Alice Merton | 5 Minutes With

Since exploding onto the scene in 2019, Alice Merton has become a household name in the world of pop music. It was her debut single ‘No Roots’ that made millions aware of her talent and in the years that followed, she’s taken her artistry to new heights. Now Alice returns with her 5 track EP ‘Heron’ which showcases a wonderfully upbeat take on the highs and lows of everyday life. Citing her move to London as a catalyst for self-reflection which is behind many of the stories we hear on the project. From the introspective nature of ‘how well do you know your feelings?’ and ‘pick me up’, Alice finds comfort in portraying a level of  vulnerability which makes the EP a relatable listening experience.

Celebrating the release of ‘Heron’ we spoke to the artist about the inspiration behind the project, what messages she hopes transcend to listeners, as well her excitement to go on tour ahead next month. You can read our conversation below. 

Hey Alice, congrats on the release of ‘Heron’! How did your creative journey in music begin? Was it always a dream of yours to become a musician? 

I always wanted to be a singer, but I started out classically so I originally set out to be an opera singer. Very different I know!

Who were some of the artists that you took inspiration from at the start? 

At the very start it was very much artists like Regina Spektor, Fiona Apple and Kate Nash. 

2019’s ‘No Roots’ served as a powerful introduction to listeners which has racked up over 363 million streams on Spotify alone. Were you initially surprised at how well your music was instantly received? 

Yes I was quite shocked. I wasn’t expecting it at all, I was just hoping I’d be able to tour with the EP and then write an album.

What were some of the influences behind your new EP ‘Heron’? 

I’d say most influences are conversations I’ve shared with friends, and also conversations I’ve had with myself of figuring out what I actually want to achieve and do in this life time. 

The singles ‘Pick Me Up’ and ‘Run Away Girl’ offered fans a glimpse of what was to come. How do the tracks compare to the rest of the material on the EP?

I think the other tracks are continuations of some of the questions I’d been asking in ‘Pick Me Up’ and ‘Run Away Girl’. They all surround big questions about life and about who and where we are meant to be. 

You’ve recently moved to London, what kind of role did the city have in the direction of ‘Heron’? 

The city inspired a lot of the lyrics, but also the people I met here. There’s some lines in the songs that refer to my time living in London such as “My nights tend to wander, the streets of Avonmore, my nights tend to get lost, between the broken corridors” which referred to where I was living in London and how broken down some of the buildings were around me. 

Lyrically, ‘Heron’ displays a tender introspective nature, often channeling the highs and lows that come with life. How important is it to you for your artistry to be honest and translate relatable messages?

I think it’s very important for me to be honest in my songs and sing about things that come from true feelings. I don’t think I would enjoy the experience of singing them otherwise. 

Your fans don’t have to wait long before you take your new music on tour, are you excited to be back on the road in North America again next month?

Very excited! It has been a long time since we have toured the US as a headline act, so I’m interested to see what happens!

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Words: Jake Wright
Photography: Elias Koehler