Galore Darlings: 2:54 On Sisterhood & “The Other I”

Colette and Hannah Thurlow, London’s dynamic sister duo 2:54, are champions of other-worldly atmospheric rock. The girls are beyond their years with refined and powerful music that fits right into the stand-out Bella Union roster: Pins, Marissa Nadler and Ballet School (just to name a few). On the cusp of their new album, which debuts November 10th, we chatted about their Melvins origins, communicating through music and the duality that inspired The Other I.

by: Shannon Kurlander


[cover photo by: Joseph Piper]
[album art by: Hannah Thurlow]

1. Was music (and making music) always a part of the household growing up?

Colette: We grew up in a music-loving household, bands like The Pogues, The Band and The Staple Singers were always on. We were aware of music from a young age, and fell in love with it, we began playing in our early teens. Hannah bought a guitar and taught herself to play, I started singing along. There was no grand plan, we were just growing up, having fun, exploring.

2. What were your most worn-out records from your childhood?

Colette: The first record I saved up to buy was Pearl Jam’s Vs. I listened to that record religiously as a teen. I remember noticing a girl a few years above me on the school bus had the tape of it in her art folder and suddenly feeling like I had connected to something greater in the world. It was then I think I realized music had the power to unite and create a sense of belonging and solidarity. I wanted more of that!
Hannah: I would have to say Deftones, “Around the Fur”. I love that record.

3. When was the moment you girls decided to form 2:54? Where did the name come from?

Colette: Sometimes the way finds you first. We wrote a track together called “Creeping” and it was the ignition point for 2:54. 2:54 stands for two minutes fifty-four seconds into our favorite Melvins track, “A History of Bad Men”, but it’s almost arbitrary which song or band it correlates to. The idea of 2:54 is about detail. I always loved the saying ‘the devil is in the detail’, a twist on ‘god is in the detail’. If you listen to our records, there is nothing you are hearing that we haven’t thought in-depth about. I love the absorption of it, the nurturing aspect, the focus. The moments no-one else might ever unpick but that we know exist forever. That’s what 2:54 means.

4. Your new album drops via Bella Union next month. What’s your favorite Cocteau Twins song?

Colette: “Persephone”. This song hit with such precision. I remember sitting down and playing it over and over and over again. I couldn’t believe Elizabeth Fraser’s melody, her delivery: this primal, celtic, rich R&B voice. It sounded so modern. It still sounds like the future to me and I refer back to it a lot.

5. Tell us a bit about your new album The Other I

Colette: The Other I is an enquiry into the duality of the human experience: the division between the inner and outer life. The self that pounds on like a juggernaut in your head, and the self you present to the world. The idea of The Other I, extends to Hannah and I, and our sisterhood. We know intrinsically what the other thinks.
Hannah: We know in our blood what the other feels. Music is just another language we use to communicate with one another.

6. What’s the best environment for someone to listen to your new record?

Hannah: Anywhere you can really listen to it properly! Rooftops at night are good.
Colette: I like lying down on my bedroom floor when I first listen to a record I’m excited about. Motion brings a new dimension too. Listening on train journeys. In fast cars.

7. Do you have any plans to tour the states?

Hannah: We do! We’re working on it now. Touring the states is a dream come true. We can’t wait to get back and play the new record.

8. What’s one important (and stylish) piece from your wardrobe you must pack for tour?

Hannah: Ann Demeulemeester boots.
Colette: My leather jacket with the 2:54 flag painted on the back.

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