“We’re incredibly grateful and appreciate so much that people engage with the music we make. That’s what keeps us going and has influenced us to keep growing and creating.” These are the words of Eli & Fur, a London based duo that embodies the spirit of resilience and creativity in the ever-evolving world of music. For every lover of melodic electronic sound, Eli & Fur have become a staple. Their tracks and mixes are like a portal to another dimension, offering respite from the chaos of daily life.
With a friendship that has spanned over 15 years, their journey is a reflection of the power of collaboration, underpinned by a shared passion for music that resonates across global audiences. “We have stayed true to our sound, focusing on the journey and not giving up,” they reflect, a statement that captures the essence of their long-lasting partnership and artistic integrity.
Our interview touches on the creative journey of Eli & Fur, the story behind their captivating ‘live’ rendition of ‘You’re So High,’ and insights into how they juggle the rigors of touring with fostering new talent for their label NYX.
header photography by Michael Allen
Congratulations! With “You’re So High” amassing over 150 million streams globally, how do you feel about the worldwide impact of your music?
Thank you! It still feels unbelievable to us that so many people all over the world listen to our music. We’re incredibly grateful and appreciate so much that people engage with the music we make. That’s what keeps us going and has influenced us to keep growing and creating. We received a message from a fan just this week saying that her young daughters (5 and 8) watch our Cercle set all the time. They just got their first keyboard and literally play music all day because of watching our set – this is everything to us, to be inspiring anyone, but especially young females, to get into music!
With the new “live” version of “You’re So High” just released, can you share what inspired this version?
We filmed a little live jam of us singing this version in Fur’s bedroom. The response was so incredible from the fans online, we decided to release the track properly. It’s a more stripped back version of the track, taking it back to its roots, just vocals and some gentle instrumentation. We love to explore the full spectrum of our musical tastes as artists, and the more introspective side of what we do is just as important to us as the music we make for the dancefloor.
You’ve also announced the relaunch of NYX Music. What are your goals and hopes for the label?
Our label has mainly been an outlet for our own music over the years, but we’ll be signing a lot of artists going forward and have some exciting releases on the horizon. We have been finding some incredibly talented up and coming artists from all over the world; we plan for it to be diverse, limitless, and beautiful.
“It still feels unbelievable to us that so many people all over the world listen to our music. That’s what keeps us going and has influenced us to keep growing and creating.”
How do you balance your own artistic output with discovering and promoting new talents?
Balancing artistic output is always challenging (the biggest challenge actually comes from a hectic touring schedule), but actually discovering new talent is an almost organic process for us and something we enjoy very much. And we love to give new talent a platform to grow.
You’re currently in the middle of your Australian tour. What have been some highlights or unique experiences from this tour so far? And how does the energy of the audience in Australia compare to other places you’ve performed?
Eli: WOW, we love Australia so much! We don’t get to come here very often as it’s so far away, but it’s always a highlight. And the energy of the audiences is right up there, everyone is super positive and just up for a good time. This past weekend I had 5 shows in 48 hours, which might be a personal record. It was exhausting but wonderful, the crowds always fill me with a really special energy. I like to take in some of the local scenery also while I’m there. I’ve dabbled in some sand surfing and climbed Sydney Harbour Bridge on this trip as well as eating some amazing food. Love it here!
How do you feel about performing at the PROPER NYE/NYD festival in San Diego to kick off 2024?
Extremely excited! San Diego is a favourite of ours. Had such a great time when we were last there at Beach House. Always love the NY shows.
“We plan for our label to be diverse, limitless, and beautiful.”
After such a busy tour schedule, how do you plan to relax?
We’re actually taking off 2 months at the start of 2024 – we like to do this every year to decompress and reset, and it also gives us lots of time and creative space to focus on making new music. It’s a very sacred time of the year for us and extremely important to our artistic output and also our health.
Having been a part of the music scene for over a decade, how do you perceive the changes in the house and techno scene, especially in terms of technology, audience tastes, and the industry landscape?
The whole industry has changed a lot. Technology is always evolving and we love to embrace this as much as possible and stay ahead of the game. The growth of social media and the value this now has on success can put a lot of pressure on artists. It can be extremely time consuming, but at the same time it also helps us connect with our fans in a very personal way (we insist on running our own socials as this is important to us) and it helps people discover our music – so it’s a double edged sword. We love how more females are being championed and there’s definitely been a solid progression here, but we still have a long way to go!
Regardless of all the changes, one thing that has stayed the same for us is our strong friendship. We have stayed true to our sound, focusing on the journey and not giving up.
Every artist’s journey comes with its highs and lows. Can you share a challenge you’ve faced and how you’ve overcome it?
The whole COVID period was very challenging for us, but obviously this is something all artists and people in the music industry faced (and indeed people in other industries). To have your whole business literally shut down overnight was very hard.
Also, Fur’s health problems have been really difficult…aside from what Fur faces personally, we miss her being on the road at the shows so, so much. It’s really hard for both of us, but the fans have been so supportive and understanding which really helps.
Throughout your 15-year friendship, what is the most memorable experience you’ve shared that has nothing to do with music?
We have so many amazing memories just going to festivals together in our early 20s, although this did involve discovering new music, it was always just a lot of fun. Two best mates going on adventures, dancing, and letting our hair down. Fur had a Volkswagen camper van so every weekend we would be at a different festival. We have always had a great time together and those memories are super special to us.
“Regardless of all the changes, one thing that has stayed the same for us is our strong friendship. We have stayed true to our sound, focusing on the journey and not giving up.”
And how do you balance the demands of your professional partnership with the needs of your personal friendship, especially under the pressures of the music industry?
A lot of our time is spent working, we dedicate a huge amount of our lives to the project. We do try to make sure we take time out and do other things just as mates, but it’s hard sometimes not to talk about work. At the end of the day, it’s a huge part of our personal friendship, it’s what brought us even closer together and a shared passion. We are lucky enough to have taken our love of music and our friendship and turned it into a job. It’s not always easy, but most of our time spent together is a mix of creativity, catching up on life and planning for the project. We love how these things intertwine.
Eli, in a previous interview, you mentioned how easy it is to lose one’s way in the industry by agreeing to too many things. Based on your experiences, what advice would you give to emerging artists who might find themselves facing similar pressures, either in the industry or in their daily lives?
Eli: I think the bigger your profile gets, the more flexibility you have to pick and choose. However, I think it’s also important to make sure you feel comfortable and happy, that you aren’t being taken advantage of, and that you stand up for your morals and your creative vision. It’s become easier over time, and of course some sacrifices have to be made, but balancing these things and making sure you feel fulfilled and happy is important.
Fur, you’ve spoken about your diagnosis with fibromyalgia and the challenges that come with it. Has your experience with it influenced you to raise awareness about it, especially considering the platform you have in the music industry?
Fur: Yes, I speak to a lot of other people on social media about their experiences. It’s such a hard illness because everyone experiences it differently. It’s hard to explain to people and so there are a lot of communities and groups that help comfort those who are experiencing chronic pain. It came to a head for me when I felt really burnt out from touring and the pain was constant. I try to talk as much as possible to people both in and out of the industry, about mental health and physical pain and how it’s affected me. It’s important to have a support system.
Had you not gone into music, what other career might have caught your interest?
Fur: A farmer or mechanic
Eli: Travel or food blogger
The most important thing in life is?
Love first, but also food and music!