on caleb : apc t shirt, nike sweatpants, massimo alba trench coat, nike sneakers.georgina : vintage dresses, topshop heels, jacket stylist's own.
photographer / Daniel McMahon
story / Erica Russell
stylist / Alison Mazur
hair + makeup / Ronnie Peter
The first thing you notice about Broods is how breathtakingly beautiful they are. Georgia, with her cherubic face and doe eyes, and Caleb, with his handsome, chiseled features, are almost envy-inducing in their blatant youthful attractiveness. So it’s no wonder then to find out that the two are actually siblings. (Great genes and musical talents must run in the family.)
The second thing you notice about Broods (unless, of course, you’ve never laid eyes on them, in which case this is certainly the first thing) is that they are undoubtedly poised for great big things. Instantly infectious and haunting, the alt-pop duo’s music hits you between the ears and refuses to leave, Georgia’s astral vocals carrying you away into a thick, swirling, synthy fog created by multi-instrumentalist Caleb.
Now signed to Capitol in the US and Polydor in the UK, the Nott siblings, known as Broods, have only been around for a little over a year, believe it or not. “At the very start of 2013,” Georgia explains, “we decided that we were just going to start this duo and really go through with it. You know, write an EP through the year and then see what comes of it.”
And then, suddenly, things sped up. “It all started happening at the end of the year. We never expected it! We’re just blown away at how well it was received and I guess, for us, we’re just trying to keep up with it and absorb what’s going on. From time to time we need to pinch ourselves because it seems so unreal. It’s everything we’ve ever dreamed of coming into reality, and it’s crazy to see that happen before your eyes.”
Georgia’s talking about, of course, the well-deserved acclaim and hype surrounding the duo’s magnificent and entrancing mid-tempo electro-pop debut single, “Bridges,” and the subsequent ‘Broods’ EP that shortly followed. “It’s been a bit crazy. We didn’t expect such a crazy response. We put up ‘Bridges’ on Soundcloud and then it went a little bit nuts. Before you know it, we’re in LA signing a record deal. It happened very fast.”
Of course, these days, a band from New Zealand shouldn’t be all too surprised to be met with fast-tracked international success. One needs only to look at pop teen queen Lorde to notice a pattern in trajectory. And for Broods, it doesn’t hurt to be working with Joel Little, the man who arguably had a hand in launching Lorde into the stratosphere.
“It’s always different,” Georgia says of working with Joel. “We would sometimes just get started in the studio from scratch, or come in the morning and say, ‘Let’s think of a hook and drum beat and write a song around it!’ Other times I’d have a whole song ready and we’d build it up from the bones of the lyrics and the melodies. He’s just a really, really good guy. He’s so easy to be around and makes for a really comfortable, creative environment.”
And regarding those pesky comparisons to the “Royals” singer, Georgia doesn’t mind the inevitable pigeonholing. “I think it’s definitely worked in our favor rather than against us. It’s not like people hear her and say, ‘Oh, somebody like Lorde? We’re gonna hate them!’ We’ve accumulated quite a few fans from it. I think it’s a push in the right direction, having that association. We think she’s amazing. We don’t see it as an insult; it’s a compliment to us!”
But it’s not like the L-word name-drop is even necessary. Broods’ EP, which was released back in January, is truly exceptional; an emotional, lingering collection of smoky electro-pop balladry that leaves the listener floating in melancholic bliss on the dance floor. As a special, personal touch, each track evokes a specific moment or mood from the duo.
“Each song is taken from a different time and different experience that we went through last year, so that’s why all the songs all have different meanings,” the singer reveals. “I don’t really follow one certain pattern or anything, but I think that’s the good thing about it. Each song has its own story.”
A core part of that story, of course, is that the Auckland-based sister and brother have one another to lean on, whether in the studio, on tour, or in record label meetings: “The good thing about working with someone you’ve known your whole life is that there’s this honesty you don’t really get with anyone else. When you say something, it’s always constructive. It’s really easy to keep moving forward. Nothing stops us because we just know each other so well. It’s so easy to keep on track. You wouldn’t be able to get that anywhere else apart from family.”
She continues fondly, “He’s always really proud of me. Every single time I get offstage, he’ll give me a huge hug and pick me up. He’s always really encouraging. He knows when I’m having a hard time and he knows what I need. I can fall back on him. I’ve got a piece of home with me, and that’s really priceless.”
And that’s the third thing you notice about Broods: They’re not so brooding, after all.
on caleb : RRL t shirt, gap denim jacket, helmut lang leather pants, illesteva sunglasses, nike sneakers georgina : margiela for h&m t shirt, adidas jacket, vintage leather moto jacket stylist own, apc jeans, miu miu sunglasses, marni sandals.