Muna (band)

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Muna
Genres
Years active2013–present
Labels
Associated acts
Websitewhereismuna.com
Members
  • Katie Gavin
  • Josette Maskin
  • Naomi McPherson

Muna (stylized as MUNA) (/ˈmnə/ MOON[1]) is an American electronic pop band consisting of Katie Gavin, Josette Maskin, and Naomi McPherson.

History[edit]

Based in Los Angeles, the trio met in college at the University of Southern California and began working together in 2013 with Maskin and McPherson playing together on guitars and Gavin adding synth bass and vocals. Gavin and Maskin were music majors, while McPherson double-majored in Narrative Studies and American Studies & Ethnicity.[2] The two guitarists, Maskin and McPherson, had been used to playing ska and progressive rock, but settled on a different sound when their initial collaboration with singer Gavin resulted in a pop song.[3]

Beginning their collaboration in an experimental mode, they evolved towards hooky electronic pop. In the summer of 2014, they self-released their debut EP, More Perfect, on Bandcamp and SoundCloud. Its success led to their signing by RCA Records in the US and Columbia Records in the UK. RCA released their self-produced debut major label EP, Loudspeaker, in May 2016. Their debut full-length album, About U, was released on February 3, 2017.

All three members identify as queer[3] and McPherson is non-binary.[4] Initially wary of being pigeonholed as a "queer band," they later came to embrace the opportunity to use their musical notoriety to help inspire younger people to be comfortable with their identities. Their songs frequently address issues of sexuality and gender. They describe one early song, "So Special", as "an anthem for the slut-shamed girls of the world who have to assert their own value."[3] According to McPherson, "It would have meant a lot to me when I was, say, 12, to know of someone in a band and think they were cool and know they were out."[2] McPherson added, "I am out and I feel safe being out because the three of us are a little army for one another. I don't feel afraid to be myself. That makes me proud to be queer. That's the whole point of why we do this. We want a safe haven."[5]

Dutch DJ/producer Tiësto remixed "Winterbreak" in May 2016.[6] Muna played Lollapalooza 2016 in Chicago in July 2016,[7] toured America with Grouplove in the fall of 2016, and made their late-night network television debut on November 7, 2016 on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.[8] On June 6, 2017, it was announced via Twitter that the band would be the opening act on the North American and European tour dates for Harry Styles. In 2017, their song "I Know a Place" was featured in The Carmilla Movie, following the original web series based on Sheridan Le Fanu's novella of the same name. In 2018, Muna was featured playing "I Know a Place" live in the Netflix movie, Alex Strangelove, which chronicles the sexual awakening of its teen protagonist, Alex Truelove.

In 2018, the band began work on their second full-length record. In June 2019, the band announced their second album, Saves the World, which was released on September 6, 2019. The album was preceded by its lead single, "Number One Fan", followed by the singles "Who" and "Stayaway". Following their London shows at the Village Underground,[9] it was announced that Muna would be returning to the UK for their Saves the World Tour in December 2019.

In May 2021, it was announced that the band signed with Phoebe Bridgers' record label Saddest Factory, which operates in partnership with Secretly Group's Dead Oceans.[10]

On Sept, 7, 2021 the band released their single "Silk Chiffon" ft Phoebe Bridgers, their first since signing to Saddest Factory. With Rolling Stone calling it an "Buoyant track with an uncharacteristically bright declaration of Queer Love."[11]

Awards and honors[edit]

In June 2020, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the first LGBTQ Pride parade, Queerty named them among the fifty heroes “leading the nation toward equality, acceptance, and dignity for all people”.[12][13]

Discography[edit]

MUNA discography
Studio albums2
EPs5
Singles11

Studio albums[edit]

List of studio albums, with selected information
Title Details Peak chart positions
US
Heat

[14]
About U 7
Saves the World
  • Released: September 6, 2019
  • Label: RCA
  • Formats: LP, digital download, streaming
7

Extended plays[edit]

Title Details
More Perfect
Loudspeaker
  • Released: May 6, 2016
  • Label: RCA
  • Formats: CD, digital download, streaming
Spotify Sessions
  • Released: October 14, 2016
  • Label: RCA
  • Formats: Streaming
About U: One Year On
  • Released: March 9, 2018
  • Label: RCA
  • Formats: Digital download, streaming
Spotify Singles
  • Released: November 14, 2019
  • Label: RCA
  • Formats: Streaming

Singles[edit]

Title Year Peak chart positions Album
US
AAA

[15]
US
Adult
Pop

[16]
US
Alt

[17]
US
Rock

[18]
"Winterbreak" 2016 31 About U
"Loudspeaker"
"I Know a Place" 39
"Crying on the Bathroom Floor" 2017
"If U Love Me Now"
"In My Way" Non-album single
"Number One Fan" 2019 Saves the World
"Who"
"Stayaway"
"Taken"
"Bodies"
(with The Knocks)
2020 Non-album single
"Silk Chiffon"
(featuring Phoebe Bridgers)
2021 37 35 45 TBA

Remixes[edit]

Title Year Artist
"Company" 2016 Tinashe
"Good Morning" 2017 Grouplove
"Bon Appétit" Katy Perry
"Bite" 2018 Fickle Friends
"Peach" Broods
"Sunflower" 2020 Dizzy
"With Myself" Winona Oak
"Visitor" Of Monsters and Men
"Set It Free" Now, Now
"Man's World" Marina
"Ablaze" Alanis Morissette
"Girls Like Us" 2021 Zoe Wees
"Empathy" Lauren Aquilina
"Seeing Things" Charlie Hicks

Guest appearances[edit]

Title Year Other Artist(s) Album
"Relief Next to Me" 2017 Tegan and Sara Tegan and Sara Present the Con X: Covers
"Pipes of Peace" N/A Holidays Rule (Vol. 2)
"Judas Kiss" 2020 Lawrence Rothman The Turning (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
"Nihilist" N/A The Turning (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Tours[edit]

Headlining[edit]

  • Saves the World Tour (2019)

Supporting[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "4 Things About MUNA You Should Know!". Billboard. August 13, 2019. Retrieved March 22, 2021 – via YouTube.
  2. ^ a b Avery Stone, "MUNA On Their Own Terms: "If We're Lucky Enough to Have a Platform, We Should Use That to Help People"", Noisey, May 10, 2016
  3. ^ a b c Mark Savage, "Muna interview: Defiant pop from LA rising stars", BBC, September 28, 2016
  4. ^ "https://twitter.com/flurtcobain/status/965453829742514176". Twitter. Retrieved April 10, 2021. External link in |title= (help)
  5. ^ Ian David Monroe, "MUNA Are Pioneering a New Identity in Pop Music", V Magazine, November 4, 2016
  6. ^ "Muna – Winterbreak (Tiësto's Deep House Mix)", Tiëstosblog, retrieved November 18, 2016
  7. ^ "retrieved November 21, 2016
  8. ^ "Watch MUNA Make Their Late-Night TV Debut With "Loudspeaker" On Jimmy Fallon", Stereogum, November 8, 2016 (retrieved November 21, 2016)
  9. ^ "Rᴀᴄʜ ✿ on Instagram: "muna were so good last night, even mum enjoyed the show! #concert #muna #music"". Instagram.
  10. ^ "MUNA sign to Phoebe Bridgers' label Saddest Factory Records". NME. May 19, 2021. Retrieved May 19, 2021.
  11. ^ Zemler, Emily (November 9, 2021). "Phoebe Bridgers Takes Muna to Prom With 'Silk Chiffon' on 'Corden'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  12. ^ "Queerty Pride50 2020 Honorees". Queerty. Retrieved June 30, 2020.
  13. ^ Tracer, Daniel (July 15, 2020). "These musicians became queer role models young fans need, and they're changing the world for good". Queerty. Retrieved August 2, 2020.
  14. ^ "MUNA Chart History: Heatseekers Albums". Billboard. Retrieved July 7, 2021.
  15. ^ "MUNA Chart History (Triple A Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved November 10, 2021.
  16. ^ "MUNA Chart History (Adult Top 40 Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved July 7, 2021.
  17. ^ "MUNA Chart History (Alternative Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved October 6, 2021.
  18. ^ "MUNA Chart History (Hot Rock & Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved July 7, 2021.

External links[edit]