Despite growing up in a predominantly folk-inspired home in a small suburb of Melbourne, Martha Brown, more popularly known as Banoffee, has an extraordinarily mutant pop sound. Her parents consistently enjoyed the likes of Joni Mitchell and James Brown, but young Banoffee had a secret passion for R&B stars like Ne-Yo and Ashanti.
In 2010, Brown took her first step forward in the music industry with her sister Hazel and friend Kishore Ryan in a local, three-piece pop act called Otouto. During this period, she honed in on perfecting her keyboard-playing and her interest in organ-based keyboards. After Otouto's first (and only) release, "Pip," the group decided to part ways and Brown started her solo project, Banoffee.
Her first single "Ninja" was released in 2013. The dreamy song served as Banoffee's gateway into the ever-evolving realm of pop. The following year she released her debut self-titled EP. The five tracks are full of simple synths, sharp hooks, and catchy beats. In 2015, she released her sophomore EP, Do I Make You Nervous?, which beautifully showcased her personal and musical growth.
Her saucy tune, "With Her," makes you recall that time when you were in love with a boy who made you a little too comfortable and ultimately revealed he had a girlfriend the whole time. Because we've all been there, right? There's nothing more relatable than the verse.
"And I never felt like such a pet
And I followed every step
My hand was yours to hold
How silly now I know, how silly now I know
To think we were alone"
Banoffee is incredible at turning heartbreaking events into danceable bops. The other four songs on Do I Make You Nervous? revolve around themes of abusive relationships, self-doubt, and letting go.
Once she relocated to Los Angeles, Banoffee found herself in the same crowd of creatives as Charli XCX. Fast forward to 2018 when Charli invited Banoffee to join her on Taylor Swift's worldwide "Reputation Tour." The gargantuan stadium tour spanned from May to November and included over 50 shows between North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. As a queer artist, Banoffee thrived, feeling embrace and support from the LGBTQ+ community that populated Charli's shows.
In the midst of the tour, Banoffee released "Muscle Memory," her darkest single to date. The well-timed trap snares provide a sharp foundation for her lustful lyrics and pronounced reverb. Her subsequent releases, 2018's "Bubbles" and "Shut You Up," furthered her evolving, complex production. Listeners can hear how Banoffee has grown as a producer, as the vocals in these singles are more discernible while also remaining multifaceted.
Since touring with Charli XCX, Banoffee has remained on the rising pop radar, most notably opening for King Princess on her twenty-show sold-out tour across America. She also opened for Empress Of on her European tour in March and released a single with her titled "Tennis Fan" earlier this year. The song is yet another seed in Banoffee's growing garden of hits.
The beauty of Banoffee's sound is that it is constantly evolving and growing. None of her singles are indicative of what she'll release next. Her debut album, Look At Us Now Dad will be released in February of 2020. There's no telling what kind of electro-pop beats she'll plant in our heads next, but I'm sure they'll blossom into masterpieces.