Rising Electropop Band Stats Debuts Funky 'Lose It': Exclusive

Robin Pearson
Stats

Stats is led by Dua Lipa band member Ed Seed.

First came office job drudgery, then a chance to tour the world with a couple of trendsetting pop acts. Now, Ed Seed's own promising electro band Stats is about to release its debut full length, titled Other People's Lives. Stats have shared a couple of tracks from their upcoming album so far, and Billboard has their latest premiering exclusively below. 

Stats, a London sextet playing Roxy Music and LCD Soundsystem-influenced full-band dance music, is gearing up to release Other People's Lives Feb. 15 on the British indie Memphis Industries. The group has been gathering hype in its homeland, particularly since last year's "Rhythm of the Heart" single, which got airplay on Elton John's personal Beats1 radio show.

It all started when Seed, a veteran of numerous "scrappy indie bands" (as he calls them), got rescued from his day job to play in the ascendant, "Bulletproof"-famous alt-pop band La Roux. When that project became less active, he joined up with Dua Lipa's backing band, back when the London-born superstar was a near-unknown. Obviously, that became kind of a big thing. Now, he's pausing from playing guitar and keys on "New Rules" and "IDGAF" to take care of his newborn son and his band's soon-to-be newborn album. 

Check out "Lose It" below, along with a Q&A with Seed that proves just how connected the new family member and new music are. 

How has playing live with Dua Lipa and La Roux shaped the music you create with Stats?

La Roux was my first pop touring gig (and a total fluke). I'd always been in scrappy indie bands. Then I met [La Roux frontwoman] Elly [Jackson] and her crew and thought wow, this kind of pop music -- I always thought it only happened over in Hammersmith, you had to have tens of thousands of pounds and a major label. But I realized you didn’t need a huge budget to make something more stylish than your average band. With both La Roux and Dua, it was great working for people who were on a scale and level way above where my own work was, because it was inspiring: it made me want to do things better.

Dua Lipa has exploded in popularity over the past year; what's it been like being a part of that experience?

Astonishing. Dua and her team are the hardest working, but also the nicest people, and it's always been that way. From the first rehearsals and tiny pub gigs, there was a sense that this was one of those occasions when talent, vision, dedication, and resources were aligned. We did two years of constant touring up the levels; I remember shouldering brutally heavy flight cases across a vast car park in Detroit to some shonky venue fire-escape. When I came off the road to look after the baby, this never felt like just another job I was leaving, with perfectly nice colleagues who I'd never see again; they’re all very precious people to me, and of course we’re all still great friends. Dua and her family have also been incredibly supportive of Stats. Between Dua and her mum and dad, they've been to pretty much every show we've done, which is so touching to me.

What life experiences were most influential in shaping this song and album?

The biggest thing was definitely the birth of my son. I'd been touring for two years playing in Dua Lipa's band, but when Levi was born, I quit to stay home and look after him. We were already well into the making of this album by that point, but living in the hallucinatory dreamscape a new baby brings, that really pulled it onto a new axis -- cosmic-domestic, or something like that? Shortly afterwards, our mates Talk Show Records released "Rhythm Of The Heart" [a recording of Levi's heartbeat from the first scan is mixed into the song], and people really responded to it: we had great support from BBC 6 Music, Spotify, Beats1 and lots of others. Having heard the song on the radio, Memphis Industries got in touch with me. Then it was lovely and simple; I sent them the rest of the record and they immediately understood and believed in it.

It sounds like you're singing about some kind of escape on "Lose It." If so, what do you think is driving that?

Escape, yes, but maybe more liberation? Liberation from myself, from my possessions, from my data, my routines, my past -- liberation to live another way. Part of it is just the idea of disappearing. It horrifies me, but I also crave it. Maybe it's also about not being a kid anymore: you find yourself looking around your flat at all this stuff you've acquired and it sort of sickens you. And just at that moment, if offered, you'd gratefully let it all vanish.

But mainly to me it's about liberation from ego, being freed from your Self. I put together the music for this tune very early one morning, while the baby was sleeping. Later that day I took him to the supermarket, and on the walk home the words and vocal tune came out of thin air. I still have the voice memo of me walking down the road pushing the buggy and shopping, singing it to myself so I wouldn't forget it. Looking after a baby requires you to let go of a lot of stuff that no longer seems important, because their needs are so vital; they're little animals and they bring out the animal or instinctive part of you, so you discard a lot of vanities. Weirdly, the feeling this most resembles to me is dance floor liberation: the sense of being a human mass more than an individual, freed from language, freed from conscious thought, all physical, all instinctive. Which is of course another way that you can lose it.