“When we first started talking about wanting to start a band, it was only because we wanted to play these small venues in London,” Davies says. “Our first gig was at the George Cabin in East London. We were extremely nervous—there were probably only about 15 people there, and all of them were close friends of the other bands playing that night.”
It’s a point of pride for Davies and her fellow bandmates that their friends in attendance at the Last Dinner Party’s inaugural gig expressed a sense of pleasant surprise by the band’s musical prowess. “From the beginning, there was no question that we wanted to form a band and prioritize live performance,” says Morris. “We had been watching other bands before lockdown where the only time [you could] see them was live and in person—and that creates such a sense of community and being present that you can’t get online. I think it’s kind of an old-fashioned way to do it.”
With their formidable talent and polished technique, the group has sparked baseless online rumors that they’re an industry plant, masquerading as indie newcomers. The truth is that the five friends met at university, where they used their various academic backgrounds (both Davies and Morris studied English literature, while Mayland studied art history) to create mood boards for their fledging outfit, and had long conversations in the smoking section of East London pubs.
“The visual world we create is so important to our music because the music will evolve constantly over time,” Morris says. “The visual world was one of the first things we dreamed up, even before rehearsal. We all sat down to decide what we wanted to be called, what imagery it evokes, and what world we want to build aesthetically.” While they’ve taken sonic inspiration from the likes of David Bowie, Grace Jones, Weyes Blood, and Paramore’s Hayley Williams, they’ve looked to Chloë Sevigny, Vivienne Westwood, Catholic iconography, and their favorite films (we all share a fondness for Anna Biller’s The Love Witch) for style cues.
“The important thing between the five of us is that we want to create music that continually challenges and interests us. We don’t want to get pigeonholed into one genre or one look,” Morris continues. “With [our upcoming record], we want to establish from the beginning to expect a lot of variation and change rather than, you know, being in corsets forever.”
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