It was a frigid December day in Manhattan when we went to visit pop goth goddess Bishop Briggs at Island Records. Layers upon layers had to be worn, but once we made it inside the building, things really warmed up. Not just because the people at Island Records aren’t barbarians who live without heat in the dead of winter, but because of the company we were graced with. When Bishop Briggs entered the room along with her sister (who I continually joked should be her manager), her enormous smile emitted enough positivity to end a war. And no, I’m not exaggerating. She filled up the room with an immediate warmth that was so tangible and infectious, it made for one of our most fun interviews yet.
After being born in London to Scottish parents, moving to Tokyo, then Hong Kong, and finally Los Angeles, it’s safe to say Bishop Briggs had an exotic upbringing, unique compared to most. When asked where she was located when she decided she wanted to become a musician, she spoke about being introduced to karaoke culture while growing up in Japan. “I saw my dad performing and I was like ‘there’s nothing more that I want than to have a piece of this passion I see on stage.'” When asked if she’d ever consider moving to New York, she admitted she was considering it – until she felt the intense winter breeze. Fair enough.
Something notable about Bishop is her dark style. Flaunting a classic black Adidas zip-up with skeleton gloves, a choker, and two Sailor Moon-inspired hair buns, she creates her own character. However, although she visually has this borderline-gothic aesthetic, talking to her seemed very authentic. We touched on how broad the term “gothic” is becoming today, and when asked if she considered herself to be categorized as that, she responded, “Depends on the day. But I do think gothic kids and that whole world is becoming very ‘in’ right now. Don’t you feel they’re kind of the center of the high school cafeteria? At least thats what I hope.”
What’s even more important is the music. Bishop doesn’t even have a full album out yet and she has already garnered a massive following, specifically with her single “River,” which has 22+ million streams on Spotify alone. But it’s not hard to understand why: when you hear Bishop’s soulful voice and the enthralling punch of a chorus, it will be in your head all day long. “Wild Horses” is another dark pop song with a hauntingly eerie drop that will pump you up as much as it will give you chills. She also recently released the lyric video for her single, “Dead Man’s Arms,” with a nice personal touch, as it is actually made to look like a karaoke screen to pay homage to her past. And it’s one of her favorite songs, “Whenever I perform it live I feel angry inside.” But in a good way.
During our conversation, Bishop promised to release more music this year. While we eagerly wait, let’s dive into her world of travel, chokers, and quirky darkness via our latest and enjoyable interview.
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