Thomas Headon and Sycco - two faces of pop's future - interview each other

Thomas Headon and Sycco - two faces of pop's future - interview each other

Off the back of Thomas Headon's new The Goodbye EP and Sycco's latest single Dribble, the two pals have a chin wag about... everything.

We've been going on and on about the next generation of Australia's pop world for a while now, but two acts at the forefront of it are Thomas Headon and Sycco. They're both acts that reflect the youth of Australia's pop scene, being musicians who have only just arrived but are already looking forwards into future paths that feel close to tomorrow's sounds. With that in mind, they're also acts bound to define what the future sounds like; musicians who represent the next generation, and the art this generation are able to make based on the constantly-shifting lives they experience.

In 2020, Thomas Headon and Sycco show this better than anyone else. There's Headon - raised in Melbourne, but now based in London - who has shown off his chops throughout the course of 2020, making a debut with a string of singles leading to a debut EP at the start of this year, which itself preluded a break-out single Loving You shortly after. Since then, another run of brilliant singles lead to Thomas Headon being named a 2020 break-out, further established by a second EP this year, through last week's The Goodbye EP.

It's an EP that grapples with Headon's talent in writing this breezy wind-swept pop music, but in a way that isn't afraid to go deep into its creator and be reflective of a well-rounded and multi-faceted musician of today. "I wrote The Goodbye EP over the course of a year or so," he explains. "I'd just moved to a completely new environment and was in this time of meeting and seeing all these different people. A lot of the songs on this EP to me are a call for attention, whether that be from the girl I was into at the time, new friends or even myself. It's kinda just a diary of my interactions over the past year."

Sycco, meanwhile, is someone everyone is talking about. After a single in 2018 and another in early 2019, the 18-year-old Brisbane musician made a grand entrance with her 2019 break-out single Peacemaker, which in 2020, has been further built on with two singles that showcase Sycco's grasp on high-tier homegrown pop music: Nicotine and Dribble. The latter arrived back in July and hasn't really left our rotation since; an earworm that will constantly capture your attention and grow on you, no matter how much you liked it to start with.

Like Thomas Headon's above, Sycco is someone similarly embracing honestly and personality in pop music, keeping things authentic and open whether that be lyrically, or reflecting on how particular songs come about. Take Dribble, for example, and how someone ten years ago may say its darkness lies into some deep, intimate truths layered underneath, but for Sycco, were just because her and her producer were "tired and hungover."

They're both brilliant releases by brilliant acts who really represent our bright future, so to celebrate their respective successes and allow them to mingle with the hope they'd eventually come up with the idea to collaborate mid-chat (or something of that ilk), we got the two fresh faces to interview each other, and the results are simply incredible.

Dive into it all below:

Sycco (S): Hello sir Thomas Headon, how are you feeling at the moment?

Thomas Headon (TH): hello ma'am I am doing well thank u for asking. This morning I had some terrible juice it was so bad but I saved it with a croissant so we move.

TH: What would you be doing right now if you weren't a musician? Would you be a chef or something I get those vibes from you...

S: When I was growing up, I made the HOTTEST mud cakes outside, they were so sick. So maybe I would have been a chef but I reckon I would actually ride a motorbike and deliver mail to people's homes - it always looks so fun.

TH: How is Brisbane right now, just in general? It'll never be Melbourne I know but how is it? do u like it? do u ever wanna move?

S: I am LOVING Brisbane, I feel so lucky and grateful to be here. I definitely want to move one day but not at the moment - there are a lot of happy people here in Brisbane.

S: What's your fave song of YOURS and why? What part of what song makes you go OOO?

TH: man idk that's hard. The last song on my first EP was called Her and I just think it's well written for me lmao. If we're talking songs that make me go OOO though, man Loving You is an OOO banger.

TH: YOU have mentioned to me before that you’re quite into producing your own music, how'd you get into that and what do you enjoy most about it?

S: WELL Thomas, I saved up all year in grade 10 to buy an iMac and then I bought it and proceeded to buy Logic and make music on it! I love the freedom to do whatever I want - NO limitations.

TH: Speaking of what you enjoy the most, Sycco, Sasha, Co-worker: what's your least favourite part of what you do?

S: Um this is the hardest question. I think it would be waiting. I love everything though, what is there not to love. ??????

S: What’s your star sign?

TH: I'm a Leo, i don't exactly know what that means or what that's meant to tell me. Is being a leo a good thing? a bad thing? Do I radiate leo energy? Leo is also a name why isn't any other star sign really a name?

TH: When’s your birthday?

S: I was born on the 26th of August - big papa virgo vibes!

S: You say in your latest song, Focus, “wearing corduroy as socks” do you think maybe we could get this in focus merch format? Because that sounds like the comfiest fabric for your feet ever.

TH: Sasha you're hired this is a genius merch idea. However, in the song I say that to reference the fact that corduroy socks are probably quite fancy and far too cool for anything that I'd wear, so I'm not sure if it'd work out best in my favour if everyone who's wearing my merch would then immediately become cooler than me. Bit of a stab in the foot from my end.

S: What was the writing process for Loving You and Focus like?

TH: Both were session songs! Practically every song besides 1 on my first EP was written in my bedroom, but both Loving You and Focus were written in sessions. Loving You was with a friend of mine, Josh Grant, here in London. He's now moved to LA but we still work together a lot. Focus was also done with a friend of mine, Stephen Barnes. I really like writing with both of those guys because I feel like I can be perfectly honest, hopefully they feel like that too. Loving You took a while to write, we had the chorus done before we wrote anything else, whereas Focus was written entirely in like 2 hours which was cool it was like a whole creative vomit lmao

TH: Your SYCCODELIC playlist on spotify features a great range of bangers, from frank ocean to clairo to remi wolf to even tom misch:::: when you listen to music what do you listen to more, lyrics or music itself, or danceability, or vibes, or what?

S: I really like this question Thomas. It varies on every song, I listen to Clairo for lyrics, Remi Wolf for vibes and danceability, and Tom Misch on vibes. Sometimes I just wanna vibe, or sometimes I wanna sink into myself and resonate with someone's words, ya dig?

S: When you first started making demos who inspired you and who’s your current inspiration?

TH: errrrrmmmmm originally I think like many teenage boys Ed Sheeran really made me go "wow I can do that". That was when I was like 13 and really getting into music, now I'm inspired by heaps of people. The 1975, Harry, Rex Orange County, Tyler the Creator, Pop Party Hits of 2000 and Beyond, the list goes on ! I think nowadays I just really like making music, it's fun to have heaps of songs so I just don't really wanna stop anytime soon.

TH: Ok not to be lame but you’re my favourite thing in Australian music right now so tell me who is yours who are you EXCITED FOR?

S: Thomas, I think it’s a little unfair to say you because you’re not living here so I’m going to say Memphis LK, I think she is an absolute BOSS!

S: Thomas, loving you is honestly a perfect song - just had to say.

TH: SASHA I HAVE HAD NICOTINE ON REPEAT EVER SINCE I FOUND IT THERE IS NO BETTER SONG ON THIS EARTH THAN NICOTINE, VERY CLOSELY FOLLOWED BY DRIBBLE. thank u man, appreciate it very much. means a lot coming from someone who's music I admire very much x

TH: ur lucky enough to have played many shows in ur life so far, tell me about ur favourite one so far.

S: I think it was the last show I played before Brisbane went into lockdown - 2 weeks or so before - it was ‘Nine Lives Festival’ and I was so present and felt so much love from everyone - we were all straight up vibing.

S: Can I ask about when you first recognised your love for Harry Styles and how that love has blossomed over time?

TH: hahahahahaha well my sister was a really big One Direction fan, she's really influenced a lot of my music growing up. Whatever she was really listening to I was too kinda. So whenever One Direction was on I was vibing along too and that was probably the very beginning of it. But for real though now Harry's music actually goes so hard, Fine Line is a killer of an album and his first record was just as good too. He's killing it, my love will never stop blossoming.

TH: Who's your favourite person in the world, and give me 3 justified reasons if it isn't Harry Styles?

S: Favourite person in the world is
?
?
?

S: If you could collaborate with any artist at the moment who would it be?

TH: Goooood question I'm not really sure. It'd have to be a rapper I think... as much as I'd love to write songs with people like Harry or Rex Orange County etc, I think it'd be sick to have like A$AP Rocky on a song, or Tyler the Creator or Jaden Smith. They're all really interesting guys and I feel like they'd have such a different way of approaching a song than most people.

TH: SASHA UR SENSE OF DRESS IS VERY COOL WHERE DO U SHOP !!!!!

S: I never shop, I’m such an uncomfortable person to shop with - my eyes can’t see what clothes look good or bad.

S: On your Spotify bio you said you won the year 10 maths award, how did that feel?

TH: Ah, let me take you back real quick. Be me; 16 year old Thomas, has pretty good grades but nothing amazing, mum is proud of me but wants me to do better, sister is much smarter than me and has always been the academic one of the family. It's the end of year assembly, I know I'm not winning anything, why would I? I haven't succeeded greatly in anything school related this year? My tie is probably half undone, shirt untucked, I can't say I'm particularly interested in what's happening on stage. Suddenly, we're onto year 10. My friends are getting awards, these are people I share lunch with, sit down next to, make jokes with and most importantly I love.

We're going through subject after subject, english, science, music, french, and we arrive at maths. I like maths, I really enjoy maths. My teacher was wonderful (Mr McCabe I miss you man) and he always made sure to teach me in a way I understood everything, even if it was 1 on 1. He really took the time to make sure that I didn't just retain information for tests, but actually ensure I understood and was LEARNING. Anyway, so we're at maths, the head of secondary school gracefully leans into the microphone in the auditorium, looks down at the paper on the podium below her and the words echo across the gymnasium... "Thomas Headon". The crowd literally loses it, there is fireworks, confetti, people cheering from kilometres away. Have I just won a Grammy? is this how it feels when you win an Aria? I'm not sure, but I like it.

I walk up to the stage, shake hands with a smile frozen onto my face, collect my certificate and stand shoulder by shoulder with some of the smartest, highest achieving students in year 10. My mum's got the camera out, front and centre and she doesn't care who can't see behind her. That was it. The peak of my life. It's framed in a highly secure vault in my bedroom. You'll never find it, but it's the feeling, in the moment, and most importantly the accomplishment that will always matter to me. Anyway yeah man felt good.

TH: where does the name SYCCO come from. it's cool.

S: Thanks. It came from psychedelic! I was listening to a lot of psychedelic music at the time and it started off as a psych-rock project, then I just spelt it wrong and yeah I don’t know why but I quite like it too. {Pron. psycho}

S: What’s next THOMAS HEADON!?

TH: mannnn I'm not sure! I'm in the process of releasing my second EP right now, after that I wanna take some time writing as many songs as possible for the third. All in all I just wanna make better music, keep working by myself and with my friends, I think I'm coming back to Australia for summer so that should definitely help too. Not sure ! Keep vibing.

TH: whats next for u, SYCCO?? plans, ideas, thoughts?????

S: Well I’m actually about to record some vocals and then eat some din dins!

Follow Thomas Headon: FACEBOOK

Follow Sycco: FACEBOOK

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