(Originally appeared on Under The Radar – May 17, 2019.)
Aotearoa cyber-pop artists Hybrid Rose and Fanfickk have been joining forces on the regular recently, with Hybrid Rose remixing Fanfickks’ ‘Cotton Candy‘ into a fizzy summer banger, and Fanfickk appearing on Hybrid Rose’s latest single ‘Solitude‘. With one foot in the virtual realm and the other in drab physical reality, ‘Solitude’ is both a catchy ode to and melancholic reflection upon the electronic duo’s technology-orbiting, housebound social lives. To accompany “the ultimate introvert anthem”, the pair have created a sly and fun DIY lyric video lifting the lid on their online antics, and generously shared with us a candid, possibly NSFW (depends where you work I guess?) e-chat between themselves about the tune, the state of NZ Music Month, transgender rights for high school teens, Tumblr’s porn ban and lots more you can enjoy below…
Fanfickk: I’ve had one of your songs in my head all day
Hybrid Rose: Ohh yeah? What track was that?
FF: Dream Team! I mean… uhh… Solitude!
HR: Let’s talk about Solitude
HR: Let me just say, that song was such a battle to create, and the release was a very anxious moment
FF: What was difficult about creating it?
FF: For me it was just trying to sing properly
HR: Well, you did so well, you sounded so cute and adorable and I really admire the time and effort you put into it
HR: You did like 82 takes right?
FF: 82… for the rap verse only
FF: Because I’m a pro
HR: I was gonna say this is your rap debut, but you rapped on Pity Party
FF: But I rapped terribly on Pity Party and wanted to do a good job on Solitude
FF: Like Spice Girls style
HR: I’ve actually been listening to a lot of Spice Girls lately!!! Yoo their album Spice is actually pretty iconic
HR: Got a favourite spice girl?
FF: When they first came out with Wannabe I really liked Posh! Maybe because she can’t sing and I felt that was relateable?
HR: Hahahaha I think she can hold pitch, but she doesn’t really do much with her voice
FF: Who is your fav?
HR: Uhhh probably Scary, she’s loud and crazy probably the biggest daredevil
HR: I relate to that bc I threatened my high school principal that I would shit on her desk for telling me to use the boys bathroom
FF: Omg please tell me you did
HR: I seriously did, it was like June 2016, she told me I still have a dick so I classified as a male and I turned around and shouted “bitch i will shit on your motherf*cking desk if you keep treating me like this”… I was an angry person lol
FF: I meant did, as in that you shat on her desk
HR: OMG nooooo
FF: The thrilling conclusion
HR: I wish
FF: You could still go back and do it? It’s never too late to live your dreams!
HR: Shitting on desks is my party trick
FF: My party trick is disappearing from parties, sometimes without even arriving first!
FF: Back to music though, when you said before that Solitude was a battle to create, what did you mean?
FF: Were you talking about editing my pristine vocals, or something else?
HR: I think the creative process
HR: The song was originally called Green, it was made for a friend that I’m not really friends with anymore, and they didn’t really like the track and I was kinda like woah okay wtf
HR: So what did I do? I turned the tragic into magic
HR: I called it Solitude, inspired by a rainy Friday night with a pizza and a hot chocolate
HR: I woke up the next morning and was like OMG FANFICKK WOULD BE PERFECT ON THIS
HR: And then I spent 2-3 months working on your pristine vocals
FF: I remember you’d written the bridge and then I wrote the pre chorus, “too many faces I prefer the trees”, then the chorus, then verse one
FF: I had to go back and record “maybe you” a second time because I did such a shit job on the first few takes that even your production magic couldn’t fix them
HR: That’s called being a perfectionist!! I remember so vividly listening to your demos and almost crying bc they were beautiful and you were like “omfg no they’re ugly ugh imma do it again!!!!”
FF: Then it existed in limbo without the rap verse for a while
HR: Yeah the rap verse was an interesting battle, I feel like we were looking in the wrong places for a rapper lol
HR: We did have a few other rappers in mind, and a wonderful Korean one but he just wasn’t what we wanted y’know?
FF: What are your thoughts on NZ Music Month, or just the promotion of NZ music in general?
HR: I love it, I think NZ has a huge variety of music. The fact that we celebrate it is such a magical thought ^-^ I get excited every year and I missed out last year
HR: What do you think of it?
FF: I think it’s good, but what I’d really like to see is the return of NZ music radio quotas. The B-nets do a wonderful job of supporting local music but commercial radio doesn’t take enough risks imo
HR: I agree, I think it’d be cool to only play international music that is popular or newly popular so we have more space for segments that indulge in local musicians!
FF: Is there anything else we should say about Solitude? Something unexpected?
HR: Ooooo… is there anything unexpected?
FF: My cat Dumpling has a cameo at the end of the song
HR: Truuee, let’s talk about it
FF: I can’t remember how that came about, did I pitch a Dumpling rap verse?
HR: Nooooo… I think I was like send me a recording of Dumpling, I want her on the track
HR: A Dumpling rap verse would be too complicated lol
FF: We could just get one meow and autotune it to different notes, and then use some purrs and chirps as adlibs
HR: Omg that sounds fun, we should’ve done that for the verse
HR: The sample I used was very distorted and weird but thank god I was able to doctor it, and it turned out beautifully, so thank you for the sample
FF: I’m amazed tbh because it was such a noisy clip from a video of Dumpling licking her ass and yelling about rain
HR: Our song should be R18 for having cat porn in it
FF: Subliminal butt lick
HR: Why didn’t we call the song Subliminal Butt Lick?! It’s essentially the same idea
FF: Same same butt different
HR: Next time we make an introvert anthem let’s call it Subliminal Butt Lick
FF: Can we make that one about trying to find porn on Tumblr
HR: Apparently Pornhub is buying Tumblr so there can be porn again
FF: Pornhub is actually doing lots of great things!
HR: I know, I’m happy with it teehe
FF: It’s the most self aware porn site anyway
HR: Oh 100%
HR: I love porn, and orgasms help me write music
HR: Fun fact
FF: Really? Like they chill you out and put you in the right frame of mind?
HR: Nooo… I don’t know how to explain it, it like clicks a creative connection in my brain the same way music does, it’s pretty strange
HR: But yes it also does chill me out lol
FF: That’s interesting, I kinda get it
FF: Any strong feeling works for me as far as getting those creative juices flowing, and yeah I said “creative juices” on purpose, because I’m 12
HR: Hahahahha honey I’m on hrt, my body can’t make no creative juices
FF: This is quality content, Rose
HR: It is quality content, but how does an orgasm correlate with being an introvert?
FF: You can do a lot more wanking when no one is around