Interview: UK EDM Hip-Hop Group LZ7 talk New Music, Teen Outreach & British Girl Bands
UK Electronic Hip-Hop outfit LZ7 has been making waves across the pond with their fun fresh blend of Rap and Euro Dance Music. Positivity is their number one mantra as musicians. But unlike countless other EDM bands, LZ7 are heavily involved with philanthropy and youth mentorship in their hometown of Manchester. With a slew hit songs to boot, LZ7 is continuing to spread their message across the world. The growing popularity of LZ7 will be hard to deny when they release their debut album in 2016. In the midst of finishing up their album and developing their tour set, we got a chance to talk with them:
What’s the story behind how you guys formed LZ7 and who came up with the name?
I love this question… It’s one of the most commonly asked as I guess the name is pretty unique! 7 is historically the number for creativity – to create something – L, Z are the initials of Lindz and Louis who started the band. Basically, in a nutshell LZ7 means a created, creative, unique individual and that all of humanity has the ability to create something, from a kind word to a song. Creativity is all about us I guess!
How did you guys develop your unique mix of hip-hop and EDM?
(Hmm) It’s a fusion of all of us in the band. We all grew up loving dance music of sorts from Drum-N-Bass right through to deep house. When we first started we kind of wanted it to represent all our hearts for what music can do for your soul and we hope that comes across in what we create.
What sets your music apart from other EDM bands or groups?
One thing we are really passionate about is our work in inner city high schools. We run anti-bullying, positive lifestyle seasons in schools across the cities of the U.K and beyond. We use the music to inspire, motivate and encourage young people to not give up on their hopes, dreams and aspirations to be all that they were created to be. That really guides where we take our musical direction and I guess plays a major influence on why we hope the music lifts young people’s heads to see the future.
Are there any DJ’s that inspire you or has been influential in your musicality?
Yeah loads! We look at the music from the likes of Martin Garrix, Calvin Harris and David Guetta. They produce some amazing stuff and if we could get anywhere near that then we would be over the moon! Those guys are like heroes!
Were there any rappers in particular that influenced you as an artist?
Growing up I listened to everything from Jay Z, Naz and Eminem as well as UK guys like Stormzy, Nick Brewer, GuvnaB, Tinie Tempah. Love these guys and want to promote the UK vibe too. I love listening to all types of music.
Years ago, having a female lead vocalist on EDM was a huge trend. Ministry of Sound along with a lot of DJs followed in that trend. Are there any female singers that you would love to be featured on one of your songs?
I’m loving Adele right now. What her music does to me… Its amazing. I really like a new girl in the UK called Shannon Saunders. Ella Henderson, and Ella Air to mention a few. We have Lily Jo in LZ7 who holds it down on that front.
You guys are involved with the youth of Manchester doing charity work. Could you tell us a little bit about that?
We currently hit around 75 high schools each year with a positive message of anti-bullying/anti-suicide. We love doing it and using the music to connect with young people that maybe dealing with these types of issues. We run our own label called ‘Light Music’ and a non-profit called ‘Light’ that all the income goes into so that we can go into schools for free. We want to use the music to inspire young people to be the best version of them. “Be the answer, not the problem” and really light up in their communities. We are currently coordinating a tour called ILLUMINATE across the UK to bring that message to as many young people as possible.
The world of EDM especially is notorious for excessive drinking and drug consumption. You guys work with teens to help mentor them from getting involved with this kind of lifestyle. How do you combat this when it’s a big part of the community that your music is involved in?
That’s a tough question, aye. I think we all face decisions on what road to take. I would say to young people we meet ‘Stand for something rather than fall for everything’… But that’s tough though, right? We would want to help young people dealing with this. We want to help them make a decision that is right for them. When push comes to shove we all have faith in something whether it’s ourselves or something else; I would lean on my personal faith and make a decision based on that. For me, the decision not to do drugs is because health, heart, and mind. All three of those influence my decisions not to walk that road personally. If that can help someone dealing with the temptation to get involved on that level then I hope the music can influence them in a positive way.
Your new single “So Good” just premiered on PopJustice, how does it feel to be getting this kind of exposure?
Incredible and thanks so much to PopJustice for the great write up. We feel very privileged!
Could you tell us how the single came about?
We sat in a [recording] studio thinking on the next album and we just started singing. Literally, singing as loud as possible, thinking on all the best experiences we’d ever had in life, why they came about, who was involved and the chorus melody came about in literally an hour! The rest came together as we focused on the same theme and picked the song together. Love it when a song naturally falls into a place and that’s what it felt like with So Good and the rest of the new album! I cannot wait for you to hear it!
What’s in stored for LZ7 in 2016?
Hope fully a stack load of new music! We release the album in 2016, hopefully jump on tour, continue with our schools program and release some new singles too… It’s a big year!
Will you guys be performing at any EDM festivals at home in Britain or abroad?
Yeah, we just secured Paradise Lost festival in Jamaica opening for Tiesto, which is a great look and I’m so looking forward to that and many more.
Now my last few questions are very important. Who is your favorite Spice Girl?
Hypothetically speaking, if you could marry one member of Girls Aloud who would it be?
Cheryl… Without question!
Thanks so much for the interview. We really appreciate you guys getting behind us! The single So Good is out for preorder right now on iTunes… Turn it up and dance!
You heard the man, go pre-order So Good on iTunes right now!
And go to their official page for the latest news and info: http://www.lz7.co.uk/