Since seemingly appearing from out of nowhere at the end of January with their Solitude EP, duo DREWXHILL are making their first very successful steps, or strides rather, on the path of musicmaking. They released a single on Danse Club Records last year called 'Talk To You', did a mix for Clash magazine, released Solitude – and then another EP, Bullets (released, like the previous one, on Southampton-based label Born Electric) – and now here they are, facing the future with pocketfuls of promise and potential, a new year stretching out in front of them, the easel of time forthcoming awaiting their musical creations.

Their latest release showcases their love of sumptuous atmospheres punctuated with lush, gloriously organic percussion, washed with watercolour vox edits and mists of ambient, cosmos-drawn synth, futuristic jams scattered with aching vocals, sounding much like a vagrant crumbling cathedral on a small planetoid that is in orbit around no star but is rather a wandering entity; the sound moves from deliciously dancefloor-destined to a feel of all-encompassing chillment, sometimes a mix of the two, but it's always beautifully nocturnal and flawlessly polished.

We were lucky enough to meet Michelle Drew and Philip Hill (the people behind DREWXHILL) for a bit of a photoshoot, as well as ask them some questions via email. Here's what they had to say for themselves.

DREWXHILL

So you recently released your Bullets EP – are you happy with how it's gone?
It's always a frightening time when letting go of music and putting it out for the world to listen to. When we finished Bullets we knew we had something good, but that feeling sometimes gets distorted when it's your own child so judgement day comes when it's set free. All that being said, we have had amazing feedback and only love thus far.

What did you do differently compared to working on Solitude? Despite the two EPs being released close together the sound seems to have changed.
Time happened - in the Solitude days we were musically going in a different direction. We have definitely grown into who and what we are now and the next chapter is going to be even more defining.

How does the songwriting/making process go, is it shared or do you work on different parts separately and bring them together?
Both really. Sometimes we do each our parts and get together and build something from the respective blocks and other times it is just an idea and a blank canvas. I (Michelle) write but sometimes it will be on the piano and sometimes to track. Phil will make drafts that become basis for some writing and I will send Phil demos that he will mess around with. The tracks never seem to really pop before we both get to sit down together with them. That's our strength.

Where did you guys meet and how did you begin making music together?
We met at university. We knew that we were more or less the only two in the class who musically didn't clash and it was a mutual admiration of what each other did. The good thing about our partnership is that we trusted each others judgement from day one and that has proven immensely useful.

Who, or what, has been the biggest influence on your sound?
For us, that would be two different answers. For me (Michelle) it would be when I discovered jazz and standards because that was what would make me find my sound vocally.

For me (Phil) it was when I discovered the world of electronic music via german Techno titans Ricardo Villalobos, Dominik Eulberg, Danish Mastermind Trentemöller. Going to uni to the UK, I dived deeper into the UK electronic music scene with all its facets.

The mixture of these very diverse electronic sounds makes up the style of our music. Together we strive towards Moderat, James Blake, Stimming, Imogen heap just to mention some of our heroes.

DREWXHILL

You've been written about or featured on many places, from Majestic Casual and Hilly Dilly to the Vibe Guide and Mixmag – is it weird that everyone's talking about you?
It sounds much better when you say it like that. Haha. It's an interesting time for us. In a way you could call this the best time because we are still just us making music with no pressure and yet we still get to share our music with a few thousand people on Soundcloud and Facebook. We are at a point where we have only just started and this is the journey we have both wanted to take all our lives. It's awesome and inspiring.

So, what's next for DREWXHILL, any plans for the near (or far) future?
We have lots of plans. That's no guarantee though. Hah. We will be putting out some music but we are just sussing out how and what as of yet. We like to be very hands on when it comes to the visual aspect both artwork and videos so something that incorporates that is something we are hoping you will see next.

Aside from the music, what else is important to you?
We are both very interested in what goes on in the world and the conscious change that is happening. We discuss a lot of this when we hang out and I think it shows in our music as well. Meditation and silence and inwards activities are important to both of us as it counteracts the outwards expressions of both music and visual art that we both do.


DREWXHILL's Bullets EP is out now on Born Electric.

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