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ROMY on her solo debut album cemented by the club culture that saved her



ROMY: “My first party was when I was 16. People respected each other. it was intimate and moving.”

– I had a lot of fun wathing your DJ set at Fuji Rock. I felt a very intimate atmosphere. The songs you played such as Sonique’s “It Feels So Good,” Binary Finaly’s “1998,” and Nalin & Kane’s “Beach Ball,” were all club hits from the late 1990s. The xx also covered Kings Of Tomorrow’s “Finally” and Rui Da Silva’s “Touch Me.”

The xx – Radio 1 Live Lounge Late Cover – Finally

– I was in Ibiza in 1998 when those songs were released, and I’ll never forget the excitement on the dance floor when “1998” and “Beach Ball” were played at the closing party of “Cream Ibiza” at Amnesia. I was happy and surprised to see you playing these songs at Fuji Rock.

ROMY: I wish I could have been at Amnesia in 1998! [laughs]. I love the euphoric trance of the late 1990s and around 2000. Emotional trance gives me energy, and I love watching how the audience are lifting up. I’m drawn to tracks from that era, but I’m not obsessed with that era specifically. If I hear a song I resonate with, then I would play it.

UK singer, songwriter, and DJ who has released three critically acclaimed albums as a member of the band The xx, and whose solo album “Mid Air” will be released on September 8, 2023 on Young.

You weren’t even a teenager at the time. How did you discover these great songs?

ROMY: I listened to the radio a lot growing up. I think I started to understand that songs I feel nostalgic towards must have been on TV or on the radio. There’s a feeling of nostalgia that I get, but I can’t place it. It must have been from the media when I was growing up. It feels nostalgic to me, and I do know that I was too young [laughs]. I have a memory of recording Daft Punk’s ‘Around the World’ on my cassette player, and I kept playing it again and again. I also remember listening to Everything But the Girl’s ‘Missing’ in the car and was like, “what’s this song?”

Daft Punk “Around the World

– Around the year 2000, the club scene was booming, but so was rock music. The Libertines and Razorlight came out in the UK, and The Strokes and The White Stripes from the US. Did you also listen to rock and indie music?

ROMY: I’ve always had an eclectic taste. When I first started falling in love with music and going to gigs myself, I went to rock and indie gigs, which inspired me to play the guitar. At the same time, I’ve always loved dance music. Within The xx, we’ve always been excited to play live instruments but also incorporate electronic sounds and drum machines. It’s nice with this project to explore more the other side. I decided to see what would happen if I put down the guitar and just to challenge myself to explore electronic music more.

– What was your first club experience like?

ROMY: My strongest memory is when I was about 16 and went to a London’s queer club called The Ghetto in Soho. Although I was shy and just stood at the side of the club, being in the space where I felt like I could be myself was amazing. I was listening to the music and observing other people and feeling like representation of other queer people being themselves. I found it really moving and inspiring. The music they were playing was very big, bold pop music, but everyone enjoyed it without irony. I think it’s really important because that’s how I feel about pop music.



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