Late last Thursday afternoon, I found myself google mapping buyers’ club and walking right past it because I was too engrossed in the music that was coming through my earphones, although the slight detour was worth it to find the well hidden gem. I was there to meet the 3 girls that make up the band I See Rivers (Eline, Gøril, and Lill), ahead of their gig later that night. Immediately as I sat down in the empty bar, I was welcomed with open arms. All three came across as calming and relaxed, and it very quickly became clear that their music is a reflection of their serene personalities.
Hailing from different parts of Norway, Lill talked about how they all met in Liverpool while studying music. We chatted about the band playing at the same Sofar Sounds as Newton Faulkner in London, and how that eventually led onto securing a place on tour with him. As a band they mentioned that it was ‘cool’ of him to take the girls under his wing, with bigger venues and larger audiences; the perfect stepping stone for any young band.
After having recently toured Norway, it seemed appropriate to ask about any differences between crowds in the UK and crowds in their homeland. Lill said “Norwegian people are really lovely… but they’re so reserved as an audience. It’s hard work playing for a Norwegian audience”. While Eline commented that “it feels like it’s easier to entertain” crowds in the UK.
“it’s important to be able to do it, but it is really hard to see yourself from the outside, trying to define your sound, when it’s something that we created from the inside.”
Their new EP is due for release in April, as well as a single to be released before then on March 17th. The EP is a collection of five songs that, to the girls, feels like it represents their time in Liverpool as a band and everything that came with living away from home.
Defining their sound Lill said “it’s important to be able to do it, but it is really hard to see yourself from the outside, trying to define your sound, when it’s something that we created from the inside, so it’s seeing it as a thing. It’s quite hard so we invented float folk”. Eline said “it’s not like proper folk music and it’s not folk pop either because it’s a bit more floaty” – hence, their term of ‘float folk’.
Yes, float folk is a new genre of music that the band have invented to describe their sound. As I was talking to them, it was dawning on me that it’s becoming harder than ever for bands and solo-artists to find something that makes them stand out from all the rest, something that makes them unique. And, in this way, I See Rivers have found a really good way of tackling this challenge, simply by creating their own genre to best describe their music.
As my interview with this delightful band came to a close, we briefly chatted about their love for Sufjan Stevens and Fleet Foxes, and more generally how they all listen to a variety of musical genres, which they all agreed, helps to bring many influences to their songwriting.
Their new single ‘DA RAM’ is out on the 17th March but you can preview it alongside the video over on their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/iseerivers/
If you would like to hear the full interview you can here: