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Interview: V V Brown

6 min read

V V Brown first rose to prominence in 2009 following the release of her debut album, Traveling Without Light and the albums infectious and internationally recognized singles which included the musicians signature track, Shark In The Water. With Indie-Pop fans craving a new artist to take the genres wheel we were offered V V, a gifted musical storyteller with attitude and a set of soul-laced vocals that rang with talent and style.

Following a few successful single releases, UK festival appearances and TV slots which led to moderate success in the US, V V Brown seemed to fade into the background to focus on other projects including a clothing line, VV Vintage. Though an intended sophomore effort failed to materialize in 2012, the V V Brown camp went back to the drawing board and work is almost complete on the stars brand new studio effort, Samson & Delilah.

While VV Brown is busy dotting around the UK, performing secret gigs around the country in support of her forthcoming release, we caught up with the singer-songwriter to talk about her brand new album, what she has been up to in the past couple of years and what she has in store for 2013. Here is what she had to tell us:

Brendon Veevers: How are you V V?

VV Brown: Good thanks.

BV: Where does our interview find you today?

VVB: I’m just at home in the studio having a cup of coffee and catching up on a few emails in between breaks. I’m working with a new artist so I’m doing some songwriting today. I love songwriting. It’s something I do in between my own material.

BV: It has been a while but is it safe to say V V Brown is back?

VVB: Sure thing. I am so excited about being back. It feels like it’s been a while and things have changed a lot. I feel I have changed as a person in so many ways. I guess I feel a lot more grown up.

BV: Why have we not heard much from the V V Brown camp over the past few years?

VVB: I’ve been working on the album for 2 years and working in fashion. I took some time to reflect and learn. I spent a lot of time reading and going to exhibitions and generally trying to find out where I wanted to creatively.

BV: What teased you back into the musical spotlight – was there anything in particular that re-opened that door or did you just feel it was time to work on new material?

VVB: I missed music. I missed the feeling of playing live and writing. Music is addictive. I can’t live without it really. I’m soul tied.

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BV: You have a new album coming out later this year called Samson & Delilah. What can fans expect from new material?

VVB: Darker and slightly more left. There is more experimenting going on and its challenging because it is very different from the last record. I am playing with different sounds and chord progressions and really expressing a new part of me that I’m only discovering. I have been experimenting with film as well and the other creative mediums to support my music which is fun.

BV: What was the main inspiration behind the recording of Samson & Delilah? Are there any reoccurring themes to listen out for?

VVB: The Bible. Weakness and Strength. The story of Samson & Delilah is about a man who lost his strength and became weak by the deception of his love. My career has been a journey of so many highs and lows I feel this story is a powerful one. It really affected it me when I read it. When there is weakness there is always strength around the corner.

BV: The first single from the record is Samson. Can you tell us a little about this track and the inspiration behind it?

VVB: It’s about the moment Samson had his hair was cut and realized he had lost all his strength. So the single is the introduction though this concept. The lyric says “Samson I told you to stay far away and just make your body right”. It’s about finding yourself again.

BV: There are a few write ups circulating about your new sound and the majority of them describe it as ‘dark’. Would you say that this is a true description of your sound these days?

VVB: Yes. It is a much darker record. It’s like being in a cave. The reverb and the darkness and the coldness. Its most definitely a record that has intensity on purpose. I didn’t want to cut corners and I wanted it to feel and be heavy.

BV: You have also had quite the visual makeover it seems with your trademark flattop appearing to have been replaced in recent publicity shots. Was that a conscious decision to pair a new look with a new sound? I wanted a change.

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VVB: My fashion sense has evolved. Love Issey Miyake and more minimalism. Huge fan of Asian culture and art.

BV: You recently collaborated with All About She on the track Bullet. Can you talk us through how the collaboration came together?

VVB: They were friends and the song came from a one take in the studio. It was crazy how it just happened. It was a great catalyst to some new journey.

BV: You started up your own fashion label, VV Vintage. Tell us a little about the brand and what tempted you to venture into this project?

VVB: Sustainability and questioning the way we shop. This is all about ethical fashion and recycling materials.

BV: You played a ‘secret gig’ recently and have another coming up at Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen on 26 June and Madame JoJo’s on 16 July. How are the shows going and how has the audience reaction been to your new material so far?

VVB: They seem to be positive. It’s quite nerve racking. But after a few songs in I felt comfortable and less nervous. It was a great feeling to be back on stage. It was nice to see my love encouraging me at the back.

BV: Will you be heading out on a tour at any point so that fans can hear the new material live?

VVB: Hopefully at the end of the year. We hope to do a cinema tour where fans can watch our 15 minute movie alongside a live show.

BV: Going back a few years, you were a very prominent fixture within the UK festival season. Are there any plans to join the line-up of any of this year’s big events?

VVB: Hopefully next year. I have my fingers crossed for latitude and Secret Garden.

BV: What else is on the V V Brown calendar for 2013 that we can look forward to?

VVB: A 15 minute short film to accompany the album is coming. It took us a while to shoot and we had the opportunity to do it with some talented folks. Keep a look out as the video for Samson is part of a short film.

BV: Thanks for your time V V and good luck with your upcoming shows.

VVB: Thanks Brendon x

V V Brown’s new album Samson & Delilah will be released later in 2013.