December’s Artist of the Month features sad goth electronic duo Habits, made of up members Mo and Maia. Habits make the kind of music that’s equally dark as it is fearless. This month we’ve asked the duo about their influences, songwriting, the Melbourne music scene and their plans for the future.
Which artists or people would you describe as some of the biggest influences on your music?
Karin Andersson, NUN, Ssion, Sarah Sitkin, Gregg Araki, Nils Bech, Jim Carrey in ‘The Mask’, Kelela, Arca, friendships, the producers on Her Records and our beautiful son Marcus Whale.
Tell us a bit about the song writing process in the group.
One of us brings a sketch of a beat to the table and we work on it together. If it gives us a tingle in our undies then we play it on repeat and start muttering melodies under our breath until we have something. Then usually we’ll fish through our phone notes for words or ideas we’d previously written when inspiration or devastation had hit us. We usually confer with each other over the theme or vibe of the lyrics so it’s cohesive.
What are some of your fondest memories as a band throughout the course of your careers?
Getting asked to play Golden Plains, going on tour with Peaches and Black Cracker, collabbing with mates, making friends in the music community, doing BVs for The Harpoons, the times people have shared with us how much our music means to them, putting out a vinyl with It Records, getting groomed by other record labels and turning them down.
Do you believe that the Australian music scene caters to people with different ethnicities, cultures and genders? Why/why not?
On the smaller Melbourne underground scale, yes. A lot of work has been done to get it to this point where queer, trans, POC and female voices are prioritised much more than they once were. On the wider national scale, we’d have to say naaaah. Australia loves vapid white dude bands, what can you say?
What are your plans for 2018 and the future in general?
Get some new tunes out, get our nails done more, do more collabs, do another tour and get back to Aotearoa, start some public beef with bands we don’t like.
Where do you see the future of dance and electronic music going and how would you like to influence it?
At the moment we’re seeing a lot of deconstruction of dance music, ie. using textures and sounds typical of club music but structurally and rhythmically contorted to a place that it is largely un-danceable in the ways that we’re used to. We’d like to play with this idea, but give it more of a pop vibe because we have a lot of feelings and like singing them, so maybe our goal is to be the definitive non-binary deconstructed pop duo.