With Little Mix having set the precedent for powerful women in music before heading off on hiatus, we're ready to see a new generation of girl power dominate the charts. And we might've just found the lasses to do it.
Enter: SVN. A brand-new seven-piece girl group, SVN are formed of the original cast of award-winning stage production SIX The Musical. Each boasting hugely-successful careers in theatre, members Aimie Atkinson, Alexia Mcintosh, Grace Mouat, Jarneia Richard-Noel, Maiya Quansah-Breed, Millie O’Connell and Natalie May Paris have now joined forces to take the pop world by storm.
Today, we catch up with the girls ahead of their first-ever headline show in London to talk their infectious new self-penned track Free, dreams of a Max Martin collab and their support of the LGBTQIA+ community.
SVN, hello! We're huge fans of SIX The Musical and love the concept of this group. Whose idea was it to form a girl band?
Maiya: It's was Alexia!
Aimie: Years ago, when we opened the musical in Edinburgh, Alexia said 'we need to be a girl band, we need to do this for real.' We were like 'yeah, whatever Lexie!'
Maiya: She said it constantly, she'd keep pushing for it. Then, in lockdown, Aimee messaged us and we were all free for the first time ever. Aimee got us in a group chat together and asked how we'd feel about doing a show. We managed to put it together with a live, socially distanced audience and live streamed it.
Aimie: It was mad, it was the first time we'd done something together outside of SIX. It was so cool, and so overwhelming to know people wanted to see us as us, not just characters. We had the best time!
What do you stand for as a group?
Aimie: We're not writing songs about chasing after love, our songs are about loving yourself. The message is to love yourself; just be yourself.
That's such an important message to put across. With Little Mix on hiatus, we need a group to champion that ethos...
Maiya: They paved the way. I love Little Mix and the legacy they've left. I'm already excited for the return.
Your latest track Free is the epitome of self-love, too...
Aimie: We wanted to write a song that said 'be whoever you want.' That's a message that's deep within us as a group. When we first got together, we didn't even know if we could write songs, but the process just worked.
Natalie: We've always said that we wanted to write empowering, uplifting songs that reached out to so many different communities. That's so important to us. The writing came organically and we really hope we can inspire everyone.
Grace: With Free, it's not just girl power. We absolutely love all of our followers from the LGBTQIA+ community, too. All of our non-binary and trans fans. We wanted to keep them in everything that we do. We're inspired by anybody living as their authentic self; there's nothing more beautiful than that. Being you is the best thing. Being you is enough.
Who are your absolute dream artists to collab with?
Grace: I was recently in the musical & Juliet, which is written by and based on the music of [Swedish pop producer] Max Martin. He's an absolute icon, and also the loveliest human in the world. Max, if you're reading this, we want to do a song with you! If we got to collaborate with him, that'd be so cool.
You're playing your first-ever headline show in London on August 7, which must be a huge bucket list moment. What other goals do you want to achieve as SVN?
Aimie: We're so excited to keep hitting the studio and keep writing, that's the most important thing for us. Then, next year, we want to be playing all the festivals.
Natalie: We just want to keep creating. We recently spent a whole week together in the studio, writing and creating, and it was amazing. It's so special. Because we did the SIX shows together, we know and respect each other so well. We know everyone's fortes and what each of us bring to the group. It's like a puzzle, we just fit together!
You can catch SVN performing at their debut headline show at London's O2 Academy Islington on Sunday 7 August. Tickets are available here.
SVN's latest single FREE is out now.