“I just feel a bit more free in what I’m doing”: The Sonically Charged Addiction of Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys

Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek
Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek
Berlin-based musician Lucy Kruger sat down with Atwood Magazine while in Austin, Texas for a candid conversation about artistic freedom, sonic evolution, and what’s to come for Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys!
Stream: “HOWL” – Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys




In the end I’m not sure what it’s all about, but I do know that if nothing else, we should have the chance to be in the experience that we’re in, whatever that means.

Onstage, Lucy Kruger is completely in her element.

A steady gaze meets your own as a low, tender voice follows and suddenly the room feels entirely vacant – it’s just the two of you. A second later and a now averted gaze brings you back to reality as the person across the room experiences what you did just moments ago. Experimental rock mixed noise continues to fill the room as you anxiously await one last look in your direction.

Off-stage, the South African born artist somehow manages to add to her already vast intrigue as we speak. With a wandering gaze and a softness contrasting her prior intensity, the Berlin-based musician answers as if carefully considering each word to leave her mouth. She even kindly apologizes for not being able to articulate her feelings better – though, an unnecessary apology as she comes across in a clear, sincere manner.

Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys are touring Europe as they prepare for the release of their next full-length album, A Human Home, out next month. Atwood sat down with Lucy Kruger following her unofficial SXSW set – one of our absolute favorite sets of the week, read our live review here!

Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek
Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek



A CONVERSATION WITH LUCY KRUGER

Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek

Atwood Magazine: When did music first come into your life?

Lucy Kruger: I guess it always has been in my life. My family are all quite big music lovers so music was always around. And then I also always loved performing. So I guess the two sort of went together. I really, really loved singing. I’m quite a brooding person [laughs] and so the combination of those things just went really well together. Especially when I started playing guitar and I could write my own songs, then I had a way to combine all of those: the love of performance, the love of music, and the love of… brooding. [laughs]

Did you ever have a moment where you realized, “Oh, this is what I'm going to spend my life doing,” or was it just over time?

Lucy Kruger: I think I just always wanted to, to be honest. Yeah, it’s always something I’ve wanted to do which makes me feel… in a way it’s less vulnerable to say, “Oh, I stumbled into it.” But it’s not true, I really just wanted to do this.



How would you describe your own sound? How has this changed since you first started?

Lucy Kruger: When I first started I was performing just with me and my acoustic guitar. And in a way that’s a logistical choice. I felt as if I was missing the capacity to deliver a kind of intensity that is more challenging with just the guitar. Having a band now and understanding a bit more what a band can do… nothing major has changed in the aesthetic or even in what I’m doing, I think I just understand it a bit better. I suppose atmosphere has always been important to me and maybe what I get closer to, which is harder in the duo show, is kind of balancing a tenderness and an introspection with a kind of a fierceness and a drive. And the fierceness and the drive has taken me longer to come to. I suppose I’ve just allowed myself to play a bit more, the longer I do it, and I just feel a bit more free in what I’m doing.

Do you expect your sound to evolve in the future?

Lucy Kruger:  Yeah. I’ve never been somebody who has a grand vision for sound. I think if I have any kind of grand vision, it’s more about atmosphere and whatever can offer that, I’m kind of into. I guess noise is one of the ways [to describe it] and guitar. Especially because guitar, and the way that my guitarist Liú plays, it can be such a physically responsive instrument. But I’m definitely not tied to a sound.



Do you find yourself being more of a lyrics person or a sound person?

Lucy Kruger: I think that’s why one has a band actually, because I think I’m both. But I don’t think I have a grasp on how to manage the sound part of things, well at least all the elements of it, as much as my band does. Lyrics for me are often the starting point and the thing that lets me know if there is something worth exploring the sound.

Where do you typically pull your inspiration from – your own life experiences?

Lucy Kruger: Mostly from the stickier parts of my experience. The parts that are a little bit more difficult to articulate normally. Which I guess is what can make the music feel a bit dark is… I guess the stuff that I want to write about are the questions that I have and those are often quite sticky, I suppose.

Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek
Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys © Francis Broek



Do you have any demos that didn’t make it onto a past release that you went back to and reworked and have made it onto this upcoming album?

Lucy Kruger: I have never actually done that which is funny. I’m not sure why. This album that’s coming out is essentially an album of demos. I wrote it during lockdown and my rule was to play with stuff that I hadn’t ever played with… so Logic synths and drum machines. There were all kind of sketches, and I could have then taken an album to the band and reproduced it but I decided to not do that because I think the heart of the songs lies in the question that was originated, where the song originated from.

I have a question here from a fellow SXSW artist named Miranda Joan: What is one of the best lessons you’ve learned in your artist career?

Lucy Kruger: If I think about what keeps me sane in the world and in my process – and maybe it sounds obvious, but I don’t think it is always in the current climate – is to try and be busy with play. So writing and exploring, which sounds again kind of obvious, but I think it’s quite challenging as a musician – especially as an indie musician – to keep this thing going and to make it all work. And there’s a lot of administration and a lot of things going on to keep it all afloat. And if I don’t clear up enough time to actually be busy with the creative act then… the world gets a bit existentially dreadful.

“IF YOU WANT TO GET TO KNOW ME, REALLY LISTEN TO THE MUSIC”: GETTING A LITTLE ‘OVERSTIMULATED’ WITH MIRANDA JOAN

:: INTERVIEW ::



If I don’t clear up enough time to actually be busy with the creative act then… the world gets a bit existentially dreadful.

With your writing and singing, does it feel therapeutic to put that out and into the world?

Lucy Kruger: I don’t think that putting out [the music] feels therapeutic, I think that feels pretty traumatic actually. [laughs] But the act of doing it, the process of doing it definitely, absolutely, yeah.

What do you hope people can take out of your music?

Lucy Kruger: Nothing grand, I suppose. It’s just a space to feel. What’s meaningful for me, when I watch other artists or when I listen to music, is to have a place or a mirror to let whatever is the experience that I have – which is quite private – come to the forefront and be seen in some way or be accepted or be felt. In the end I’m not sure what it’s all about, but I do know that if nothing else, we should have the chance to be in the experience that we’re in, whatever that means. Again, that’s something that sounds like it should be obvious but I don’t think it is always so obvious… just the capacity to feel I suppose.

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