Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit
Nova Twins Lead

Nova Twins are shaking up the archaic rules of rock and redefining the uniting power of music

11 March 2020, 11:00

“The reason we had musicians like Prince and David Bowie is because people who believed in good music took risks. They didn’t tamper with something or mess with an artist’s vision. We need that back…”

Interviewing London’s Nova Twins via conference call is like waiting for a bus. You wait ages, lines won’t connect, when they do they’re quickly disconnected - then two arrive at once: “Hellllllllllo!” chime vocalist/guitarist Amy Love and bassist Georgia South in unison when band and journalist are finally aligned. “It’s a good job you’re not a four-piece,” quips the journalist. “This would have taken even longer. Have you ever considered having more than just two members?”

The two women who make up Nova Twins reply in unison – there’ll be a lot of that today - with intonation that suggests they’ve just been asked the most stupid question ever.

“We just never thought we needed anyone else,” says South. “We didn’t want anyone else…” Truth is, there’s just no room for anyone but the two of them. It’s been like that a long time. “We’ve known each other forever,” says Love. “That’s no exaggeration. I can barely remember not knowing Georgia.”

“You were late teens and I was early teens,” says the bassist. “I think you were, like, ten,” laughs Love. “It was the perfect time for us to meet,” says South. “I got an older sister. I’d always wanted a sister and then you turned up…”

After that pivotal meeting, Love “basically moved in” to South’s house. She was there all the time. Next, they formed a band and released a single, calling it exactly what two teenage girls falling in love with rock ‘n’ roll simultaneously would call their debut single — “Bad Bitches”.

It’s a Nova Twins song now, yet remains just as fizzy as it’s always been (NB: the song shouldn’t be confused with “Bassline Bitch”, the Twins first single, released in 2015).

They bonded over a shared love of N.E.R.D, Missy Elliott, Timbaland and Destiny’s Child, but individual influences soon began to pepper the broth. Love brought forth a love of Deep Purple, the New York Dolls and the Hollywood icon Bette Davis. South’s house was full of records by soul greats like Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway. She’d grown up loving dubstep. They both loved The Prodigy.

“Nova Twins sounds like it does,” says Love, “largely out of naivety. When we started out we didn’t know the rules. We didn’t know what we were doing. We just threw together things we thought sounded good. Georgia’s parents were a big influence too; they were always saying, ‘don’t conform, make the music that you want to make…’”

The result is – and this is meant as the greatest of compliments – a sound not unlike sitting on the top deck of a London night bus with all the windows open.

This is music that sizzles with the vibrancy of now. A product of a music scene in which genre is an increasingly irrelevant term. The band’s debut album Who Are The Girls? is a grungey palette of all their influences.

Sometimes they sound a bit like ‘90s superheroines Shampoo updated for the times. Often their songs resemble a malfunctioning, tastefully curated jukebox (once again, a compliment). It’s never, ever boring – and scratch everything we’ve said before; that’s the greatest compliment we could give them or anyone.

“We had people coming up to us at the beginning saying we should be more pop,” says Love. “We just didn’t listen. We’ve had so many random managers trying to style us into something we’re not and we just weren’t interested. We’ve stumbled through a lot of this, but we’ve always been true to ourselves. We’ve always done exactly what we wanted to do…”

“We worked with one producer who kept telling us to dumb down what we were doing, to play less notes in the riff,” says South, who is, quite frankly, aghast at recalling the memory.

“They didn’t think we could survive in a rock world and insisted we needed to become more pop. Thankfully, I think there’s some stigma about black artists being into that kind of music which is breaking down.”

“And they were obsessed with getting people in to write our songs,” continues Love, now raging. “Er, excuse me, we’re going to write our own fucking songs! I don’t understand it. They’re interested in working with us because they like our songs – then they want to get someone to write new songs for us? We’re not having that. Nova Twins is me and it’s Georgia.”

Just the two of us – not making castles in the sky but throbbing, uncompromising, urban rock ‘n’ roll (Love: “And thankfully we’ve got some really great people around us now!”) “The music industry needs to change,” says the guitarist, almost as a footnote to her ire.

Love puts Nova Twins success to date – and as testimonials go, Rage Against The Machine guitar hero and former touring partner Tom Morello calling your band, “the best band you’ve never heard of”, is about as good as it gets – down to her and South’s innate curiosity. “We want to know stuff,” she says.

“How things work and how we can do things better. I want to be at the meetings. I’m actually really interested in the business side of being in a band. I think more bands should be. It’s hard to get a band off the ground and keep it going. You should be interested in this stuff!”

South returns to the theme of sisterhood. “A sister is a best friend and more,” she says, “and that’s the role that Amy and me provide to each other. We’ve got each other’s backs. We’ve become family. We’ve never fallen out. Ever.”

“I don’t even have to ask Georgia what she’s feeling,” says Love. “I just know. We can tell from looking at each other. Sometimes people say to us they don’t know what we’re saying to each other because it’s like our use of language has become fused.”

The clue is of course in the name; twins, sisters, a gang, the two of them against the world. On the evidence of album number one, you wouldn’t bet against the Nova Twins conquering it either.

Who Are The Girls? is out now via 333 Wreckords Crew
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