In their words /// Mark Mathews on ‘The Girl’

Mark Mathews

“The Girl” was born when I was sat alone in my, then, girlfriend’s house in New Zealand. I was bored and had nothing to do and so I was just sat there noodling around on my guitar. I came to find a simple melody that felt quintessentially British to me, (reminded me of early Beatles or Kinks tracks) and it had this uplifting and happy feel to it. I wanted to counter this ‘happiness’ by making the lyrics haunting and sombre, to give the song this conflict of emotions, much like the story of the song itself: The boy loves the girl and remembers how it was, but the girl has moved on, out of his life. It’s happy and sad. The light and the dark of it all.

The structure of the song was originally very different to how it is now. It originally was: Verse – Verse – Verse – Outro. It slowly built up, until the huge Outro came in as the pay off. However, although good, it wasn’t very instant and lacked the kind of pop-feel it had the capability of being. So, it was re-worked to have the outro as the chorus and to play out in a more conventional pop format of: Verse – Verse – Chorus – Verse – Chorus. This suited the song a lot more and was more in line with the influences of The Beatles and The Kinks, that I mentioned before.

The music video for it was shot over 2 days at 3 different locations in London. The Director, Pardeep Sahota, was inspired by a scene in “A Hard Days Night”, and wanted to have me, alone, in a TV studio thinking of “The Girl” and the relationship I used to have. The memories are reflected through the use of VHS footage of this relationship that slowly degrades as it begins to fall apart. It was a lot of fun to make and we also made a series of Interactive videos so as the viewer could play the part of “The Boy” or “The Girl” to get a back story to this faux relationship…although, not being an actor I was pretty uncomfortable with the scenes. 

Check out the interactive videos for ‘The Girl’

 

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