30 seconds interview: Pandr Eyez

Pandr Eyez

For Pandr Eyez, music is a game of contrasts. The London-based duo navigate the choppier waters of hip-hop and bass to bring a rougher edge to their otherwise pristine pop.

Over a handful of self-released EPs, US-born Ferren Gibson and her production partner Tom Lloyd have combined these elements to give us a outsider take on the R&B mode – and so far so good.

Balancing Ferren’s natural feel-good vibes and persuasive vocal hooks against Tom’s stubborn rhythms and aggressive bass, they’ve come up with a formula that doesn’t stray too far from the mainstream but holds its integrity.

Their latest offering, Present EP, is a riotous mix of unassailable production and conflicting melodies, from sultry refrains to sharp raps.

Opener Don’t Hurt Em kicks off with a sample that could be straight from Dean Blunt’s The Narcissist II, before descending at speed into bass-fuelled mayhem.

It’s followed by the pair’s statement of intent – a dreamy, rolling cover of Mariah Carey’s Heartbreaker.

With so much ground covered on this EP, it seems that Pandr Eyez have only just begun to find their groove and hit their experimental stride – so we’re very excited to have them play at our M magazine/PRS for Music showcase next month. Details to follow…

In the meantime, we spent 30 seconds with Ferren to find out more about their edgy pop sound and unstoppable ambition.

We first started writing music because…
The simple answer is probably because we love it! I’ve been writing music since I was about 12, and Tom has been making music since he was a teenager. I think we were both hungry to make music around the time we met at uni, so it was kismet. We didn’t become a proper band for a while after the writing started.

We have been making music since…
We started making music at the beginning 2010. We spent a year writing all sorts of styles and finding our sound. We didn’t put out our first release until 2011.

Our music is…
Bold. Eclectic. Genuine. Our music is what keeps me up at night, but also what gives us amazing opportunities that a lot of musicians would cherish.

You’ll like us if you listen to…
This is hard. All of our songs are so diverse. There’s only about 10-15 songs floating around out there. You can listen to all of them while you cook your dinner!

Our favourite venue is…
Quirky venues are always nice. It’s hard to separate the venue from the experience. Maybe Madame Jojo’s is a good one? It’s an intimate room, and the bar and the stage are all in one room, which is good.

Music is important because…
I can’t imagine a life with no music. It feels like such a natural thing. Music has such a connection with emotions and self-expression.

Our biggest inspiration is…
I think we’re constantly inspired by the new artists and sounds coming up in music. We’re constantly wanting to push ourselves to be better and more innovative. We have a lot of singers and producers we will always look up to, but if you always look to the same people, you can get stuck in the same habits.

Our dream collaboration would be…
Hmm, Kanye West? It would be amazing for someone like him to executive produce our album. He seems like the kind of guy that would really push you to dig a little deeper.

To try us out, listen to our song…
For our new EP, we put out a cover of Mariah Carey’s Heartbreaker. That’s not a bad place to start: https://soundcloud.com/pandreyez/heartbreaker

If we weren’t making music we’d be…
We’re both career-driven people. I think we’d be climbing some corporate ladder or starting a business. I’m quite into design and blog about that.

In 10 years time we want to be…
Successful and happy. Can’t ask for more than that.

Check out Ferren’s design blog at http://artcre.am/

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