Kitty, Daisy & Lewis

Kitty, Daisy & Lewis.jpg

By Poppy Tohill

Following 2015’s Kitty, Daisy & Lewis 'The Third', the sibling trio are back stronger than ever, harnessing their ability to create pop-infused soul, blues, rock n roll and a large mix of genres to perfection, in the shape of their fourth studio album, Superscope.

Speaking to Kitty, Daisy and Lewis just hours after the album was released, excitement levels were clearly very high as they cheerfully chimed “Hello!” in perfect unison down the phone line.

Happy album release day! How are you feeling now that Superscope is out there in the world?

Lewis: Thank you! It’s good to get it off our chest and finally have it out there..

Kitty: For us it’s old news! (laughs) But for everyone else it’s brand new so it’ll be interesting to see what people’s reactions are and we really hope they like it.

Can you tell us a little bit about the record and what we can expect from it?

Lewis: Every track has a very different musical feel to it, because there’s not just one songwriter across the whole record, there’s multiple writers and we’ve each got our own different style, so there’s something for everyone on there.

On that note, you’re all multi-instrumentalists as well.. How do you decide who plays what on each track?

Kitty: Generally whoever writes the song will sing it and then we’ll develop it together. We’ve all got different styles and when a song has got a certain feel to it we’ll know who it is best suited to, so we kind of just play around with it and see what happens.

Daisy: Also, I don’t play guitar, so if there’s something with two guitars in it I’l be the one playing drums. We each know who is capable of playing various parts so we kind of just fall into it. 

How about the songwriting process, is it very collaborative between the three of you?

Kitty: We all write separately in our own time then bring everything to the table and develop the songs together from there.

Lewis: Musically, a lot of it comes together in the studio. Some songs aren’t really worked out at all in terms of chords and arrangement, so we’ll work all of that out together.

How would you say your sound has evolved over the years and who has been a part in influencing that progression?

Kitty: I would say the main thing that has changed is that we’re obviously a lot older now than when we first started out. As you grow up you begin to have different life experiences so as a songwriters there’s more to draw from when it comes to inspiration. Musically you pick up on a lot of various influences as you listen to different kinds of music too. So I think for me personally, when it came to this record I was listening to a lot of funk and hip-hop, so a lot of the songs I’ve written are pretty funky. I also think the more you do it, the more confident you become to show other sides of yourself. I’m not afraid to rock out a little bit more now, you know!

Can you tells us about the recently released single Black Van?’

Daisy: When we toured Europe last year we had a couple of friends supporting us on tour and I kind of ended up getting with their new guitarist a few weeks into the tour.. They were driving a black van and the song is about us turning up to the venue and waiting for them to arrive and that excitement of a new relationship (laughs).

Originally I wrote it on piano and it was very slow and chord-y song with an almost Blondie type melody, which has slightly changed over time as we’ve developed the song. I enjoyed singing it with the piano but I wanted it to have a bit more of a drive and it’s a lot more fun to sing with that energy behind it!

As with your previous recordings, this album is an analogue production… What kind of influence do you think recording it that way has on the overall sound of the record and why do you choose to predominantly record in analogue?  

Lewis: I think the way we record is mostly based on what we’re playing rather than the post-production, even though of course in the analog domain you can do loads of post-production work.. But I think what we do relies more on what happens on the other side of the microphone because if you don’t capture that initial ‘feeling’ then you’re not really going to end up with much. 

There’s so different ways of working with analog too.. You can keep a very natural sound like James Brown, or go to the other end of spectrum with pop like Bruce Springsteen or Michael Jackson, which again are completely different but still within that analog domain. The possibilities are endless and I have a great passion for recording in that way because you can produce some fantastic sounds.

Is there any particular message you’re hoping fans take away from listening to this record?

Daisy: All in all it is quite a positive album and I think people will get that when they listen to it. In this day and age there’s quite a lot of shit going on in the world, so if it helps some people escape that and have a good time and a laugh, then that’s the main thing. We just want people to enjoy it!  

Lastly, if you had to describe the album in three words, what would you say?

All: (Laugh) Um…

Kitty: Spicy Lobster Pot! (laughs)

Kitty, Daisy & Lewissuperscope.jpg

Finally promising that they’ve definitely got plans to return to New Zealand early next year.. Stay tuned for that announcement coming soon and in the mean time, drive that excitement by giving Superscope a spin, I highly recommend it!