Interview: Heartstreets

Montreal-duo Heartstreets has been making (sound) waves this summer following the release of their EP, You & I, out April 2016. Their most recent project, the music video to accompany their catchy “Cruising With You” just dropped and it’s got the full attention of our ears and our hearts. With already over 700k plays on Spotify, the track embodies the girls’ unique and evolving sound. If you weren’t already thinking it, let me be the first to tell you: these girls are the epitome of cool.

Emma Beko and Gabrielle Godon, are the badass, talented girls and voices behind the Montreal-based hip-hop/rap/r&b/pop/electro+ duo. We caught up with them to discuss “Cruising With You,” musical inspiration and what’s to come next for Heartstreets.

April: Thanks for taking the time to speak with CONFRONT Magazine! We love the sound off your recently released EP, You & I, and your most recent video “Cruising With You.” Can you talk to us a bit about the inspiration behind the track?

Emma: Hey, thank you! The song was inspired by the feeling of passion some might get when you meet someone new that you’re really down with… You feel intense feelings, although you don’t necessarily know the person that well. But you roll with it, and you express it to them. They make you feel newborn, alive again! There was a specific guy that I fell for very quickly who already had a plane ticket to go away for a year and the verses are about him. I thought it was crazy love and that I would wait for him until he got back… like I said, it’s all about passion!

Gab: I was inspired by my boyfriend who I the time was just a crush. It’s about the butterflies you feel and how you don’t know what’s in the future but you’re willing to let go and be ALL IN!

April: How does the storyline in “Cruising With You” compliment and amplify the lyrics of the track?

Emma: It’s such a different type of “love story” represented in the video that it really enhances the fact that the song can be relatable to different people – it’s a broad subject. It adds another facet to the song’s personality that gives it more depth.

Gab: I really think it brings out the passion behind the lyrics of the song. There are so many contrasts and texture, it gives the song the “un-perfect” package.

April: You’ve worked with one of the same directors, Charlotte Ratel on both “Cruising With You” and “Crawling South,” which is evident from the aesthetic present in the music videos. What about her work attracted you to working with her? Can we expect more videos with her on future projects?

Emma: We’re not sure what the future holds but we loved working with Charlotte and would definitely be open to doing it again! We liked her clean style and her way of approaching clichés. The aesthetic her and Zac achieved for “Cruising With You” just brings the song to another level.

Gab: Zac has been helping us for little while now and it was great to see them both reunited for that specific project. Charlotte is a close friend since high school and we all wanted to create together. It was a natural collaboration!

April: You recently performed at Jazz Fest in Montreal, which was among, if not the biggest, audiences you’ve played for. The performance was truly incredible! How was the experience for everyone on stage?

Heartsteets: Performing our songs with a live band is always so much fun! The energy and give it brings is what live music is all about really… there’s always room for improvisation more so with a band than with a recorded backing track. You can really just feel it in the moment! And even the occasional mistake slides in nicely when accompanied by a band haha!

April: The performance follows the release of the aforementioned EP, You & I. What has the response been like on the EP?

Heartstreets: Very positive all around. It’s a very somber EP that portrays the darker sides of being in love and all that can go wrong in relationships. It’s very personal for both of us. We’re very happy girls generally, we always goof around and have a smile on our faces, but we’ve had our share of experiences. I think the fans we already had enjoyed it a lot because it’s the Heartstreets sound and it’s new stories. And the new fans we’ve gained through it got to know us because of it – because it is so personal. Also, people can generally relate to what we’re saying on it and every song has a different emotion behind it which makes it interesting to listen to as a whole.

April: Yeah, I can definitely relate myself! The EP really speaks about a variety of issues. Where did the inspiration come from on these?

Heartstreets: We always try to take our personal experiences and use them when we write. So we definitely get inspired by our own stories and lives. This is how we can address issues. People relate to our lyrics and feel connected to the messages in our songs. But most all, we let our emotions guide us when writing a song. We like to keep it real.

April: What is your favorite track to perform from the EP?

Gab: I really like to perform all of them. I think I have a thing for “Cruising with you” because it’s the most upbeat one of the EP and it has that summer vibe which is perfect right now. I also love to perform “Lazarus” and “How I Got Over”. They are more intense and real. I can’t choose one! Haha

Emma: I think it’s “How I Got Over.” When we perform it live, we change it up a bit. It’s a very powerful song and it really gives us a chance to sort of vent and let go of any frustration or anger we might have inside of us. People definitely get on that “fuck it” tip with us, they can feel it.

April: What direction are you looking to go with your music? Are there any specific audiences you’d really like to connect with?

Emma: Heartstreets has always been very diverse in terms of our musical style. We’re all about going with the moment, jump into an adventure, go all in in a song. If we are inspired and if we feel the vibe, that means we’re hitting in that direction. But no specific one. Of course, it always has that R&B, hip-hop, 90s influence, but we like to try new things and work with different artist and producers. We love all audiences haha! ALL OF THEM <3

April: If you could perform with any artist, dead or alive, who would you share the stage with?

Gab: I would love to share the stage one day with Mary J Blige. I really dig her – it really got me through when I was younger.

Emma: Biggie.

April: What can we expect next from Heartstreets?

Gab: For now, I think we really want to make sure everybody gets a hold of our EP so we’ll be doing a couple shows this summer and in the fall for sure! You can check it out on our website.

Featured image source.

This interview was originally conducted for and published on Confront Magazine, which closed it’s digital doors on January 1st 2017.

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