George Maple has an enchanting voice. Wisps of melody are released from her lips as she coos. These wisps gently twist together and then relax, eventually forming a cloud of music that gently drifts to and fro, shimmering with the deepest blues and purples. Interestingly, Maple’s voice retains every bit of its character even when the melodies it creates are punctuated by precise rhythms. She hits each mark with pinpoint accuracy, but then allows all the tension to immediately effervesce and join the shimmering melodic cloud. This is exactly the kind of voice that sits perfectly amongst lush, modern electronic music production, a prime example of which is her track ‘Uphill’. Flight Facilities, Flume, Bondax, Maribou State and Snakehips are all in her contacts list, so there’ll no doubt be more highly nutritious music coming from this girl soon.
There were few moments at SXSW last month when George Maple wasn’t causing swooning en masse. Luckily, Rachel Sibley managed to separate Maple from adoring onlookers long enough to cut her in half and count her rings (because her last name’s Maple, geddit?) A.K.A. get an interview for FBi Radio’s Flog. We picked out the best bits.
I’m sure you’ve been asked this a fair bit, but why use the pseudonym George Maple (particularly because it’s normally a dude’s name!)?
Haha – yeah, I think I set myself up for this question! I started brainstorming different names about a year ago because I felt like using a pseudonym would allow me to be more creative and less self-conscious when I was writing… I’m a bit of a space-cadet and always lost in my own imagination, so at first I really wanted to try and make George Maple a little more fictitious, like a character from a movie, a little bit more dark and mysterious… but I quickly realised that I would just end up really confusing! So when Harley (Flume) asked me how I wanted to be credited on the album, I just kind of made the decision and decided to just run with it and see what happened. I suppose I just make music under a boy’s name now!
You’re originally from the Sydney area but you’re now living in London, what would be a couple pros and cons of your home town compared to where you’re living now?
In London, whenever I mention I’m from Newport in Sydney, everyone looks at me like I’m insane and asks me why on earth I gave up the sunshine for London! I originally took a trip to London to meet my manager for the first time and write with some people..to be honest I actually thought I wouldn’t like it…because I love the beach and am used to big open spaces…but within a week, I had decided to move over. I love to just pack up and leave and I’d never lived in a big city before..It’s really different to back home…I’m living in East London so it’s very urban…very grey, moody and grungy. There are lot’s of creative people around. I’m lucky because I have a good few friends there and a really great group of people I’m working with. I do miss my friends and family back home a lot though.. So I guess both places have their ups and downs. I really think it’s about your mindset and the people who are with you rather than the place… Coffee is way better in Sydney though!
You’ve done collabs with Flight Facilities and Flume, which are both acts who have received a lot of buzz over their music. What’s it like for you now that your solo music is getting the attention?
It’s really weird, but in a good way. I was a little freaked out at the idea of going it alone. I actually don’t think I told anyone for a while… my heart was racing so quickly when I sent the first track ‘Uphill’ to a few of my music friends to see what they thought. I pinch myself all the time when I think about how lucky I was to have met the Jimmy and Hugo (Flight Facilities) because they were really the catalyst for all of this. They’re right here now too actually… they say hello.
Where does most of your inspiration for song writing come from?
I’ve always been a bit of a nomad and enjoyed moving around the place, so I’m constantly exposed to new environments, people and situations. I’m always listening and analysing things around me… I spend a lot of down time when I’m travelling, stewing over ideas. I take in a lot of different emotions, melodies, beats, places, situations and stories…When I sit down to write, all those little subconscious bits and pieces somehow become a song. I never set out to write about a particular subject – I just kind of let it flow and then if I re-trace my steps I can see where the concept came from.
What do you say the ideal context for listening to your music would be?
If you could swim (or float in the ocean) and listen to music that would be amazing.