Velvet Starlings
Photo: Leslie Medina

L.A.-based band Velvet Starlings have a knack for creating psychedelic-tinged alt-rock with a “beach fuzzed” vibe. Their latest single, “HG Wells” is the perfect summer track, with a catchy chorus and a nod to retro Britpop – fitting, as they’ve just embarked on their UK tour. We caught up with Velvet Starlings to chat about the new song, musical influences, and their songwriting process.

From The Strait: Tell us about the new single, “HG Wells”.

Velvet Starlings: HG Wells is a Sci-Fi-delic garage rock tune about going back to the past to change the future.

FTS: Who were your musical influences growing up, and how do they differ from your current ones?

Velvet Starlings:  Growing up it was The Beatles, The Doors, The Who, Blur, Jack White. So a lot of psychedelic rock and garage rock. Today it’s Thee Oh Sees, King Gizzard, Sleater Kinney and Pond – which is different but still psychedelic and garage rock haha.

FTS: Every band has their own way of creating songs – what is your songwriting process like?

Velvet Starlings: Normally something comes to me when I pick up an instrument and I record it if I like it. To me songwriting is the meeting of chord structures and leading melodies (instruments or vocals) and then lyrics. Everything else is implied based on the situation and is decided during the recording process. It’s kind of cynical way of looking at it, but I’d say it applies to just about every piece of music ever. If you can’t play it broken down and evoke the same emotion, then it’s probably the performance or the production that you like, not the songwriting.

FTS: What’s your favourite – and least favourite – thing about being a musician?

Velvet Starlings: Least favorite: no money
Favorite: everything else!

I genuinely love everything that comes with being a musician and couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

While their new single “HG Wells” is only available to out European readers, everyone else can check out the rest of their discography on Spotify!