RIOT Introducing: Maude Latour

Indie’s emerging breakout artist, Maude Latour, is about to be on all your bedroom-pop playlists.

Maude Latour is shooting for the stars with her catchy, lyrical pop tracks. Ever since releasing her Starsick EP in November 2019, Latour has been on the fast-track to becoming indie royalty. Infectious, nuanced, and powerful, the New York singer-songwriter’s music is effortless. There’s cosmic energy in her music, entwined with synth-pop rhythms and jazzy piano riffs against her buttery harmonies.

Latour has dropped her latest single ‘Furniture,’ a firey synth breakup track, filled with fizzing vocals and crackling beats. The artist also shared a self-directed fun naughties-style music video, shot with Latour’s flatmates in her Ivy-league dorm room.

RIOT caught up with the rising pop star about her new pop banger, comparisons to Lorde, and being a New Yorker.

‘Furniture’ is all about a breakup. What was the songwriting process like for that and how was it to create such a personal song?

Well, I definitely wrote this song to get through the break up. It existed for my own survival, and it was a very powerful experience being able to have this song with me at all times. It really got me through some rough times.

How did you come up with the concept for the music video? Was it filmed at your dorm at Columbia? 

Yes! It’s filmed in my dorm room with kids from my floor. We had such a wonderful day putting it together, I think it was one of my favorite days of the semester, before we knew we all had to move out for COVID. I had the most incredible time mapping it out, picturing the vignettes and scenes and colors, I wrote out every shot and it turned out better than I could’ve imagined. Fergus Campbell, a close friend and creative partner, and I have such good artistic rhythm together. I absolutely love working with him.

You’re currently at university, how are you juggling music and school?

I definitely let these two parts of my world inspire each other. I love school, I am so grateful for this education, I am constantly inspired by professors and classes and I couldn’t give it up. It is such a privilege to be at Columbia. It is a dream setting to me for my mind’s exploration. I am in love with philosophy and the romantic experience of intellectualism that Columbia induces has become a foundational part of my personhood. I have a piano in my room, I go to sessions after class, I write every day. All of my friends are involved in every video, they have come to every single show, they believe in the music and I appreciate them so much.

Is your college experience going to come up in new music?

Interesting question. It’s definitely the backdrop for these songs, but I think it’ll come up even more in future works.

Maude LatourYou’ve spent quite a bit of time in New York. How does the city influence your music? What is so alluring about New York?

This place was really where I found my freedom. Kids who are from New York City are independent so much sooner. I had created an entire universe around the city by age 15. I felt like I was in a constant dialogue with New York, like it was speaking to me. I think every New Yorker feels that.

Speaking of music, how would you describe your sound?

I think it’s a symphony of overly lyrical pop perfection with a love of the Strokes and The Beach Boys.

You get quite a few comparisons to artists like Lorde. How do you feel about comparisons? 

She definitely was an idol to me, someone who I felt was in my brain. I am in love with Lorde’s voice and the world she gifted me, she was a narrative of teenage life. I wonder if I will be that for people too. I take it as a compliment for sure, because I know how she makes people feel and that’s all I want to do with my music. I think as my music progresses it’ll become more truly “Maude”.

Who are five artists you’re listening to on repeat these days?

Soccer Mommy, Raveena, The Mamas & The Papas, Beach House, Weyes Blood, Chance the Rapper. Sorry, that’s 6.

Are they similar to the types of artists you grew up listening to?

I grew up with Abba, Prince, Gwen Stefani, Queen, Amy Winehouse. I’d say these people share strong melodies and strong artistic identity and very distinct styles. I fall in love with the worlds built by music. These people all have created worlds.

You once described yourself as a ‘baby artist.’ Do you think you’re finding your footing in the industry?

I think I’m definitely coming in with [the] intention to overturn it. I definitely don’t think I play by the rules of the industry and I think I’ve only just begun my plans. I can’t believe how comfortable I am referring to industry things and people– If myself 2 years ago could hear me now, wow! I have fun with it, I definitely enjoy the introspection and character development that comes with navigating it. I say “baby artist” because I literally have JUST started sharing a TASTE of the universe I’m building. It’s coming, it’s coming.

What can fans expect from new music in the future? Are you finding anything inspiring during lockdown?

Oh, indeed. I’m… it’s… it’s brewing. I can’t really put words to it, but, it’s happening.

Lastly, you’re studying political science and obviously passionate about the planet on your socials and even in your music. What moments of positivity or themes do you want people to take away from your songs?

Perhaps recognizing your individual existence. Addressing your introspective needs. Starting the dialogue within. I know my music speaks to that essence of a person, and I do think that self-work is the first step to finding our purpose and agency to make real change.

Find Maude Latour on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. ‘Furniture’, her latest single, is available to stream now. 

Author avatar
Caroline Edwards

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