After losing a few band members, Monica Björklund became the sole driving force behind Norfolk, Virginia’s electro-pop group, Electric Low.
While currently working on releasing her final six-song EP soon with former band member, Jon Anderson, Björklund expects to continue on making music solo.
Below is a bit about Electric Low and Björklund’s unique style of music. She’s also been kind enough to offer a raw, unmixed version of her new song, “New Skin”, available for streaming. To hear some of the band’s past work, visit Electric Low’s Bandcamp page here.
FIRST OFF, LETS INTRODUCE YOU. YOUR MUSICAL ALIAS IS ELECTRIC LOW. ARE YOU AWARE THIS WOULD BE THE PERFECT NAME FOR A DUBSTEP GROUP?
HA. This fact has somehow escaped me, although now that I’ve been enlightened I suppose I’ll have to drop everything and learn the art of overwhelming bass lines and seizure-inducing melodies.
COULDN’T HURT, I SUPPOSE. HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN MAKING MUSIC NOW, & WHAT DRIVES YOU TO KEEP ON KEEPIN’ ON?
Well…you could say that I’ve been making music for over 20 years. When I was 3, my parents stuck me in violin lessons…my one and only recital consisted of me playing the “pop” in “Pop Goes the Weasel.” I may not have been a prodigy, but I was pretty fucking cute. Realistically, I started playing guitar when I was 11 and expanded from there into whatever I could get my hands on. My first band started when I was 19 or 20 and living in Orlando. Which, by the way, is somewhere that no one over the age of 5 should ever live. Sorry, Mickey–suck it.
Inspirations…it’s hard to use that word without sounding corny, isn’t it? There’s certain bands/songs that when I listen to them it’s just like…GOD, I HAVE TO make music. Stars, School of Seven Bells, and M83 always make me feel that way.
NICE. YOU RECENTLY POSTED ON FACEBOOK THAT YOU WERE “GETTING THE HANG OF” PRO TOOLS. WHEN DID YOU START PRODUCING YOUR OWN MUSIC?
Uhm…like, a week ago. I spent the last year or so in the studio with my former bandmate Jon Anderson, who’s been engineering and producing in ProTools for several years. Eventually he started letting me hit the “record” button (SERIOUS SKILLZ REQUIRED) when he needed to track a part, which gradually led to me doing more and more until I had some semblance of a clue about was going on in the studio. I did some editing and a teeeeeeny bit of mixing in the last couple songs we did together. Luckily, I picked up enough to be able to pick myself off the ground and begin writing on my own once Jon had to quit the band to become a kick-ass dad to his kick-ass new daughter, Olivia. So I sold everything I could find to sell so I could buy what I needed to make a little recording studio for myself. I’ve recently stopped ripping my hair out and throwing things, so I think ProTools and I are starting to get along.
THAT’S AMAZING. HAHA. SO, YOU HAVE THREE SONG DEMO AVAILABLE ON YOUR BANDCAMP PAGE RIGHT NOW. WHAT CAN LISTENERS EXPECT FROM YOU IN THE FUTURE?
Now that I’m on my own, I’ve really started exploring new things. Polka. Tubas. Bob Dylan covers.
I’m going to carry on with a similar vibe…heavily electronic, with some real shit. I’m releasing 6 songs that Jon and I did together as an EP sometime super soon, and after that it’s going to be all me. Slightly terrified, mostly excited.
WHAT SPECIFIC GENRE OF MUSIC WOULD YOU CONSIDER YOURSELF, ANYWAY?
Electronic with some real shit. I always hate telling people that my band is “electronic” because I feel like people assume it’s some kind of soulless techno or something (not that I have anything against techno, I’m sure it can be lovely). It’s electronic, but it’s melodic. It sounds like real humans are making it. Someone once referred to us as “dream pop,” and I like the sound of that.
I ENJOY “DREAM POP” TOO. IT SOUNDS..DREAMY. ANYWAY, YOU SEEM TO ENJOY REFERRING TO AS PEOPLE AS “KITTENS” ON FACEBOOK A LOT LATELY. WHAT’S THAT ABOUT?
I spewed a sip of almond milk through my nose when I read this. Literally. It’s not the first time it’s come up, but I’ve never actually had to explain myself! I don’t really know…I love kittens, and I really deeply appreciate anybody who gives a rat’s ass enough to find my Facebook page, check out the jams and hit “like,” so I guess it’s my own weird term of endearment. I mean, what am I supposed to call everybody? Good day, Fans, this is Electric Low speaking. Greetings, Faithful Supporters. Friends, Romans, Countrymen…
A hipster is a young mustached man or high-waisted pants-wearing lady whose head is so far up his or her own rear end that he or she thinks his or her shit doesn’t stink. Which is not to say that all mustached young men or high-waisted pants-wearing young ladies are hipsters, most of them are lovely humans with whom you can have a reasonable conversation. Being an avid thrift shopper, PBR drinker, and listener of good music, I’ve been accused of hipsterness more than once. Let me clear this up right now. I LOVE KATY PERRY. I SOMETIMES WEAR JEANS THAT ARE NOT SKINNY. I OWN A POLO. I OCCASIONALLY LISTEN TO A RADIO STATION OTHER THAN NPR.