Getting into the same headspace as QTY

Tanyel Gumushan /
Dec 12, 2017 / Music

Right now, is the age of QTY.

You heard it from the horse’s mouth. Straight from the NYC based duo themselves. Following the release of their self-titled debut album;a rip-roaring record that is as exciting and fresh as it is timeless, the Americana tinged rock n rollers refuse to lay low any longer.

“I finally found the right mixture of drugs that allows me to leave the apartment.” Dan says, an explanation as to why now was the right time to release the full length into the world. Intricately exploring the could-be simple, would-be difficult interaction between human beings, the album observes and analyses the smaller moments that we often take for granted.

“Lyrically the album all comes from real things in our lives and they’re expressions of those events with the luxury of hindsight.” Dan starts. “I tend to shut myself out from the world a lot and occupy this weird space between an intense desire to be left alone and a need to be around, at least certain, people.

“I think music can be a kind of road map for how to navigate yourself through those kinds of real life internalised interactions. But I don’t know if what I just said makes any sense.”

Listening to the album, it does. ’Sad Poetic’ especially is pessimistic and self-critical, cradled by ‘oohs’ and swirling vocals. The raw acoustics capture frustrations, as they are innocent but on the cusp of something bigger. The vocals alone, pine and plead, but when they meet they form a sugared harmony and a lighter rhythm – as though a burden has been shared. ‘Cold Nights’ is a beautiful song, that is both shy and tender, but bold and brave in expressing emotion to a loved one. In comparison, ‘Dress Undress’, is a curled cherry red lip of sultry with a thrusting rhythm and a hook that refuses to budge. Defining hit ‘Rodeo’ is a kaleidoscopic, light-hearted hit of fun. They’re effortlessly timeless numbers, made to be moved to on a wooden floor, be it a school prom or a loved one’s kitchen. “I really just think timeless song is the result of being genuine and honest. If you are true to yourself that will shine through in your music.”

For Alex, “real human interaction is extremely important. Especially in an era where so many people rely on their phones every second of the day.” Counting herself as guilty, she admits that she keeps a journal daily, but refuses to share any of her favourite stories recalled due to inappropriateness.  Yet for Dan, the lyrics are a diary in themselves. “[They] are often observations from my life and my life is often spent with Alex.” He explains, going on to share a snippet of a story where the pair had a gun pulled on them “a few times by people who far exceed wherever we’ve been in the weird head space category.”

The relationship that the two share is quite blindingly connecting. You can hear how their voices wrap around one another, and the slight rise in tempo as the other joins a track almost replicating a heart rate. Romanticism runs through the album, tinged with introspect, mini stories unravel. “I love the fact that Dan is really understanding of who I am and the fact that we connect on a very deep level.” Alex says, “We have something called HIVE MIND which happens when we are thinking the same things at the same time.”

The feeling is so wholly shared, too. “I honestly couldn’t exist musically or otherwise without Alex. That could be viewed as sad or happy, depending on how you approach it.”

Album closer, ‘Salvation’, is a side stepping number and just happens to be the pair’s joined favourite. Whiskey burned vocals search for protection from harm, in story-telling told with just the right amount of quirk; ‘I want salvation, just without any of that dogshit.’ Admitting that they were both physically and mentally in a “pretty weird place” when writing it, it appears to capture the spontaneous and immersive personalities of the duo.

They’re both curious as to what people are going to think about them on first listen, cautious that many are getting caught up in the whole New York thing. Yet, if the record were to soundtrack a movie, Dan is convinced it would be a come-of-age flick “with a pregnant teen and her gay, one time, lover.” Promising that “It’d be really tasteful and relatable and you’d leave the theatre with a greater appreciation for what it means to be a person navigating through the world.” The reviews would read; “say that although it fell into some obvious on-trend clichés the film itself was a remarkable examination of self-discovery and young love in America, and the soundtrack was truly an inspired selection of songs.”

With that in mind, why not get to know the duo themselves. Listen to the album, forge your own romance, and delve into the minds of two people intertwined.

Words by Tanyel Gumushan

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