Internet Sensation and Machine Gun Kelly Live guitarist Sophie Lloyd has released her new single “Do Or Die”. Check it out below along with our interview with Lloyd.
‘Do Or Die’ is the first ‘major’ release from guitarist Sophie Lloyd and is taken from her Slash-inspired debut album ‘Imposter Syndrome’.
Lloyd first rose to YouTube fame with a series of guitar covers of rock and pop classics, previously releasing the instrumental EP ‘Delusions’ in 2018.
“I’m definitely nervous about releasing this new track, but I’m also really excited,” she told NME.
‘Do Or Die’ is inspired by Iron Maiden and features vocals from Nathan James from the rock band Inglorious. “It’s fucking power. The song also has some really cool riffs and a great guitar solo. It’s a great song,” continued Lloyd.
Speaking about what to expect from his debut album “Imposter Syndrome,” which is due out next year, Lloyd revealed: “The whole record is inspired by Slash’s self-titled solo album, which he’s collaborated on with various people from different areas of music. I also worked with a lot of different artists for my record.”
While Guns N’ Roses’ iconic album featured the likes of Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas, Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl and Chris Cornell of Soundgarden,
Lloyd’s lists Nathan James alongside Atreyu frontman Brandon Saller, Trivium’s Matt Heafy and Steel Panther’s Michael Star, as well as “some newer artists who have exploded onto TikTok”.
The rest is a surprise, though Lloyd has snagged a dream collaboration with someone on his wish list.
“The album touches on many different genres, but all within the realm of rock,” said Lloyd. “There’s a high-energy pop-punk song, some heavy metal stuff, and some country rock. It doesn’t all come in a box, which I’m excited about. It’s all music that I listened to growing up. It was written this album is very much for my 15 year old self, who was just in her room, listening to music.
Discussing why now for a debut album, Lloyd said: “Writing music has always been my first love, although most people know me from YouTube stuff. I feel the time is right to settle down and I’m what I want to do. “.
“I’ve always been pretty open about my struggles with performance anxiety and imposter syndrome,” continued Lloyd, explaining the album’s title. “I definitely didn’t follow the usual path that most musicians follow. I uploaded videos to the internet instead of playing live in pubs and I always felt because of that, I wasn’t good enough. It started I was feeling anxious and it held me back. This album is my job to overcome those things.”
Working on it remotely during the COVID pandemic with several different collaborators, Lloyd discovered that other artists were having similar struggles. “It’s such a common thing in the rock scene, but it’s never talked about,” he said. “It’s good to try to educate people.”
Lloyd also overcame his fears about his own abilities by touring with Machine Gun Kelly as part of his live band for their massive “Mainstream Sellout” world tour.
“It was a great trip,” he said. “There are always things to do, but when I was playing those big venues I noticed that this is where I belong. I feel very confident in myself and in my music.”
He continued: “MGK literally messaged me on Instagram one day after watching some of my videos. We Facetimed, we seemed to hit it off and before I knew it I had my visa and I was flying from London to Los Angeles to rehearse.”
She was “completely new to the touring world” so she was worried about saying yes. “It felt like something I had to create for myself,” she explained. “It was also an opportunity to show everyone else that I’m not just a social media guitar player.”
According to Lloyd, he is “over” people dismissing his ability as a musician. “If people want to think I’m just a bedroom guitarist or whatever, that’s their problem,” she said.
Lloyd added, “Touring with Machine Gun Kelly was amazing. It was like one big family, and I felt very comfortable and safe from the start. I also love how he uses his music to tell a story and convey a message.”
Playing stadiums also changed Lloyd’s ambitions. “I’ve always said I didn’t want to be a touring musician because I’m a homebody,” the musician admitted, “but to see people have those experiences with the music you play, instead of seeing numbers on a screen, it’s unbelievable.”.
“Now I definitely want to tour my album next year. I’m excited to discover the real world a little more and not just be on the screen. I want to encourage more people to pick up the guitar, especially women. I want to show people that rock music is great.”
Lloyd has been playing rock music for 17 years, which he considers “so powerful, because it shows all the emotions.” The guitarist, who called the rock community “so beautiful and so supportive”, said she appreciated the support she received from her online video performances.
“From the moment I started on YouTube, I’ve really inspired my audience,” he said. “The positivity of love is far more important.”
Lloyd added: “There were times when I hated covering certain songs, but you have to learn how to make yourself happy. If you do things for other people, you’re not going to be motivated and you’re not going to be happy .”.
“People really connect with authenticity, so the more genuine you are, the better. In everything I do, I try to be as open, honest and vulnerable as possible.”
‘Do Or Die’ by Sophie Lloyd is out now. His first album “Imposter Syndrome” will be released in 2023.