It’s hard to work out if the past couple of years could have gone any better for Robby Hauldren and Freddy Kennett.
Forming Louis The Child together back in 2013, the duo have toured as The Chainsmokers’ opening act, eventually leading to Kennett crafting the drop to Closer with the aforementioned chart-botherers mid-downtime on the tour bus. Around the same time, Taylor Swift included early single It’s Strange on one of her own publicised playlists, aptly titled: “New Songs That Will Make Your Life Awesome (I Promise).” The track would go on to appear amidst the FIFA 2016 soundtrack before Louis The Child would conquer the likes of Governor’s Ball, Lollapalooza and Coachella to (understandable) high acclaim.
Straight off the back of a stellar set supporting Justin Bieber at BST Hyde Park, we talk conquering Europe, our own fav Elohim and tackling London shows with the duo undoubtedly set to storm the future of electronic music.
How has London been treating you both? Do you find there’s a contrast between shows over here and shows back home in the States?
Robby: Really good, we love coming here! We played Camden Assembly a couple of days ago which was a lot of fun, it’s cool to play somewhere like that. In the States, we play a lot more bigger venues and stages so to come out here and play a venue that still has the same energy and energetic crowd as what we are used to is so cool. It felt so much more like a one-on-one experience. Then we got to play here at Hyde Park too which is just this big-ass, huge, open-air space so the contrasts of shows in London so far has been really interesting and great for us.
Freddy: Shows like these London ones have been for us are so different that it’s hard to decide whether we prefer the large, open spaces or intimate club venues.
Robby: I think it comes down to whether it’s our own headline show or not, as in everyone in that crowd is there to see you and you alone. When we play a festival, you tend to pick up a whole array of new fans that enjoy your music off the back of seeing you live for the first time and not knowing who you are. I enjoy that element of festivals a lot.
You’ve played London before, supporting of Madeon and Porter Robinson’s joint Shelter show. How have you found opening for Madeon’s live shows over the years, given you two met at one of his gigs?
Robby: Yeah, we did! It wasn’t so much of a “let’s make a band!” kind of meeting, more of an introduction to each other courtesy of a friend.
Freddy: Madeon was our idol for a long, long time, both production-wise and live show-wise. It was a little strange when we started touring with him, only because it felt so normal even though he was one of our biggest musical idols for such a long time. It’s good taking that second just to take everything in and that’s why it didn’t feel like it was totally abnormal to us.
Robby: We’ve toured with him twice in the States now so having the chance to come out to Europe with Madeon and Porter Robinson has been such a crazy thing that just feels like normal life in the moment. A week later and we look back thinking, ‘fuck we just toured Europe with these two dudes who we’ve looked up to before we even started this project!’ We still look up to both Porter and Madeon, it will always be that way.
Did either artist give you any advice from the tour that you’ve carried with you?
Freddy: I think touring with them both set us up to be ready for playing stages that size of our own or being on a similar level. It set us up to know how to tour whilst we grow as performers and people, given we were both still very young when we started.
Robby: Together, the Shelter shows have been incredible. On their own, they also both put on insane live shows so being able to see them work together and pull in all the production, lighting and visual elements to complement their show has been really inspiring. As far as live performances, it gives us that push to up our own shows and work harder and bring different feelings into our shows.
Freddy: This Europe tour with them has really been a gateway to new audiences for us which has been really, really cool. With the London gig, people were just as crazy as they are at, say, a frat party back in the States. Maybe that’s not usual here but I fucking loved it.
Robby: I think the best crowd we’ve had though has been Santa Ana, California. That was pretty wild and probably the biggest headline show we’ve ever played. Same for Chicago, given it’s our hometown. The people there have been following us for longer than anyone else.
Love Is Alive featured Elohim, an artist we’ve been obsessing over for an age. She’s got a pretty insane fanbase, have you noticed any unity between your own fans and hers since the collaboration?
Freddie: If there has been any then I haven’t really noticed. I definitely feel that it’s inevitable whenever you do a collaboration so our fans have definitely transferred to her and hers to us but I just hope that people love that song for what that song is. I want them to feel close and happy to it, or to another human being. That was the entire point of that collaboration.
Robby: In terms of ‘dream collaboration’, I’d have to say Kendrick Lamar, Bon Iver and Kanye West have all gotta be up there. I’d like to work with Louis The Child [laughs] but they never respond to our emails… Fuck those guys…
Freddie: I think Lykke Li would be a great person to work with. Her or J Cole or Francis and the Lights.
It’s pretty hard not to mention Justin Bieber given we’re in Hyde Park on the day of his BTS headline set. If you could hear Biebs covering one of your own tracks, which would you like it to be?
Freddie: I really think he could do a pretty dope version of Strange, if we gave it a little remix.
Robby: Maybe he’d do a better version of Go, mainly because I think Freddie’s vocals on it sucks…
Freddie: Yeah, me too…
Love Is Alive EP is out now.