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14th October 2022

Interview: Amy Bell

MIYA MIYA first connected when studying music together at college, and their friendship naturally evolved into a band due to a shared appreciation for artists ranging from Imagine Dragons to Fleetwood Mac. The four are all instrumentalists for live shows too, with guitarist Gio and drummer James alongside lead vocalists Gini (also bass) and Jordan (also guitar). They released their debut EP ‘COLD BLOOD’ in 2020 before coming to wider attention the following year after featuring on Syn Cole’s ‘Feels Like Love’.

Expanding their horizons in the alt-pop universe, ‘Without Me’ melds the genre’s punchy, high drama beats and gleaming synths with a throwback nod to the widescreen cinematic ballads of the ‘80s. The intuitive vocal interplay between Gini and Jordan is a big part of the MIYA MIYA sound. While the song’s lyrics are told from the perception of someone heartbroken after the end of a relationship, their duet also provides the feeling that the split equally saddens both partners. ‘Without Me’ was entirely written and produced by MIYA MIYA.

How did you all meet and when did you realise you wanted to do this journey together? 

Thanks so much for talking to us! We were all at the same university studying different things. We met on many drunken nights out, but didn’t fully connect till after we left. At uni where Pop music wasn’t quite regarded as cool as Underground, it didn’t take us long to realise we all had the same goals, and started doing sessions together, mainly with the idea of writing for other artists. We did this for a while then realised we loved the songs so much that we thought why not start a band and perform them together, fast forward a few years and we’re still going strong, and loving it more than ever.

Do you remember the first ever song you wrote and how has your music evolved since then?

The first song we wrote together specifically for the band was Underwater, which was then our first single. Listening back our music has evolved, but probably more from a production stand point. We’re still those heartbroken kids trying to share our story and hope that anyone that hears them can find a way to relate too. 

Congrats on the new single, ‘Without Me’, can you tell us a bit more about this single, and how it came about?

Thanks! We’ve always loved writing a ballad, but we haven’t felt we were ready to release one until we wrote Without Me earlier this year. We all connect to it in a different way, but it’s about that painful breakup we’ve all been through and having to deal with it in a modern age with everything being online, it’s hard to get away, but we have to find a way to figure it out.

What was the writing and recording process like? Do you take each other's life experiences and put them into a song?

It was one of those songs that seemed to come really quickly without much effort, It’s a bit cliche saying it felt like it just came from nowhere, but genuinely it did, It would be difficult to pinpoint how we wrote it as it just seemed to flow from finding the initial chords, and the lyric ‘You Look Better Off Without Me’. The production took a little more time, we started off very simple, just with a piano, but after sitting with it for a few weeks we decided to add more elements and make it slightly bigger.

When giving out parts of who should sing what, how do you divide it up?

Different parts of the song tell a different story, and when recording, sometimes it feels better coming from Gini, and sometimes from Jordan. We’re quite lucky to be able to tell our story from both a male and female perspective, so when we’re writing we often already have an idea of who’s going to sing what. 

What are your favourite lyrics from ‘Without Me’?

‘I felt too young to talk commitment’ is one that we love. Yes the song is about love, but something we’ve all been taught from a young age is you’re too young to commit to so many different things, then all of a sudden you hit 18, and you have to decide on what you’re going to do for the rest of your life. It doesn’t make any sense and it’s probably something we’ve all thought about at some point.

What is next for you guys?

We can’t wait to play more live shows, hopefully, we’ll tour soon so we can get out and see how people react to the music in person, and meet everyone who’s supported us so far. Other than that expect a lot more music!!

Download 'Without Me' here.

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