Jockstrap have spoken with NME at the Mercury Prize red carpet and shared their love of Irish folk band Lankum, as well as teasing a new song set for release next week. Check out the full interview above.
Ahead of their performance at Hammersmith’s Eventim Apollo last night (September 7), the duo – comprised of Georgia Ellery and Taylor Skye – caught up with NME to reflect on the response to new album ‘I Love You Jennifer B’ and the upcoming song they have on the horizon.
While keeping any specific details on the track firmly under wraps, the duo did say that since they formed in 2016 they have become more “confident” in their artistic choices, and more willing to collaborate with other artists.
This, they explained, will be seen in a new song set for release next week, which features a mystery guest. “We’re joined by a star… I can’t tell you who,” Ellery teased, while Skye provided another hint at who the artist may be, saying: “New gen. It’s a new gen of artists…”
Elsewhere in the interview, the London-based duo looked back at the overwhelmingly positive response from fans during their recent run of live shows, and explained how it felt to open for Blur at their mammoth Wembley show earlier this year.
Georgia Ellery and Taylor Skye of Jockstrap attend The Mercury Prize 2023 awards show at Eventim Apollo on September 7, 2023 in London CREDIT: JMEnternational/Getty Images
“It’s been a really good response over the past year. We’ve been very lucky. Had some great festivals, people singing along. Couldn’t ask for more,” Ellery began. “They got the memo. They know what to do, which is just have a really good time. Sing. Dance. Kiss. Cry…”
Skye agreed, going on to reflect on how they found an audience of Britpop fans at the recent show with Damon Albarn and Co. “We won them over, yeah. They loved it!,” he told NME, while Ellery added that they also “got down and bowed” for them at the end of their set.
“There was only like 100 people there, but the 100 of them that were there…” Skye continued. “We were playing quite early on in the day, but it was still really good. It’s like being in a game, it’s weird [to play] in this crazy stadium!”
Speaking of playing alongside huge names, the art-pop duo also named both Dave and Weyes Blood as the two artists they’d most like to work alongside next, as well as sharing their love for fellow Mercury Prize shortlist artist, Lankum.
Daragh Lynch, Ian Lynch and Cormac MacDiarmada from Lankum attend the 2023 Mercury Prize Launch (Photo by JMEnternational/Getty Images)
“We’re new to Lankum and were really impressed by them,” Skye explained when asked about which albums they have been enjoying in recent months. “We’re dipping our toes in slowly because it’s quite unusual music, we’re taking our time [exploring it],” he added.
Ellery agreed, confirming that while she hasn’t “listened to the whole album yet,” the sections she has heard up until now have been “amazing”.
Alongside Jockstrap and Lankum, other shortlisted artists for this year’s Mercury Prize included Loyle Carner, Raye, Young Fathers, Arctic Monkeys, Fred Again.., Shygirl and Jessie Ware.
It was British jazz band Ezra Collective who who took home the coveted award, however, and spoke with NME about what it meant to be representing the jazz community at the prestigious award ceremony.