Q+A : Five minutes with Eli & Fur

Image: Fletcher Cowan
While most artists might elect to revisit their early work in a retrospective context, London electronic music duo Eli & Fur are taking it a step further – re-recording and re-releasing their iconic debut single, You’re So High. But then, Eli & Fur aren’t most artists. The best friends have worked together for years, and since 2012 have been shaping dance music in their image. Fusing their pop instincts and skills as songwriters with the sounds of the club dancefloor, the duo have racked up numerous hits and accolades, including multiple Best New Artist awards, and a Best Producer honour at The Bass Music Awards. A decade after You’re So High, they’re ushering a new chapter in their career by relaunching their NYX Music label with the reworked song, a track that for them, feels emblematic of their journey to this point. We caught up with them ahead of You’re So High’s re-release to speak all things NYX, and what this new phase looks like for Eli & Fur.

Set the tone. How did you begin your journey into music together?
Fur: Our journey together began very organically, at the time Eli was working at Xenomania records, I was working in fashion, but quit my job to go and join her at Xenomania. I felt like I was thrown into the deep end, but something in my heart told me it was the right decision. We would spend our days engineering sessions for mostly pop acts and that’s how we learned to produce in the evenings we would stay late in the studio and work on our own stuff.


You both come from a songwriting background. How did this unique skill help you break into the electronic music scene?
Being able to learn from other engineers and watch other singers in sessions was key for our understanding and learning process. It gave us the time to really figure out what we wanted to make as a duo. It was great to really understand things from a pop standpoint, I think immersing yourself in other genres is always helpful. The way things are structured and created from the ground up, has really helped develop our style and the way we do things.

What was the initial response from the electronic music community to the way Eli & Fur marries pop with underground dance music?
It feels like we’ve never really fit into a box, which, at the beginning, was quite hard. But just going with our gut feeling never giving up has taken us on this long and beautiful journey. We love to combine melody with what also works on the dance floor and we will always continue to stick with what feels natural to us. Those songs are always the ones that connect the most.

Could you tell us a bit about Eli & Fur’s current creative direction? What’s inspiring you right now?
We find inspiration in everyday life, relationships, traveling, and what we see around us. It’s always changing, sometimes you don’t feel inspired for a while and have to take a step away from the music, but then it comes back and you find yourself back in the studio writing again.

You recently worked with Sam Luck on your single, ‘Take Me High.’ How did this track come about, and what was it like working together with Sam on this?
“Take Me High”, was sent to us as a possible collaboration with Sam Luck, it’s so lovely to find young producers like this, he really is incredibly talented and I think he has a huge career ahead of him. We connected with the music and worked together to finish it. It was a great creative experience.


Your label, NYX Music, is re-launching this year. Could you tell us a bit about the label’s ethos and culture, and what sort of space you hope NYX will be for artists? 
NYX (the Greek goddess of night) is a Label we created and have used it as an outlet to share our own music and music we live, We have recently signed the label to distribute with Virgin LA which is very exciting to us. We are consistently looking at new artists and spending long hours to find new and exciting music. We want it to be diverse, nothing needs to fit in a box, just real music from all over that touches us in some way. We are so excited to grow it over the coming months.


You’re about to re-release your debut single, ‘You’re So High,’ a decade after its debut.  As one of your most recognisable hits, what does it mean to launch this new chapter with this song specifically?
This song has been one of our most unforgettable songs, and feels timeless somehow, and nostalgic for us. We felt we owed it to the song to give it a refresh. Everything has been fully re-recorded, which was fun to do after 10 years! We have been playing this one out and loving the response.


In an industry saturated with male identifying figures and duos, Eli & Fur feels quite pioneering as an all female duo. How do you continue to challenge the status quo, and how do you hope to inspire aspiring female DJs and producers?
I think it’s very hard being a Duo, people’s lives change, and people drift apart. But for us it’s different because we are best friends and thankfully we like the same things. We love to connect with other female DJs and producers, to inspire is one of our main goals. When we began there was such a lack there. We hope to just keep inspiring and growing.


What does the next year look like for Eli & Fur?
Very busy! Continuing to grow, and continuing to make music. Right now we are working on finishing another album.

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