Why Charli XCX Isn’t Into Bras Right Now. (Much To Her Tour Manager’s Dismay)

Also, she tells us the rudest things people say to her on Twitter.


by Michael Cragg |
Published on

Maybe you know Charli XCX, aka Charlotte Aitchison, from her ridiculously amazing debut album True Romance, which came out in 2013? Perhaps you know her as the author of Icona Pop's globe-straddling, drink-swilling party anthem, I Love It? Or as the real star of Iggy Azalea's painted-nails-emoji-in-musical-form Fancy, a song that's been at number one in America for almost two months? Maybe you've heard her own single Boom Clap soundtrack one of the many emotional bits in teen sob-fest The Fault In Our Stars? However you know Charli XCX – and by the end of the year, there won't be anyone left that doesn't – one thing is pretty obvious; she's probably the best pop star going right now.

With that in mind, we called her up to have a chat about laptop security, pussy punk and why she's not wearing bras at the moment.

Hello to you Charli! How are you?

I'm good thanks. I've just come off stage. I'm at T In The Park.

Blimey. How was that?

It was good. I burnt my feet because I wore high heels on stage and I've never really done that before. Then realised that I couldn't do that so I had to take them off and then my feet burnt on the hot stage. I need to go and ice my feet. So glamourous.

Do you think bumbags are a good festival accessory?

Yeah. I've always been down for a bumbag.

What would you have in yours at a festival?

I'd probably have mini bottles of vodka, some sunglasses, wet wipes, maybe one of those curly straws so I could drink everyone else's drink.

You're currently at number one in America with Fancy – how has it changed you?

Wow, straight in, from bumbags to changing lives.

We don't have much time Charli XCX

I don't think I have changed. The only thing that's changed about me is that I can now do one dance routine, which is pretty cool. I never thought that would happen.

I guess songwriting, like anything in life, is built on confidence, so has it helped with that at all? Or have you always been fairly confident in your songwriting?

I've always thought my songs were amazing but it's nice to hear now that other people think so too. I guess it has given me more confidence as a songwriter because even after I wrote I Love It – which was great and people loved it – it could have felt like a one-off or a fluke. Now I feel like people look at me like a pretty good songwriter, which I think is good.

Other than having good songs, what must all great pop stars have?

A great entourage. And permanently a LOLs time, you know. Permanently taking people to the best places ever. For example, I did this interview recently and I'm pretty sure I made the interviewer have the best time of his entire life. We spent all day hanging out in a disco on a photo shoot, then I took him to a (Swedish rapper) Yung Lean show, then I went and did the Macarena on stage with MS MR at a party and then I DJ-ed Barbie Girl and dedicated it to him. I'm pretty sure he had an awesome time.

I feel like us doing this chat on the phone while you're in a van driving back from a festival and I'm at home, isn't quite the same.

Yeah I know, we need to get some sort of hangout going on. You've never really been out with Charli XCX, so maybe that's the next thing. Next time we chat we could do it at a theme park or get the record label to pay for the most awesome shit.

We could go to Chessington?

Yeah, I'm ready. I'm down.

Not only is Fancy doing quite well but Boom Clap is also 'riding high' in the US. Do you feel like you're having a bit of a moment?

I suppose so. I feel people are properly kind of into it, which is cool. I feel like I've been doing this for quite a long time now, so it feels nice.

For reasons I can't quite fathom, you've not had a solo hit in the UK yet. Why do you think that is?

First of all, I haven't played here as much as I have in the US, where I seem to be playing all the time. Secondly, I feel like my first record was very much rooted in LA – the way it sounded, the way I am as a person, the way that it looked, the way it was played. I don't think my music is quintessentially British. Aside from the Spice Girls, who were more of a global phenomenon, as a child I was in awe of Britney and not British pop stars. I'm dying to connect the UK because it's where I'm from and hopefully what will happen because I think the songs I'm about to put out are really good. Then at the same time, I'm happy to be in my own little bubble so I don't really mind right now.

After your Icona Pop feature and now this Iggy Azalea one, do you worry that people might assume you're just a songwriter for hire? Or could you literally not give a shit?

I don't feel like that because Boom Clap's at number 20 on Billboard right now. I don't think I am a songwriter for hire and I certainly don't feel that way. The primary thing I want to be is an artist and right now I feel like a pop star more than I ever have before. I think I am one, right.

Did you feel like one before?

Around the time of True Romance I felt like I was sort of a pop star but I didn't know if I wanted to play that role yet. I was a bit unsure about whether I even liked the music industry then you know, so I was still figuring a lot out. Back when I was doing that album I felt like I could figure myself out and now I realise that I can't and probably never will and I'm much more comfortable with that. I'd rather just be a crazy bitch and a different person every day than the same person.

If I were to steal your laptop how many unfinished demos would I have in my possession?

Hundreds. And my laptop is totally not protected either – no passwords or anything. I'm technologically backwards so go ahead and steal it.

Do you have them in little folders marked 'Songs for Britney' or 'Song for Rita Ora' or whatever?

No. I don't even have folders. I don't know how to. There are songs everywhere.

How's the second album coming along? When will we get to hear it?

It's going to be released in the fall… What do we call it? Autumn? Sorry. I kept saying October and the label kept saying 'don't say that, what if it doesn't come then'. But yeah, it's out in October basically.

How would you describe it to someone who wanted a snappy, catch-all title for it? Someone like a journalist.

OK. It's pussy punk.

I liked this description: 'All the songs are bubblegum punk but, like, dripping in leather'

Yeah there you go. Did I say that?


Maybe I could be a journalist? You could be a pop star and I could be a journalist.

Oh shit. That's my dream right there

I can see you like fronting…

I'm very tall

Yeah but that's why it would be great and I think you should wear platforms as well. Like if Neon Jungle were your back-up dancers. I could see that really working.

That would be incredible. How would you define your style?

I'd say right now it's a lot of underwear. Well more nightwear. Nightwear chic.

I saw you singing some songs at The Great Escape festival and you were quite literally wearing a leather jacket and a nightie

Yeah. I went to the studio with someone the other day and I was wearing a dressing gown, slippers, slip dresses. I'm really not into bras right now, much to my tour manager's dismay. He's like 'where am I going to put your in-ears?' and I was like 'well, maybe I should pierce my nipples?' But I'm not wearing a fucking bra anymore, so.

'Where am I going to put your in-ears?' sounded like a very strange euphemism

Oh. Well, it wasn't.

Do you bother checking your Twitter mentions or is it all 'come to Brazil', 'sit on my face' etc?

Sometimes I do. I always screen-grab the funniest ones and send them to my best friends. I'll always get ones like 'choke me with your big dick and then when I'm in hospital on life support come and stuff it down my throat again until I die'. They're really funny. There was another one that was like 'smack me with a brick until I'm dead and then fuck my unconscious body and them cum in my face'. So yeah I screen-grabbed that one.

Then the next one is usually 'follow me back'

My favourite ones are 'slay Queen, slay'. What does that even mean?

What's your favourite Emoji?

I like the palm tree right now. Tropical, basically.

I like that your Instagram feed is a mixture of pictures of Baby Spice and Courtney Love – do you think you exist somewhere inbetween?

I suppose so, yeah. Except I'm the brunette version of whatever that person inbetween is.

Would you ever dye your hair blonde?

I used to want to have blonde hair as a kid, but now not so much. I wanted to dye it green for quite a while.

That would look good

Oh my God, maybe that's what we can do together? We could each go and get our hair dyed green.

Can we get a tattoo?

No. No no no no. I can't fuck with that. Sorry. I'm too indecisive. How about this? I could pick a tattoo for you and then you could get it.

I would do that.

You would? I'm holding you to that.

Bye Charli XCX!


Follow Michael on Twitter @MichaelCragg

**Pre-order Boom Clap here. **

Picture: Getty

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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