On spending time in the UK...

JJ: I think it was an adventure to leave New York, and just try to make music happen in a totally foreign city. It taught us a lot about... it's going to sound a bit weird, but it taught us how to meet people we needed to meet, and putting ourselves out there. Because when we got there, we knew nobody, but we knew we wanted to play these specific venues and from there we had to figure out how to achieve those goals. It was a steep learning curve, but it was a great experience that taught us a lot.

Hana: New York can be a beast in itself as well. We didn't want to move to New York, right away, because we wanted to have some time to figure things out. We wanted to have a firm idea of what we wanted to do. Ireland allowed us to have the time to figure that out. It helped us not only figure out how we wanted to sound like but also helped us figure out how we wanted to approach things before we came back to New York. Going there and coming back taught us how to be confident in what we're doing.

Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats

On finally releasing their debut album...

Hana: It feels really good [laughs]. Being a musician is... it can be quite stable, in that you know what's going on and things tend to always be how they are. But it's also a very unstable type of situation, where you're travelling, don't know what people will say about you, how a show will go...it's a weird duality, this life. To have signed with a label, and have our album finished... it feels amazing just having it finished. What it means for us, is that we've worked so hard to get our management, label, and agents, and now we have a real chance to have our music do the talking for us. We feel that we've done our job, as the artists, and now the music can truly speak for itself.

JJ: And we believe there's something special about the music, and I can say I've never been more sure about something in my life. With this record, we just know that there's something special about it, and especially the way we sing together. And to be honest, it's really hard to describe how it feels because the way it's materialised has been exactly how we've wanted to. The way we recorded the album is how we wanted to do it.

Hana: Also the photo we got made for the cover, it's exactly what we imagined it being. We love the way that photo is vulnerable and naked... well, not 'literally' naked, don't worry [laughs].

JJ: I'm so honoured that I got to do this with Hana. It's a humbling experience having this being done and knowing I got to do it with Hana, and knowing that there are people out there who'll hear it. People who care about what we do, it's really something else.

Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats

On music taste and influences...

Hana: JJ and I have very similar taste in music. Actually, when we meet, we realized that we both have the same favourite song, which is "U Know I'm No Good' by Amy Winehouse. With people like Amy Winehouse, and other people we love like The Staves, Sylvan Esso, and James Blake, there's a vulnerability to what they do, and an honesty that goes above everything. Especially with Amy Winehouse and that song. There's something so vulnerable about it, despite how anyone is going to think about it, she's fully coming across as herself, and she's truly being herself. There's an honesty in a lot of the music that we talk, and that's definitely something we wanted to convey with our music as well.

JJ: What felt especially great is we have such a diverse taste in music, and when we approached Overcoats we didn't want to have to compromise that. When it came to writing the music, we were able to approach it in that way, so even though we love folk, we didn't find ourselves thinking we had to be a folk band, and even though we love electronic music, we didn't think we needed to be an electronic band; we just want to be both. So we're constantly straddling two genres, and actually...we want to erase 'genre' we just want to make music, give it and go 'here it is' [laughs]. To us, genre is just so unimportant. Something we wanted to achieve with our music was making sure that the songs we wrote reflected our lives in some way.

We achieved that with some of the songs on the album. For example, Nighttime Hunger is about anxiety and mental health, as is The Fog. Also our latest single, Hold Me Close, is about sexism and gender-roles. We really wanted to make things that were accessible to people, but we also come from a place of wanting to capture things that relate to our lives today, and what we're feeling.

Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats

On 'Hold Me Close'...

JJ: I think that's when a song feels truly finished for us. When they've departed from one genre, and the song is in a realm of so many genres, that it has its hands in more than one thing. That's when a song is finished to me.

Hana: We love it when people tell us that they don't know what this sounds like, but they know they like it.

JJ: We knew we wanted to release Hold Me Close first, because of that. Because it's something you can latch onto, the chorus is accessible and a bit pop, and yet there's these very folky verses. The background is electronic, and there's even this grand piano...so in a lot of ways, that track is a big embodiment of what we wanted to achieve.

Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats

On making music together and for themselves...

Hana: Totally. I think even before we began sharing our music with people, that we did have this internal feeling about how ultimately this music was for us. That we were making it for ourselves, as much as we were making it for anyone else.

JJ: When we started the band, we were going through troubles in our personal lives, romantic relationships and those shifting dynamics of... [laughs], it sounds lame now, but that dynamic of being a senior in college, I mean going through that was huge for us because you're so aware of how everything in your life is about to change. Writing music came at the perfect time, because we firmly weren't writing for anyone but ourselves, and about what we were experiencing. We wrote about having empathy for one another, putting each other in the other person's shoes, and to be honest; it really helped us to make sense of the things we were going through. I think because of that being at the root of what we're doing, it helps our music be more addictive. For us, and our listeners, that the level of honesty we display is something you don't see every day, and that people who find our music recognise that, and find themselves enjoying our music partially because of the connection me and Hana share.

I recently, I sent a private link of the album to one of our friends, and I wanted her feedback from. Her response to it, a friend who's close to us who isn't in the industry, told me that it changed her life and that it was worth us going whatever it was we had to go through to be able to make an album like this. Hearing that meant more to me, than...no offense, anyone in the music industry's opinion on the album. Compliments from your industry are nice, but knowing that people outside of our industry can hear our work, connect with it, fall in love with it... knowing that can happen, does make it all worth it. Making this album was the hardest thing I've ever done, and hearing that made me think that I'd love to do this a hundred times over again.

Hana: We're very much about the people, affecting and helping people, through our music. When we realised that was when we also realised that there wasn't a problem in calling this pop. Because all pop means is that it's connecting with people, and that is what we're doing.

Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats

On how they'd like their music to come across...

JJ: I think I want people to take what they need from the music. If they just need the music, and the sonics, then by all means. If they want to look into the lyrics, and take away our friendship as part of it then they can do that too. With our friendship being a big part of the band, I do love that it's...female friendships are something that I feel isn't expressed enough, and if someone can see our friendship and it makes them appreciate or even re-appreciate the people in their lives, then that to me would be great.

Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats
Overcoats

Overcoats' debut album YOUNG is due out on April 21st via Arts & Crafts. Check out one of the tracks from the release, 'Nighttime Hunger':