NEXT Cover Girl
Roisin is one the cover of New York gay magazine NEXT. The magazine also features the following interview:
It’s often said that it’s never as good as the first time, but for newcomers to pop singer Róisín Murphy (pronounced roy-sheen), the first time hearing her music is often as unusual as her electronic tracks themselves.
“Someone told me the other day that the first time they heard one of my songs, it was coming out of a drag queen’s mouth,” the Irish-born singer told Next from her flat in London.
While many may have heard Murphy before—either from a drag queen or on TV shows like So You Think You Can Dance or Grey’s Anatomy or on one of her popular YouTube videos—you’ll actually get to see her sing in person for the first time on October 24, when The Saint At Large presents her first American solo concert at Mansion.
“Oh, hell yes. I’m so ready—you bitches better be ready for me,” Murphy says enthusiastically when asked if she’s ready for her big debut. “I think we’re going to smash up your place. And there will be endless tears of joy and floods of emotion.”
But it’s not like Murphy is some amateur chanteuse. She released four albums as part of the electronic duo Moloko, which she formed with her then-boyfriend, Mark Brydon. After the break up of the band and the relationship, she recorded her first solo album, Ruby Blue, with Matthew Herbert, who uses everyday objects to create music.
“He was always asking me to bring things in from my home and he built the sound out of those things like bowls and statues and brass mice and cutlery,” she remembers about making the 2004 disc.
But she took a different tack with Overpowered, her 2007 album that has been a smash in Europe but isn’t available stateside until next year.
“I wanted to make a disco record,” she says. “Overpowered is like with a million different people and writing and producing and mixing with someone else.”
Maybe that’s why the album sounds like an eclectic collection of cutting-edge electronic pop and dance tracks, but with a cohesive vision, mostly because Murphy co-wrote and produced all the songs. One minute it’s the electronic funk of “You Know Me Better” and the next it’s the classic disco of “Footprints” and the old-school house feel of “Cry Baby.” If you had to concoct a formula of the musical elements gay men are supposed to love—sassy female singer, electronic beats, over-the-top production—it would be Overpowered.
“I don’t have to become [a gay icon]—I am one!” she jokes about all the gay fans waiting for her in the States.
Part of what will attract the gay audience is Murphy’s extreme wardrobe. Known for wearing bizarre couture concoctions on stage, in videos and in person, Murphy even does interviews wearing a “fairly avant-garde cardigan.” Just check out the bizarre and fascinating music video for her song “Movie Star” (YouTube it, bitch!) where she dresses in a number of outlandishly fabulous getups and cavorts with drag queens, freaks and an oversized lobster.
Now her fans are helping to fill her wardrobe. “I get so many wonderful things,” she trills. “When I was in Romania, they gave [me] a big bag of clothes. Gold leather dresses and just beautiful black dresses and these alien holes in the back. People ask me what I’m wearing and I just look at them sarcastically and say ‘Romanian couture.’”
Murphy says that for her American debut, she changes at least one part of her outfit for each song, so the first time you see Róisín it will be a visual and aural assault—and certainly the best time of all.