DON'T LET her long braid and big eyes or her fascination with the Spice Girls fool you. On her debut album, No Mythologies to Follow, Mø has more in common with early, angst-ridden PJ Harvey than you might expect.
"Mø is an old Nordic word for a pure, young, and unspoiled girl," the Danish electropop singer explains. That doesn't paint an entirely accurate picture, though, as her album is equipped with the "parental advisory" sticker due to lyrics about disillusioned youngsters, tragic love, and the fear of becoming one's darkest dream. "I'd describe it as electronic indie pop rooted in hiphop, soul, and punk," she says. "It's about being a young and restless individual, striving to figure out how to navigate this crazy modern world."
The 25-year-old was born Karen Marie Ørsted in Odense, Denmark. No Mythologies to Follow was released in March, and is already a huge hit in her native country. Underneath the seductive surface of its catchy dance-friendly tracks, a raw, melancholic, almost desperate feeling lurks.
Thanks to Twitter, Mø got her dream producer on one of the tracks. "In an interview with DIY magazine, I was asked to name my dream collaborator, and I replied Major Lazer," she says, referring to Diplo's electronic music project. "Then a guy who had read the interview tweeted Diplo, 'Please make this happen,' and Diplo tweeted back, 'We love her!' A month later we hooked up for a recording session in Amsterdam. That was awesome," Mø says, laughing.
Now she's on the road for her first major tour overseas, something she's fantasized about since childhood. "What makes a performance magical is when you're able to feel the artist's presence and joy behind the music," she says. "When you can see in their eyes that they mean every word they put to paper when writing the songs. That energy is what I'm aiming for when I perform, as well as letting go completely by not thinking about whether I look stupid or sing perfectly all the time."
Mø often ends her show with a cover of the Spice Girls' "Say You'll Be There. "As a little girl I was the biggest Spice Girls fan," she says. "My version is a nostalgic interpretation turned into a dark Mø version. The Spice Girls inspired me to become a musician."