Moxi is a husband/wife indie pop duo from Los Angeles featuring the dreamy, introspective vocals of Anna Toy overlaid on the cinematic musical landscape crafted by Andy Toy.
Drawing on elements of modern pop and 80's cinema, Moxi sets Anna's distinct vocals against a backdrop of dark textures, moody guitar sonics and memorable dream-pop melodies.
Moxi's latest single "Hush", is an abstract and emotional exploration of the feeling of pain. Hush's minimalist production highlights Anna's vocoded lyrics pondering mental health and the collective human experience, instantly drawing you in through a dreamy, emotive vortex of sound. Produced and co-written with longtime collaborator and Emmy-award winner Bobby Hartry, and mixed by Radiohead & U2 collaborator Bryan Cook, "Hush" is currently available worldwide.
Question: How would you describe your music?
Anna Toy : Ambient dreampop. I think our music is unique, emotive and honest.
Question: Can you tell us about your new song Hush?
Anna Toy : I wrote Hush a few years ago on my bedroom floor just me and my vocoder (a little machine that distorts my voice). I was in the middle of a depression and the song just spilled out of me. I brought the song to Andy who transformed it into what it is now. I love this song because it feels so true to who I am as an artist. It's raw, emotional and stays minimalist while still capturing our sound as a band. The song is about pain; feeling it all, being here in the emotions and letting them come in and out. Pain can make you so present. The song is about feeling like you are losing your mind which I feel on a regular basis if I'm being honest. While we wrote the song before COVID-19, I think the lyrics and message are very relatable for the time we are in and I hope people can relate to the song or at least escape for a minute while listening.
Question: Is there a particular message you hope listeners take from your music?
Anna Toy : Empowerment.
Question: Which is your favourite song to perform live and why?
Anna Toy : Gosh I have several. I love playing "Terrible Disguise", I get to trigger samples and distort my voice, the song just feels really fun live. I also love playing "Wolves"- that song is so empowering to me. "Figures bathed in light" is probably my favourite though because people usually know the lyrics and that song is such a banger.
Question: If you could have anyone, in the world, attend a show, who would it be?
Anna Toy : Karen and Georgia from My favorite Murder or Lizzo!
Question: What is the story behind the band name?
Anna Toy : Moxi means courage and determination. We spent weeks trying to come up with a name for our band. I don't know if I fully knew it when we started Moxi 7 years ago but the name completely captures who we are and what we are trying to do. Being an indie artist takes a lot of guts, a lot of determination, and it's not for the faint of heart. We've been grinding and hustling for 7 years and we don't plan to stop anytime soon. I love the art we get to create and I'm so proud of our Moxi universe.
Question: Who writes your music?
Anna Toy : Andy and I do the majority of the writing. We take most of our songs to our good friend Bobby Hartry who helps with the writing and to put finishing touches on them and then also co-produces the songs with us. We've done a fair amount of cowriting which is super fun, but I enjoy writing just the two of us the most. I have such a specific vision for what I want Moxi songs to be so I really enjoy writing with Andy- he gets me in a way that no other human does plus it's easy to be vulnerable with him which is a key part to good songwriting.
Question: What or who was your inspiration to go into the music industry?
Anna Toy : I'm a 90's baby so I grew up listening to Shania Twain, Dixie Chicks, Brittney Spears, Destiny's Child, TLC. All bad ass women. I remember lip syncing to Shania Twain in my room and dreaming about how cool it would be to have my own music videos one day. I think I didn't actually realize it was something that could happen for me until my voice coach in high school introduced me to guitar and songwriting. I wrote my first song when I was 14 and it was intoxicating. I loved it. I'd always been a very twisty and emotional kid so songwriting became my outlet, and I've never stopped.
Question: If you could collaborate with another artist, who would it be?
Anna Toy : Disclosure, Bon Iver, or Sofi Tukker.
Question: What is the biggest challenge you have faced along the way to your musical success?
Anna Toy : Probably keeping my head straight and not letting myself quit or be discouraged. In this business you hear 50 no's for every yes. It's hard. I'm an artist and I'm extremely sensitive, I'm an empath. My art is really important to me and it can be really hard to keep my head up sometimes. But, I'm a fighter and I haven't given up and I'm so grateful for that. I've also put SO much work into my own personal healing and it really wasn't until I did that that I started seeing real success. I think we have to be at peace with ourselves before we can accomplish greatness. I once had an acquaintance tell me that I'd never get anywhere because I didn't want to put the work in. I'm thinking I've proved him wrong.
Question: What's a typical day like?
Anna Toy : I'm a morning person so I'm usually up rather early. I exercise 5-6 days a week for my mental health. I usually run and do a mixture of body weight exercises. I spend a good 30 minutes each morning journaling and reading, sometimes I add meditation in, I've found that keeping this sacred routine really helps keep me focused and grounded. The days I skip this I really notice it. I'll usually work through the afternoon in short bursts, but I need a lot of breaks. We just moved to a house in Los Angeles that has a pool and I've been spending a lot of my quarantine there. A typical evening consists of making dinner and spending time with Andy- sometimes we feel inspired at night and will write/record in our home studio. I've been trying to fill my days with beauty, things that inspire me and fill me up.
Question: What has been your favourite part of becoming a music artist?
Anna Toy : The freedom that comes with it. I've never felt normal or like I fit in and for a long time I resented that but it's what I love most about myself now and its honestly what makes me the artist I am. With my writing and art I'm able to take all the weird thoughts and ideas in my brain and make them into something beautiful and hopefully meaningful. I feel like I've been able to peel off layers of myself that society and childhood trauma put onto me which were holding me back for years. The initial plunge into my true musical artistry was scary af but now that I'm in it I find it so incredibly freeing. Plus I think it's such a ground-breaking time right now for female artists. We've broken through the "box" we were put in for so long and we are here to take over.
Question: What's next, for you guys?
Anna Toy : Lots of new music coming in 2020. We have some Instagram live stream "shows" coming up that will be fun. Hopefully we'll be able to tour in the fall or early next year.
Question: Can you share your socials? (links please)
Anna Toy : Instagram
Interview by Gwen van Montfort