They say good things come in pairs, but in an industry already brimming with double acts it’s only the very best who standout from the crowd.
Eli & Fur are one of the most intriguing duos to come out of London in recent years, pushing a fresh sound across the land via a steady stream of on-point releases and mixes, whilst occupying some of radio’s most hallowed slots.
Having written music together since meeting at college as teens, drawing on a myriad of different genres and styles to perfect their craft, the girls have clearly worked hard to get where they are today. It’s paid off too; they’ve been remixed by Jimmy Edgar, strutted their stuff inside the Boiler Room, curated their own imprint ‘NYX’ and played at Glastonbury. Their ability to create stand-out records including ‘Nightmares’, which topped XLR8R’s download chart, ‘You’re so High’ and the forthcoming ‘Your Eyes’ is proof Eli & Fur are the genuine article, not just a pair of pretty faces.
We spoke to the girls to find out just how well they know each other, what life is like on the road plus who else inspires them and why…
When starting out in the industry, what made you want to collaborate as a duo act instead of going your own separate ways?
Eli: "When it came to DJing, Eli & Fur was the first serious project the both of us started with. I had always wanted to get into music and have loved writing songs from a young age but from the moment Fur and I started doing music together it was more exciting than anything I had done before. We are both so different and we bring our own influences and elements to the project. For this reason it’s always been a no brainer."
Have you guys developed an unwritten code of conduct when playing together or do you simply turn up and go with the flow?
Fur: "Depending on where we’re DJing, we definitely have a collection of tracks we are keen to play. That said you never really know what a party is going to be like until you’re actually there and about to play. You can try and envision a prefect set or vibe but the only real way to do it is to go with what you think’s best in the moment."
Which other duo acts, within dance music and beyond, do you admire and why?
Eli: "There are a lot of duos that I love and it's great to see so many in dance music at the moment. I think the Martinez Brothers have a great energy, I am loving Drew Hill's stuff and Disclosure are a good example of a great dance duo who have broken through the ranks. Beyond that, I was a big White Stripes fan growing up."
Fur: "Tale Of Us are amazing. They have a really definitive sound and I love their original tracks as well as the music they play out."
When it comes to writing new music, how does the process work when two of you sit down to start arranging a record?
Fur: "It really depends. We usually like to start one of two ways. We come up with a chord sequence we really like, or a drum beat first. Then we build from there. If we sit down to write a vocal melody then it’s usually just piano or guitar, we find that’s the best way to come up with a strong vocal, just because it feels more natural. It changes all the time though; we like to try new ways of writing and we love to collaborate with other people to get a fresh take on things too. It’s always good to change things up and push yourself out of your comfort zone."
What are the three best things about being a duo act?
Fur: "You don't get lonely; experiences are always best when shared. Also, as Eli said before, having two minds on something creatively is always a real advantage as we can bounce ideas off each other. Plus we have a lot of fun partying together."
Who’s normally the boss when you’re on the road touring?
Eli: "That depends on the situation; I'm quite good at the admin side of things. I'll have the itinerary and address ready but then it’s Fur who remembers my keys that I leave in the tray at airport security."
Fur: "I always need to check that Eli hasn't forgotten anything."
Could you correctly name each other’s top three go-to records for the dance floor?
Eli on Fur:
Fur: "Eli's guesses are good, we have to agree on everything we play so I’m pretty sure our guesses will always be tracks we both love!"
Fur on Eli:
Eli: "Fur’s choices for me are pretty accurate!"
What's the best club you've played at and which one do you frequent most as clubbers?
Eli: "Best club so far is tricky. In the UK it’s probably Motion in Bristol or Stealth in Nottingham. DC10 in Ibiza is probably my favourite to go to, although not frequent. When I go out with mates, other than seeing DJs I love playing at certain nights, I love hip-hop and RnB and a good basement party is always fun."
Fur: "I loved Slakthuset in Sweden, it’s an amazing club and not like anywhere else I’ve been to. When I go out, it’s more about specific nights rather than clubs. I like Basing House in East London; small, intimate venues are my favourite."
What can we expect to see from Eli & Fur during the remainder of this year and into 2016?
Fur: "DJing as much as we can, some more gigs in Ibiza and festivals over the summer. We're playing A Day In The Park in Amsterdam, Electronica in Turkey and then some great UK festivals: High Definition, Secret Garden Party and Creamfields, which we love! Beyond that we are working on lots of new material. We love to constantly write and record new tracks so there’ll be more music to come."
‘Your Eyes’ by Eli & Fur is out on NYX on 10th July, 2015.