Features | Photos | Music | Blog


Collective nouns are fun aren’t they? And so quintessentially English. You get a harvest of mice, a murder of crows, a parliament of owls, and a GAGGLE of alternative East London female performance musicians.

Gaggle are a 22 strong all-girl choir with members from across the globe who set out with one thing in mind, to scare.  Platform sat down with Deborah, the queen bee in the Gaggle hive, as her and the rest of the group prepared for a rehearsal at their home away from home, The George Tavern. Oh, and for the Gaggle girls, ‘prepare’ means chit-chat, smoke, and drink lots of gin.


Platform: So, why are there so many of you in the group, are you really bad at rejection?
Deborah: It’s more fun! It’s also for the visual spectacle, we wanted to do something different with the group and to scare people really. Our original idea when we were creating the group was to create something that would scare people at the Old Blue Last. I thought loads of women on a stage would do that.

There are so many of you - do you ever forget who’s in the band?
One girl did leave and I didn’t notice, only because it went on for so long and she kept texting me, and so many other girls had joined. But now the girls all know each other so well - it’s become so structured, and relationships have formed so well that everybody is absolutely vital.

Would you let more girls join?
At the moment we have a waiting list of girls. But already we’re a good chunk of a plane full, so we don’t want it go any higher.  Transport might become an issue.

Why did you set out to make an all girl group?
I used to be in the band 586, plus I book bands for this pub (The George Tavern), and overall I was stuck by how boring the majority of the acts I came across were. Promoters joke about this all the time. Also, there are much fewer strong women in music than there are men. Women are normally confined to being keyboard players, burlesque acts, or the girlfriends of boys in bands, and this group is a direct response to both those things. I’d seen girls in bands trying to out-sex and out-pout each other and just thought that there must be a better way.

Your costumes are pretty special, tell us about them.
A lady called Emily Bosence designed them. She has her own label based in Brighton. I saw her on somebody else’s Myspace, and she had a great .gif of her moving around in these crazy cloaks. I thought they’d be really good, but everyone else wanted to sex it up a bit. But somehow, they are kind of flattering.  I lose about 2 stone in those things.

They all have different design on them and are copies of African fabrics. Hardly anybody got to choose what they had - it was very random and about not being too vain. Mine has some dictator from the Congo on  it who was a mass murderer.  I didn’t understand that at the time, and now I’ve got his head right on the back of my mine. I’m just worried that someone will mess with me, I think he’s in the Hague.

We thought they looked a lot like high fashion Burqas.
Ha, yes. But we’re not religious, not for any religion that already exists anyway!

Like a pride of lions does the group have a strict hierarchy with an alpha female?
I’m in charge!

What would the others say about that
That I’m in charge! Somebody has to be in charge otherwise things just wouldn’t happen - you should have seen us in the studio the other week, it was mental.  You have to record in groups with this many people, like 3 or 4 at a time.  So all the others are drinking gin and reading Closer for three hours, getting bored. You need a leader got to get them focused again.

I started giving them strange directions like ‘sing like you’re in a sauna frigging yourself’ or ‘sing like dead zombie children with rounded vowels’.  It worked.

There’s not a guitar or keyboard in sight, is this recession pop?
When you have loads of voices that are middle to high, you can’t have instrumentation. What we haven’t got at the moment is live percussion, and even though a choir is percussive you need something that gets people dancing, but also keeps us all in time. We do have one song where we just stamp and we use backing tracks made by myself and S.I.M, they range from crunk to house and are ‘mazin. But other than that we keep it simple otherwise it would sound too much.

Other that that it’s because of stuff I’ve been listening to at the moment. Micachu was my favourite, until I found Invasion last week. I like paired back stuff, or at least the percussive and bass element of it.

Crows (Rough Demo) - Gaggle

Crows (demo) - Gaggle

What’s next for Gaggle?
We’ve been going for two and a bit months live, which is nothing. But we don’t want it to be a Menswear – look at me with my Britpop reference. We don’t want to be doing shows that we can’t actually live up to, so we want to take our time.

We were always taking June off anyway to do recording, more photos, and getting the act together properly.  We’ve done 5 ten minute gigs, which is nothing for a normal band, but it’s taken loads of work, and we’ve worked harder than any normal band.

At the moment we’re blogging our socks off - Gaggle is made up of intellectuals, artists, writers and opinion markers. Plus we have some dates which we will be announcing in the next week, and a live session on resonance FM. Break is over soon!

← previous post next post →


hahahahahahhahahaahaha @ “recession pop”
interview is WIN.

Posted by Adele on June 19, 2009 at 4:44 pm

i can picture the live show being a fiery, glorious disaster.

Posted by brennan on June 24, 2009 at 2:38 pm

Join our weekly email newsletter:

Recent Comments

I really enjoy his word emphasis. …
face the consequences, smartass


Get 'enormous lash' instead, none of the side…
"have you heard of latisse?"


an eight year old sartorialist


The funniest thing woody allen ever did…
a jew for all seasons


Gees, wasn't he just asking for that…
face the consequences, smartass


New Music

Wail To God - Ape School

Good music from a band with a gimmicky name? Ape School takes it away with their heavily instrumented jam that seriously threatens to be top notch in your summer mixtapes.

Ape School - Wail To God

These Four Limbs - Kurran & The Wolfnotes
Deliciously dark and melancholic songs from an artist currently cutting a swathe through London's burgeoning new-folk scene.

Kurran & The Wolfnotes - These Four Limbs

Gazzillion Ear - DOOM

Are you still waiting for the next ephemeral summer smash indie band? Good luck and don't forget to branch out, kids, some of us will settle for the redefinition of hip hop: in comes DOOM.

DOOM - Gazzillion Ear

I might you like better - Amanda Blank

Amanda Blank is to Katy Perry as The Sex Pistols are to Busted. So sassy it's saucy, so libidinous it leches, this is this the filthiest summer hit since Oops (Oh My).


Auditorium - Mos Def Ft. Slick Rick
Go to 2:30. Wow.


Summertime Road - The Barbaras
Summer pop that's all screwed up in its head. You need bands like this to make people moaning about how weird it is that your leaving the party and it's light outside more bareable.


Most Popular

You never know how people are going…
brighton lesbians


We hung out and took pictures with…
the girls of american apparel


Colette McHugh asked strangers to dig around…
pocket portraits


One of the scariest things about buying…
making drugs for pleasure and profit


Turning 21 does little other than make…
things to do before you turn 21