You’re Only Massive is an independent electronic / experimental band, formed in 2007 in Waterford, Ireland. Since 2008 they have been based in Berlin, Germany. As a male-fronted feminist synthpop duo, You’re Only Massive challenges the norms of gender binaries in electronic music, with both members producing, playing instruments and contributing vocals.
The name “You’re Only Massive” is taken from a common phrase heard in the south of Ireland. It’s a compliment, you are beautiful, you are ready for the world.
- 1 Chronology
- 2 Musical Style
- 3 Personal Statement
On a break.
2016 / 2017:
Play concerts in Germany and Lithuania, release music videos.
2015: Stop Talking Album and baby break
On March 17th 2015 You’re Only Massive got a new member 😀
Over the next months we concentrated on taking care of the baby, playing a small number of concerts at Ladyfest Kassel, Antifa Neuruppin, etc.
Stop Talking is a ten track album, released in digital and CD format in February. The song “I Came Much Too Far” features rapper Cindy Wonderful from queer riot grrrl legends Scream Club and “I Do Everything” features saxophone from Dublin-based Polish musician Ewa Gigon. Cover art is by Finnish comic artist Henna Hoplin. Band photography is by Shai Levy, who also shot the music video for “It Will Work” on location at the band’s music practice space in Tacheles art centre in Berlin-Mitte, shortly before all artists were evicted.
2012 to 2014: Activism and Midi Grrrl EP
You’re Only Massive played concerts around Europe througout 2012 and 2013. They also became more involved in feminist and political activism. Maebh became a part of Ruby Tuesday e.V. and helped organise and band coach at the Ruby Tuesday Rock and Hip Hop Camp for Girls, Trans* and Inter Youth 2012, co-founded the Berlin-Irish Pro Choice Solidarity Group and directed the Listen Up! Festival 2013 – a two day music festival to change the rules (video documentation here). In 2014 You’re Only Massive started recording again and self-released the five track Midi Grrrl EP.
2009 to 2012: Cassette Releases, Exhibitions, Theatre, Audio Walking Tours
In 2011 You’re Only Massive released four cassette tapes of new material as the The Fourth Quarter Volume I to IV and recorded a 2FM session in Dublin, Ireland. Music video for “Out of Time” here.
Maebh and Dave started working with Hanin Elias and playing in her live band througout 2011 and 2012. They played around Europe (live performance clip here) and toured California with Violent Vickie.
Zum Schein a group art exhibition ran at Neurotitan Gallery Berlin during December 2010 and January 2011 and You’re Only Massive curated and participated, showing both published artwork and personal drawings.
In 2010 they were commissioned by The Model, Sligo to produce a 30 minute mp3 audio walking tour of Sligo in the west of Ireland, telling the hidden histories of bankers and caregivers.
Maebh created a musical interpretation of the role Cassandra in Off Plan, directed by Rachel West, which played at the Project Arts Centre in Dublin, premiering on February 11th 2010.
In 2009 they released the single “Under The Neon” as a 7″ and itunes download, touring in Ireland and Germany to support the record.
Move to Berlin
Shortly after the release of Dot Dash and the finance crisis in Ireland, You’re Only Massive moved to Berlin to learn new production skills, draw inspiration from the queerfeminist and electronic music scenes, learn the German language and gig in Europe.
Dot Dash 12″ record
2008 saw the recording and release of Dot Dash, a 12″ split record with Queen Kong. The critical and artistic success of this collaboration led David Murphy of Queen Kong to become a full member of You’re Only Massive, travelling to New York to present Disco-nnect at the Conflux Festival of Contemporary Pschogeography in Manhattan.
Band Founding and Disco-nnect
Maebh began uploading roughly recorded demos to myspace and hip hop forums under the moniker You’re Only Massive. This secured gigs and in 2007, she began performing all over Ireland with DJ Megadrive, aswell as orchestrating the performative walking tour of Dublin, Disco-nnect as part of the Dublin Fringe Festival, where it was nominated for the Jayne Snow Award for Risk Taking and Innovation.
You’re Only Massive’s music incorporates elements of hip hop to alt rock. electro and pop, eventually becoming entity of its own. Reviews of their debut record Dot Dash stated it was “jammed with creativity, incredible vocal performances, smart raps, and inventive beats, sounds and rhythms.”
The live sound of the duo is characterized by an incessant kick drum, a wash of electronic sounds, melodic synth playing and the vocals of both musicians, vocodered or raw, singing or rapping.
“The first desire is the desire to belong. Man is characterized by competition and carnage, yes. But also by generosity and empathy. It is very important that you realize you can do whatever you want. Though often barriers are constructed before our very eyes, we want to give you free reign to the impulses repressed by education, parenting and capitalism. Allow the barriers to fall. Step away from narcissism and allow your body to fall back into the outstretched hands of the crowd.”