Name the Pet/Hanna Branden produces beautiful dance-pop trinkets of sound that have got me very excited. I'm not the only one. Over in Sweden, those who've been whispering about the impending hugeness of Eric Hassle have also included Name the Pet under the same breath. Hanna creates a pop that is unique, fresh and organic. As Hanna has started her journey, Dontstopthepop thought it only right to interview the girl before she buckles-up and soars into the stratosphere (listen to 'Get On The Bus' & 'Who Do You Think You Are' and you'll hear this girl will go places). If you like Little Boots, The Sound Of Arrows and Eric Hassle you might just love Name The Pet.

I love your sound. Talk me through it.

It's pop. Heavier and a bit weird but with neat, sweet melodies and lyrics about my life and broken heart. It's very important to me that all songs have a life of their own, without the production I mean. Even if I make some of the songs over already existing beats I always take out the chords on my piano and finnish them carefully there.

You’ve been tipped along with Eric Hassle as the next big Swedish thing to make it. Some even have described you as the next Robyn. How does that feel?

It feels good! I feel really blessed that people actually get and like the music I make.

I love the fact you dip in-between club, pop and disco. Its hard but not too hard. How’d ya get that distinctive mixture of sounds?

I guess it's about influences. I started of being really into indiepop and singing jazz at parties to earn money. Then I moved to London at the age of 17 and got into the whole house/electro scene there. Somehow I think it's all just stuck in me, it doesn't really matter if I try to make pure pop because a weird jazzchord or house hook is going to come out somewhere anyway!

A pop princess emerges

There’s a Pet Shop Boys feel to it? Tell me what your biggest influences?

Thank you! Pet Shop Boys are pure genius, definitely an influence. Since I always snow in on stuff my influences tend to vary a lot though. A while ago I only listened to bossanova for I don't know how long and then I just listened to Blue Monday by New Order day and night for like a month. My biggest influences over all are Billie Holiday, Nico, Morrissey... but I find some Kylie stuff extremely inspiring too, and some St Etienne songs.

I love Get On the Bus. Big anthem alert. What was that about and what was the aim behind its creation.

Thank you! I love it too :) I wrote it over an already existing techno song called "Packing Heat" and then we cut it down to match my track. It's about making way for yourself, leaving that boy that doesn't want you around anyway and doing your stuff on your own.

You’ve worked with the amazing Sound of Arrows. What was that like?

Lovely. We make stuff together all the time. They are two of my bestest friends in the whole wide world.

So how did ya get to know the guys?

When I was 16 I started the same history class as Stefan. I was late for the first class (as always) and when I enter the class room and glance around after a place to sit I see this amazingly beautiful, thin pop boy with a friendly look on his face. As I've sat down next to him he see's the pin I have stuck on my jacket and shouts "no way, you're in to Stereo Total too ?!". We've been friends ever since.

Name The Pet & The Sound Of Arrows together!

"Falling" is a strange creation. It is typical disco yet incredibly innovative. I’ve never heard pop like this. Where does this originality come from?

Falling came out of a hot summer's day at Stora Essingen in Stockholm. Me and The Sound of Arrows were sugar high on sodas and needing to dance to numb the feeling of our heart aches.

Who else would you work with?

I'd work with anyone who could hand me a beat good enough.

Returning to Get On The Bus. Your voice has so much depth. Yet theres a real dirty (and brilliantly so) and clear sound to the track. Its for the disco as well as standing at the bus stop. You’ve already got your sense of style so early on in your career. Why’d you think that it is?

Thank you! I think the dirt and dept is from the jazz. I didn't sing at all before I started singing jazz, I always thought my voice was just... weird.

There’s a real bad ass attitude to your music. It reminds me of early Titiyo and her sister Neneh Cherry. Was this intentional?

Thank you! Neneh Cherry is a legend. I never really knew my music had attitude. I think it's important that my tracks bounces in the heart and shakes your emotions around a little, maybe it needs some attitude to do that.

You really take it to the clubs. “Popclub” could best describe your sound. Especially "Sunshine". That song is adorable. I love love love that song. I want it and adopt it. Tell me, what was the inspiration for that track?

Sunshine is about getting out of your comfortable little shell. It's about taking your best friends hand, buying a ticket and just dare to go.

Okay so, Sunshine…how do you go about writing a song like that?

I was in Anthonys studio, he had smoked about a hundred cigarettes and he put this beat on and I just get a feeling of being exactly where I want to be. The winter sun was shining in and the smoke was sort of coloured by it in a really beautiful way. We finished the track in like a day.

Its fused with fun but incredibly cool. What will the album sound like?

Messy. Like the perfect mixtape.

And when can we expect it?

Hopefully in September.

Where would you like to crack first? The UK or Sweden….

The plan was to just release a few tracks in Sweden but everything's changed now since everyone likes it over there ! I don't know where I would like to crack first, I want everyone to love it, everywhere.
What Swedish Artist, for you, has been most important to you musically?

Jan Johansson. He's captured the Swedish melancholy in it's most beautiful form.

As the internet emerges as a central player in the evolution of the music industry, and its de-regulation, where do you think the artist stands in the shifting environment?

The artist will be fine, especially our generation. We know how to use the web for our own benefits.


Okay so that's the amazing Name The Pet/Hanna! Her music is completely chaotic but always constantly glorious pop. Please check her music out here.


Myfizzypop said...

the only name worse than this i have heard is that woman who named herself Pudsey Bear for charity and now can't get a passport. Though i suppose No Means Yes is also a pretty heinous name but for many other reasons. But it's about the music not the name!! Luckily :P

Now when is the second part of the GvS interview :)

Mike said...

Another great interview, Rob. DSTP has really been on fire!