Combining their lavish passions to make music in the category of “Chillwave,” Sarah P and RΠЯ, both from Athens, Greece, formed Keep Shelly In Athens in 2010. With a nice blend of loops, samples and synth, Sarah P’s soft vocals pull together a perfect blend that’s just…chill.
We had a chance to talk w/ Sarah about the creative techniques and inspiration that helped the duo complete their new album this summer.
SeagateCreative: You’ve been working this summer on your debut album. How did you invent the idea for the album, and develop the songs?
Sarah: We are on that band phase that brainstorming is actually on. We have new songs, rearrangements, and a new spirit. We think we kind of evolved.
After doing a good deal of traveling, we collected all of our experiences and memories together to make music. We feel like we grew up, somehow and we wanted to put this feeling in our music — so we experimented. It was not about finding a new sound; mostly about to unfold…
SeagateCreative: What ritual or muse do you use to keep your creativity flowing?
Sarah: This summer was dedicated to our LP. The songwriting phase was that recent. While writing lyrics, I need many cups of coffee — that is the ritual. As for the muse, this is changing from time to time. This summer, let’s say, that muse was loss, whatever that brings and how you cure yourself after a defeat.
SeagateCreative: How do you decide if an idea is worth pursuing?
Sarah: If we like it, we will proceed to next level. This is the rule we both follow. We have to be enthusiastic about the material. This means that we will be able to communicate the feeling of each track and people will get the vibe easier.
SeagateCreative: What kind of recording equipment did you use on this album, and how did it affect your process?
Sarah: What I can only tell about this (as RΠЯ is the technology master) is that the lack of hi tech gear was a big challenge, and that under the lo-fi umbrella you feel free to be creative. You have to bring your idea to life. You will make this happen no matter what.
SeagateCreative: Is there any particular gear that’s helped shape your sound or spark your creativity?
Sarah: What we do in studio is concentrate on vocal issues. We think we have found our style by using those effects. All those delays, all those reverbs have to serve the idea of the track and its atmosphere. We sample voice, we reverse vocals, and we distort lines. When it is ready, we just know.
SeagateCreative: What were some of the struggles in completing the album?
Sarah: This record was made with less than what we needed. Time was short and funds weren’t abundant. This is where creativity part I was talking about comes in. We cannot hide that it was a stressful period. But we feel happy we got through this. We feel stronger and more…bonded.
SeagateCreative: What’s one piece of advice you’d give an aspiring artist to help them be creative or develop their ideas into art?
Sarah: Always make the music they love and they want to listen to. If we all do so, we will be able to feel proud of our attempts in art. Also, open up and feel free to try new things.
SeagateCreative: What’s next from you that we can look forward to?
Sarah: New music will come out soon. We have been off lately, but that was only to make more music. We will come back new and refreshed.