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November 21

Spice Girls & Bondage: Liz Nistico of HOLYCHILD

By Ella Miista
We recently had a chance to chat a bit with Liz Nistico of HOLYCHILD. The LA girl told us about growing up, music and why she values honesty so much. Where does your music come from? What’s your song writing process like? My music and art in general is inspired by people I interact with. I'm constantly trying to understand why people act the way the do, why we feel one thing is pretty and another is not. Beyond that I'm perplexed by the concept of perfection. These things really inform my art. As for the songwriting process, it's different every time. All of our songs are written 50/50 between me and Louie, in terms of the chord progression, rhythm, and melody. Sometimes it will come in a dream, sometimes Louie will have an amazing chorus melody. It's always different. Then I go away when the song is 100% complete and I write the lyrics. It's very fluid and in the moment. You and Louie are constantly travelling together. What’s it like spending all that time together? How does that push your music? Yes, we're together a lot! Honestly, Louie is so sweet and nice and respectful. It makes being with him really easy. He really inspires me because he's genuinely interested in other people and their lives and helping them to be better people. When I met him that was what I was most impressed by, because he is so talented and a lot of the time talented guys can be assholes and Louie was the exact opposite. It's also nice to be around him because he is progressive and advocates a world of gender equality. He therefore really supports my own artistic views, which is nice. Beyond that, making music with him is just so natural. I think we spend a lot of time together and sometimes it's dramatic and sometimes it's fun, but we go through it all. Therefore when we're writing we both have the ability to just not take ourselves too seriously and let it all hang out. IMG_7999 What’s the weirdest thing to have happened while on tour? Ah, touring is so weird! Really, it's so up and down. One moment the show is amazing and the crowds are so inspiring, and the next you're filing a police report because all your shit is stolen. It's really that back and forth. That being said, hmmm, recently we were driving from Texas to San Diego and our tire blew while we were driving. For some odd reasons, it was only me, Louie and our basisst Raffi driving in our 15-passanger van. It was pretty scary to have the tire blow so we got off at the next exit and somehow got a guy with no teeth to fix the tire in a Shell parking lot. It was sunny and 100 degrees, but it started pouring rain and this guy put our CD into his pickup truck and was blasting our music – only you couldn't hear anything because the bass was so loud. I was eating Texas barbecue and I remember thinking the whole thing was so bizarre, our music playing and this guy's tools drilling on our tire and the juxtaposition of the weather and the fact that my life at that point was only on the road. You do your own styling. What’s your inspiration and how much has your nan been an inspiration in this? I do most of our styling, though I do love collaborating with stylists for special things. For instance our last tour was styled by the talented Devin Winters, and it was really fun to collaborate and be pushed farther. For the most part, I'm really inspired by textures and interesting juxtapositions, much like Miista. I also really love to channel a certain personality when I'm getting dressed. Like on a normal day I might dress sporty or hippie-like and flowy, or super sharp and chic. I really love to slip into different aspects of my personality. For HOLYCHILD I'm currently inspired by a badass feminine sport look. Like a combination of all the Spice Girls plus bondage. IMG_7998 What did your parents say when you decided to turn down school and made the move for DC and music? What’s your relationship like with them? I have an interesting relationship with my parents. For one, I've always been very passionate and when I am committed to doing something I don't really let anything get in my way. Therefore pretty much every decision I make they are supportive of. At the same time, I'm not very close with my dad. He and my mom had a very toxic relationship and when they were divorced he moved to Saudi Arabia and I didn't see him very much after that. I was 7 then, and he kind of floats in and out of my life with varying degrees of interest in me. My relationship with him really informs my art. My mom is amazing and so sweet, and she always did whatever she could for me and my little sister. We didn't have a lot of money when I was growing up and she was so generous, giving me everything so I could go to dance class or perform. People are so interesting. There was a lot of distrust and lies and sadness around me when I was growing up, and it has made me slightly cynical but it has also made me want to alleviate pain for people in some way. I really value honesty now. Performing to a huge audience can be both scary and exhilarating. How do you get your chakras aligned for a gig? Yes! It can be intense. I need to be alone before shows, and really connect with myself. I have a ritual of warm ups for my voice and body, and then beyond that I like to just trust myself and allow myself to be in the moment. I love connecting with people so it's really invigorating to be on stage and make eye contact with someone and know you're together in the present. It's addictive. One thing we can never resist is getting tips from locals for our next trip to god knows where. What’s your favourite spot in LA? Club Tee Gee. It looks like a strip club inside but really the ceilings are glitter and the seats are vinyl and there's usually no one in there to fuck with the jukebox. :) Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 10.13.53 Follow HOLYCHILD on Facebook and Instagram.
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