Victoria Hesketh, aka Blackpool pop diva Little Boots, is delighted – and a little relieved – at the reaction to her new album.
The 29-year-old was under big pressure to make sure Nocturnes – released in May and the follow-up to top five 2009 debut Hands – was warmly received by the critics.
A damning verdict from the music press and, with the record industry in a precarious way these days, she might have had a problem.
But Hesketh needn’t have worried. Her new material won widespread praise and was labelled ‘pop album of the year’ by The Guardian.
Back in Poulton for a few days to see her family before heading to play at a festival in Portugal, Hesketh – about to release Satellite as the second single from the new album – told The Diary she is “really pleased” with the reaction.
“There was pressure, and even more so because I took a long time to bring the album out – having a big gap between the first and second album had already put me in a difficult position,” she said.
“The most important thing was for it to get reviewed well because if it had been slated it would have made it difficult to keep touring.
“But because we had some great reviews that meant we kept getting gig bookings and being able to tour.
“I knew in my heart the proper fans would love the second album even though they’ve had to wait, but you are always nervous until you find out that, yes, people actually do like it.”
Hesketh now lives in London but isn’t the kind of artist to chase celebrity. She shuns the majority of showbiz parties because for her it’s about being known for the music, not “falling out of a nightclub”.
That kind of commonsense and determination is echoed in her songs. She isn’t chasing quick sales or trying to be commercial – she wants a lengthy career and to be respected for the music she produces.
“I was delighted my first record went top five, it was incredible. But you can get known as one-hit wonder and it can be quite hard to break past that,” she said.
“That’s why it was really important for me with this record to make an album that showed I was more than a one-trick pony and I am going to keep making albums that are musical and have some emotion and some depth in there.
“We got tonnes of four out of five reviews and for The Guardian to call it pop album of the year was really great.
“It actually got better reviews than the first album and we are spending this year touring all over the world.”
New track Satellite comes out at the start of next month, complete with a competition which will interest budding DJs.
Hesketh has teamed up with Soundcloud and invited fans to make their own remix version of the track. She will personally pick the winner, whose track will feature on the official remix of Satellite (by producer Lindstrom) on September 10.
“I know there are quite a few good aspiring DJs in Blackpool so this is a good chance for someone,” Hesketh said.
The runner-up prize is pretty good too – a brand new Traktor Z1, all-in-one mixer and controller that can be hooked up to iPad or iPhone for a fully-functional Traktor DJ rig. Head to https://soundcloud.com/littleboots/sets/satellite-stems-remix/s-tOinz for details of how to enter.