to make music that has the ability to move a stranger and that people want to listen to and connect with somehow.

Why do you think we care so much about music?

Music touches people on a very subconscious level – you can love a song, it can bring you to tears or joyous dancing, and you don’t need to understand the meter or the scale or the lyrics. It’s all about the feeling it conjures and the space it takes you to in that moment. It’s the cheapest and easiest form of a vacation from the world.

What can we expect to hear from you in 2015? Where can we see you live?

We just released our debut full-length album FWD, which we wrote this past year and are very excited about. The album stays true to the energy of our live show, and we are looking forward to releasing more new music soon. We just had our album release show on March 15 at Cameo Gallery in Brooklyn, and our next show is at Pianos on April 29.

Anything you’d like to add?

Thank you for having us on We Close Tonight!

Find out more about Syvia here.

Ciaran Steward

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