“Mauvey really, really is head and shoulders above the crowd… the music is absolutely fantastic,” says BBC Radio 6 Music of the postmodern-leaning Canadian/British singer/songwriter who blends pop, rock, punk, alternative, and electronic into something as profoundly uplifting as it is danceable. Tomorrow (4/14) MAUVEY drops a brand new mixtape, courtesy of 604 Records, aptly titled, ‘Before the Album 2: A Brief Overview,’ and next week he embarks on a short run of US dates supporting July Talk, which will have him at our very own MilkBoy Friday, April 21st. I recently got a chance to chat with MAUVEY about some of our mutual favorite artists, filmmaking, racism, and a bunch of other things that he spoke about with exceptional passion. Read what he had to tell me and get your tickets (link below) to see him next Friday and MilkBoy!
Izzy Cihak: Your most recent single, “I Dare You To Break,” dropped last month. How did that particular track come about?
MAUVEY: “I Dare You To Break” was one of the last songs recorded on the upcoming mixtape. I canvased the entire project and felt the only topic in this relationship I hadn’t covered was trust and surrender. It’s dressed in pop, but the subject matter is deep.
Izzy: And your previous single, “We Had the Time Of Our Lives Together,” is a collaboration with Lights, who I’m also a big fan of. How was the experience of getting to work with her?
MAUVEY: It was a dream. Everything you’d hope working with a superstar would be like. She is generous, loving, encouraging and a real-life creative genius.
Izzy: You’ve also worked with Dear Rouge and I M U R, who I also really dig and have covered before. I’m assuming you’re all friends, but maybe just because we assume all Canadian musicians know each other [laughs]. Is that true, or did you connect with them somewhat recently?
MAUVEY: I adore I M U R and Dear Rouge. I love Jenny-Lea with all my heart. It is really amazing to call them real, good friends.
Izzy: You just played a number of US dates throughout mid-late March. How did those shows go? Any that especially stood out?
MAUVEY: They have all been phenomenal. I am so grateful to have been invited to play some of the biggest discovery festivals in the world.
I would say playing in Boise, Idaho, has been the highlight so far. I truly have enjoyed every single show in every single city.
Izzy: I realize this is a big question but, considering that your musical career is still relatively new, what have been some of the personal highlights of it for you, whether experiences it’s afforded you or reactions your music has received?
MAUVEY: Honestly, meeting my manager and working with Lights have been the highlight of my early career to date.
Izzy: Is there anything that you think is especially important for fans and potential fans to know about you, whether relating to your background, your aim as an artist, or just your process of making music?
MAUVEY: Since honesty is the best policy, new people should know that I am heart wrenchingly desperate to build the biggest brand in music and creative art. I am as keen as they come, which might put people off, but it’s the truth. I have never and will never try to “play it cool,” because everything means far too much to me. I don’t care about fame or money, all I would do with the biggest brand in music and creative art is use that enormous platform to distribute LOVE on a global scale, one person at a time.
I work all day and all night and care deeply about my art. I make music, I write novels, I direct films, I design clothes (including all the outfits I wear on stage).
I was born in Accra, Ghana and grew up in Southampton and am grateful to have lived in countries on 4 continents. I gained my world view and perspective from my experiences in different cultures.
Unfortunately, I have experienced the torture of racism in equal measure everywhere I have lived, and although I do not have a solution, my music and creative art serve as opportunities to do the only thing that I believe matters and that is to Distribute Love.
Izzy: I understand that you’re also obsessed with cinema, which is basically my favorite thing in the world. What are some of your cinematic obsessions, whether filmmakers, individual works, genres, or even just approaches and techniques?
MAUVEY: The director role in cinema is fascinating to me. In my opinion and no disrespect to any other role across any art form, but to me the highest level of creative art is a FILM DIRECTOR. They have to have command of so many departments, they have to have incredible vision, they have to inspire and galvanize a whole crew. Their technical ability has to be elite. It’s mind boggling the scale of a director’s talent.
I truly am a student of cinema, I love it all.
Izzy: Later this month you’re doing about a week of dates with July Talk. What can be expected of your live show when you’re here at MilkBoy?
MAUVEY: YOU CAN EXPECT EVERYTHING I HAVE TO GIVE AND A LITTLE MORE. ALL MY LOVE. ALL MY DESPERATION. ALL MY ABILITY. EVERYTHING.
Izzy: Are you excited to be on the road with July Talk, and touring the states with them? They seem super cool, and they’ve been through here a good handful of times.
MAUVEY: I think JULY TALK is the best live show I have ever seen. I am beyond excited to witness them night after night and learn as much as I physically can.
Izzy: Finally, what’s next for you? What are you hoping and planning for 2023, after these dates wrap?
MAUVEY: I am touring the UK and Europe in May and June. I am headlining a stage at a major UK festival that I can’t name until the official announcement is made. I have a heavy summer festival schedule in the UK, Canada, and the United States, and I will be touring in the autumn. LIVE LIVE LIVE.
*Get your tickets here.