North America hasn’t exactly been friendly to the dance pop genre in the last decade unless there has been a fresh-faced teen front and centre to exploit. Last year, Lady Gaga became the exception to the rule, and now there’s plenty of room on the charts for her to share.
Trying to crack this continent’s fickle market has sent many defeated would-be pop stars back to Europe, a place where slick, synthesized pop has always been welcomed with open arms. But if you ask Victoria Hesketh, a.k.a. Little Boots, what she thinks of her chances making it in North America, she seems unfazed by the looming challenge.
“I’m not sure I will fit in with North American music,” she admits. “But I think that with Gaga and Katy Perry breaking through it does seem that maybe America is getting more into pop, so maybe it will work for me.”
If Little Boots sounds confident that’s because she knows the tide is turning. With Gaga’s aforementioned success still growing and the rise of burgeoning stars like La Roux and Lights, the moment is now for her to shine.
On her debut album, Hands, Little Boots has found the perfect amalgam of dance pop’s colourful history, touching on disco, ‘80s synth-pop and artists like Kylie Minogue and Goldfrapp, while building an identity of her own with the help of producers like Hot Chip’s Joe Goddard and Gaga’s guru, RedOne.
Hesketh sees the recent wave of female solo artists playing synths to be both harmful and helpful to her career.
“It’s kind of annoying because I think all of the girls the press puts together are very different and that’s what’s exciting about it,” she says. “They can run all of these stories about girls in nice frocks playing keyboards. But I understand why they do it and I’m sure we’ve all gotten a lot more attention because of it.”
Having previously fronted an indie band called Dead Disco and found buzz for Little Boots through indie-favouring blogs, Hesketh has already tasted pop stardom in the U.K. She’s now hungry for more.
“I think being a solo artist really suits me and I never really cared about signing with an indie label or anything,” she says. “I’m not into being an indie artist. I really just like pop music and see myself as more of a pop songwriter. On the album, I just really wrote what I felt was right to me.”