Think of Ukraine, and pop music isn’t the first thing that springs to mind. However, one group hoping to put the country on the cultural map is the hugely talented Bloom Twins.
Meet Sonia and Anna Kuprienko – the Ukrainian-born twin sisters have been making a name for themselves on the UK’s blogosphere of late.
The pair moved to London at the age of just 16, and their subsequent journey inspires a great deal of their work, both in music and in fashion.
As fans in the UK will be aware, Ukraine has experienced years of massive political upheaval over recent times, and those troubles have a major influence on the pair’s songwriting.
Now aged 20, the pair have emerged as hugely talented musicians and fashion models, and 2017 looks to be their biggest year yet. loaded caught up with them to talk about their music and fashion as well as their plans for the future.
Loaded: Was moving from Ukraine to London a difficult choice to make?
Anna: It wasn’t a tough decision. We moved four years ago when the political situation was actually ok. It wasn’t a factor at the time. The reason why we left our home country is that we wanted to pursue our music careers in London. We’ve always liked British music… The Beatles and everything. Then only two years later things started happening in The Ukraine, and then that’s when we started writing songs about it. We couldn’t be there with our family and friends, and we wanted to do something for them and for Ukraine at that particular time.
Sonia: Yeah because four years ago Ukraine was actually still a cool place. Me and my family loved Ukraine and it was a very cool place to be, but I think that moving was like the best choice I’ve made in my life.
Loaded: What effect did coming here have on your music?
Anna: When you listen to British music, and when you’re trying to write songs in Britain, that is so different and we loved it so much. It was such a great experience. It was hard at the beginning because we couldn’t speak English, we couldn’t do anything, but it was so great.
Sonia: We were 16 when we moved to London. We were just kids, and it was a tough moment for us leaving our family, you know, we came to London to pursue our big dream, and the experience was very inspiring. It pushed us so hard to learn the language, try new things and pursue our career. It completely changed us from kids to people who wanted to make music and share it with people.
loaded: You’ve been working with Duran Duran’s Nick Rhodes, how was that experience?
Anna: Yeah we’ve learned so much. It was interesting how we started working with Nick. He’s also a great photographer, as well as musician, so he took pictures of us for Untitled magazine, and then later we were just talking, and we said ‘we also write songs’. He listened to a few of our songs and then he said, “we should write something”. Anyway, we ended up writing, like 12 songs… or maybe 16, or something like that. The experience was amazing. He pushed us really hard – after all you’re working with Nick Rhodes, you don’t want to screw up, right? I’m super glad we met him and it’s going very well so far. We also learned how to play in the dark: he has this thing where his studio has to be really dark and really cold. Not everyone likes it but we kind of got used to it. It makes it feel so magic… it’s so inspiring and felt more creative.
loaded: Has he had a big influence on your sound? Your new singles sound slightly poppier than your older stuff.
Anna: I think it’s a very subjective opinion.
Sonia: Yeah, I do agree that some people may say that it’s more poppier, but I think it’s just because our previous songs were pretty much acoustic. Now we’re bringing in a more electronic sound. It may sound a little bit poppier. I don’t mind pop in a way.
Anna: Yeah, we’re dark pop. So we’re still like sophisticated, beautiful melodies, now with some electronic sounds and bass sounds. I like it all, so I don’t really like to define myself with by the word, but if it is pop, it’s still dark.
loaded: You do some modelling work as well as making music. Do you get to express different things through your fashion?
Anna: Yeah we do modelling a bit part-time, but I see it more as 360-degrees to music. We do magazine shoots, we do interviews, we do pictures, and it’s all adding image to our music. I wouldn’t call it modelling, but I would call it being a musician.
Sonia: When we go on stage we like to dress up in nice clothes and dark makeup… fashion is about how music looks for us. We want to express ourselves so that when we go onstage people remember us. I just love all that, and I love fashion, so for me, it’s very connected. You can’t really separate our fashion and our music. That’s why it’s completely normal to do pictures as Bloom Twins – and I love it.
Anna: It’s also like a comfort zone. If you sing you have to be really comfortable, and if you like how you look that definitely helps.
Sonia: Fashion is just another art form anyway.
loaded: Your debut EP is out next year, what can we expect from it?
Sonia: What I can say is that it will be true. You will hear songs about our experience, and the people that we care about a lot. We’re trying to express our stories that we’ve experienced in life through song.
Anna: It’s our life journey; from Ukraine to London.
Watch the music video for Bloom Twins’ 2016 track below: