Hello and welcome to DIY’s introducing feature, Get To Know… which aims to get you a little bit closer to the buzziest acts that have been catching our eye as of late, and working out what makes them tick.
Today, we’re bringing you a bonus edition of Get To Know… ahead of SON Estrella Galicia’s latest takeover of Hackney’s Paper Dress Vintage, which is happening tonight(!) and will feature a line-up of ace new acts including London-based duo Prima Queen and Spanish act Shanghai Baby.
This isn’t the first time we’ve chatted to Ade Martin though; the former bassist of Madrid quartet Hinds, she launched her very own solo project back in 2021 and has since released her debut EP - the aptly-titled ‘EP01’ - and is preparing to share it follow-up. Now, ahead of her live debut in London as part of the SON Estrella Galicia show, we’re learning a little bit more about what’s gone into creating Shanghai Baby…
What’s your earliest musical memory?
My parents are always listening to music, they always have the radio [on] what would be our Spanish BBC 4. So they rarely played a record from start to finish. My dad always says he hates what he calls “tinned music” cause he likes the live factor about the radio. So I don’t remember a specific record that my parents would play all the time, but my dad would record his favourite shows on tape to be able to listen again, although he never did. There was this show when I was about 4 or 5 where the host would think of a word and play songs that contained that word. I remember the one with the word “sun” where they played 'Here Comes The Sun' by The Beatles, and I loved the feeling that the song gave me and asked for it again and again. But as it was a radio show that we had taped, and my dad didn’t want to ruin the tape - or that was the excuse - I would have to listen to the whole thing and wait for the song to come up. So I remember sitting down waiting and then getting sooo excited when hearing the start of it.
Which artists have most inspired you around this new project?
For 'EP01' I was listening to The Strokes, Billie Holiday, Bodega, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Spoon, Amy Winehouse, Dean Martin, Public Access TV… And for the second EP I’ve been more into Shame, Bombay Bicycle Club, LCD Soundsystem, New Order, IDLES, PJ Harvey, of Montreal, Suicide…
‘EP01’ came out last year; can you tell us a little bit about what went into creating it? What did you hope to achieve with it?
It really was one of the best experiences ever. As I was still part of Hinds when I started it, the pressure was completely off. I was already doing all the things you want to do when you have a band, so I just wanted to see what it felt like writing and recording my own songs and I loved it. For a very long time it stayed like that, just as something to enjoy and not feel pressured by. So at the beginning I just felt excited to have been able to record something and actually liking it and then it being out. Now I’m more ambitious about it and I want to put more work and effort on it, but at the beginning, it was super chill.
What track are you most proud of from the EP?
Mmmm it keeps changing but right now 'Checkmate' makes me feel like I did something cool.
Who would be your dream collaborator in the future?
Right now, The Hellp.
You’re from Madrid; what other artists in the Madrid music scene should we be checking out? What’s the music scene like there right now?
I think it’s a really cool time for music in Madrid right now. There are lots of different new artists coming up and everything feels super fresh. La Paloma, Maria Escarmiento, Epona HD, Shego, Aiko el Grupo, Irenegarry, Amore, Jimena Amarillo, Cora Yako, Lucy Morry, Rusowsky, Mori, Tristan, Ralphie Choo, Dinamarca… and really, I could keep going for a while.
What’s the story behind your most recent single ‘Is This The Right Time’? How does it compare or differ to the tracks on ‘EP01’?
I’d say I was at a breaking point in my life when I wrote that song. It actually helped me a lot writing it - it made me realise things I didn’t know I was feeling.
I actually recorded that song as part of what will be the second EP, but every time I’d listen to the whole thing, it felt more and more like this song didn’t belong with the rest of them. It’s like a bridge between the two EPs. The sound belongs more to 'EP01' while the attitude and the lyrics and the way of singing feels more like the new stuff.
If people could take away one thing from your music, what would it be?
I guess I’d like people to feel inspired by it. Not because I think it’s inspirational to the world or that I invented something new haha. Just because when I really like something, I immediately get inspired by it and I love it when that happens.
You’re going to be playing your first ever show in London this week with Estrella Galicia; how excited are you?
Yeeeeessss, of course! London has always been a special place to me. I lived there when I was 15 and that’s when I discovered the 2000s indie music which has always been my inspiration. And then from all the Hinds shows I played along those nine years, London was always incredible. From the beginning we always felt so welcomed and somehow like we belonged to the London scene a little bit. So many good memories.
What should people expect from your set?
I don’t know to be honest. As I haven’t played that many shows yet, [I feel like] every one of them is different. I guess I’m still finding my vibe haha.
What have you got planned for the rest of the year?
I can’t wait to put the new EP out. I’m looking for the right partner to put it out with, so hopefully new music soon!
Shanghai Baby will play at Paper Dress Vintage in Hackney on Thursday 14th September as part of the SON Estrella Galicia showcase. Join the waiting list for tickets here.
This feature is brought to you as part of our paid media partnership with SON Estrella Galicia.