When a music act sells out their debut concert even before releasing their full-length album, you know you’ve got yourself a band worthy of attention. Enter LANY – an indie-pop trio with dashes of alt-rock and R&B influences hailing from Los Angeles and New York, hence their acronymic name. Ahead of their maiden gig here courtesy of Secret Sounds Asia, we caught up with lead singer Paul Klein.
Hi Paul! Where are you guys currently and what’re you up to?
Not much. I’m just chilling at the beach in Malibu.
Are you singing a little bit of Miley Cyrus while you’re there?
(Laughs) No I’m not. I was listening to Frank Ocean before this!
The album comes out June 30th, which is really soon. What have you guys been doing to prepare yourself for this moment?
We haven’t really prepared ourselves. We haven’t even really had time to sit down and think about what it’s gonna feel like when the album comes out. We’ve just been working so hard. The lead up to the album… there’s just a lot of stuff to plan. We’ve been busy being home, off tour for now. We’re trying to set up pop up shops in a few cities around the world; at places where we can meet people and celebrate the album with them. You only release a debut album one time in your life. I’m not quite sure how it’s gonna feel.
What’s one distinctive difference from the music on the upcoming album, as compared to the songs from your previous EPs?
There’s nothing too different – I feel like that wouldn’t make much sense, for us to come out with our first album sounding completely different than what we’ve put out previously. I do think we’ve grown as songwriters, musicians and producers, and I think that these songs on the album are the best songs we’ve ever written. What you know of LANY – what it sounds and feels like – is exactly what the album is.
You guys were recently in Singapore. What’s one memorable takeaway you had from that trip? Any interesting experiences?
That we can’t chew gum in Singapore – that’s crazy! We never really played [a show] in Singapore, we were just there mostly for meetings. But we had a few fans at the hotel lobby and that was really cool. When we got off the plane and got into a van, we heard ‘ILYSB’ on the radio and I thought it was a joke or something! It was really cool to hear our song on the radio immediately when we landed. We’re so excited to come over; it’s a real honour to be able to go all the way to Singapore and the rest of Asia and be able to play for fans.
Is there anything you’re looking forward to trying or experiencing in particular on your return trip to Asia in August?
I personally love Asian food, or at least what I know of Asian food. I’m really excited to just kind of dive into the culture of Singapore, and we’ll be in Japan, Taiwan, Thailand… these are places that I’ve never been to. I’ve only kind of seen [them] in magazines and movies so I’m looking forward to all of it, really.
Not sure if you guys have heard, but the show sold out in a week! How does that feel for you?
It feels really cool! I can’t tell you guys how excited we are. We don’t even know what our fans look like, you know? To just see the faces of people who listen to us and love us and support us – that’ll be a real special moment.
What can fans expect from your full-length debut concert?
Normally at LANY shows, everyone sings along to every word, so that’s really fun. The songs are also way bigger live – they’re louder and more energetic.
Is there a particular song you guys are most excited to perform live on tour?
We haven’t gone to rehearsals yet, so I can’t [quite have an] answer for that. But there’s a song called ‘Super Far’ that I think is gonna be really big, so that’s gonna be fun to play live I’m sure. I think ‘Flowers on the Floor’ and ‘Purple Teeth’ will be really fun [to play] as well.
The ‘Good Girls’ video is coming out real soon as well. What’s the story behind that song and the video?
‘Good Girls’ is about dealing with disappointment and unmet expectations. In that moment [writing it], I felt pretty let down by my relationship, and how it was going. And I was really self-aware – I knew that things weren’t going to be perfect but I really thought that it would be better than [how it was going]. It’s also a plea for that person you’re in love with to change their mind and to come back home to give it one more shot, even though they wronged you.
I don’t want to give away too much about the ‘Good Girls’ video. It’s mainly… a lot of it is performance, a lot of me walking around Hollywood singing to the camera. But there’s a twist at the end that I’m really excited for people to see. It’s coming out next week.
Your album artwork features a simple design of a rose. What special meaning does the rose have to the band?
I think from almost the very beginning of LANY, flowers and plants have always been a part of the aesthetic. For me personally, I’ve always [liked] taking photos in front of flowers, and ‘Paul in front of plants’ became a thing on Instagram. I mean, if you go back to our I Loved You EP, there’s flowers in the sink [on the cover art] and the Make Out EP has bougainvillea. People also started bringing roses to our shows and threw them all over the stage. It just became obvious that flowers and LANY go together.
LANY has shared the stage with the likes of Halsey to John Mayer. Are there moments where you guys are still like “I can’t believe this is happening”? What’s the craziest thing about all this for you guys?
I guess [opening for] John Mayer would probably be “the one”. Just knowing that this little band that I’m in, that works so hard to write all the best songs we possibly could, be recognised by my childhood hero – that’s a crazy moment. Those seven nights with John Mayer were the best seven nights of my life.
LANY performs a sold out show at the *SCAPE Ground Theatre on August 10th. Their self-titled debut album is available on June 30th.