Years & Years Come Overseas for First SXSW

Electro-pop European band, Years & Years, comprising (from L-R) Olly Alexander, Emre Turkmen and Mikey Goldsworthy, traveled to the U.S. for their first SXSW and offer insight into the experience.

The band announced their debut full-length album, Communion, coming out June 22.


Music Connection: Have you heard any horror stories about SXSW?
Emre Turkmen: We’ve only been here for less than 24 hours, but I’ve only heard great things. The only thing I’ve heard is that there are too many bands to see and that it’s impossible to see everyone that you wanted to see. Other than that, only great things.
Olly Alexander: Not gonna get a lot of sleep.
Turkmen: Great food.
Mikey Goldsworthy: Barbeque.
Alexander: The weather’s nice.

MC:  How did you prepare for SXSW?
Alexander: I went for a run this morning, which, in hindsight, might have been a bad idea because I’m extremely tired now.
Turkmen: I drank a lot of coffee.
Goldsworthy: Took some multivitamins.

MC: What can fans expect from your live shows?
Alexander: We’re playing eight shows this SXSW…
Turkmen: In four days.
Alexander: If they’ve never seen us play before, it’ll be a whole new experience. They’ll expect Years & Years songs. It’s going to be pretty up-tempo mainly.
Goldworthy: We’ve got a drummer.
Turkmen: On recording, our beats are all electronic, but when we play live it’s live-tronic. It’s gonna be a intense for us ‘cause we’re having to run from show to show. So we might look a little flustered, but it’ll be good--don’t worry.

MC: While you’re running around, who do you want to see at SXSW?
Alexander: If we had the time, we’d all want to see TÂCHES. Shamir is playing…
Goldworthy: And Fall Out Boy.

MC: Tell us about the production of your EP.
Alexander: We’ve been working for the past 12 months in drips and drabs on our album, so the EP is taken from our album.
Turkmen: It’s kind of different between Europe and the U.S. so it’s like a Years & Years starter pack.
Alexander: We tied it up into one tasty presentation.
Goldworthy: [The date it comes out] is June 22 and it’s called Communion.

MC: What song would you use to introduce yourself to new fans?
Turkmen: I would go with “Real” or “Take Shelter.”
Alexander: “Real.”
Goldsoworthy: I think “Real” because it was our first one.
Turkmen: Yeah, when we found our sound and stumbled across it, and we were really happy—pleased with ourselves a little bit, smug. [laughs]

For more information, visit yearsandyearsofficial.com.