jumping into new adventures on the other side of the world and launching a completely autobiographical album is what mags with the bourgeois name margrethe tang has achieved. we met up with the young musician, aged 25, at nørrebro, copenhagen to learn more about the promising danish electro pop artist, who is using music to understand herself and the world around her.
it hasn’t been straightforward for margrethe on her way of becoming mags. but the way she effortlessly enters the room in her tube top, relaxed blue jeans, and an oversized vintage blazer, it is easy to think otherwise. growing up in a small town in jutland, mags was only 17 years old when she decided to move across the world to central america.
“if it weren’t for the support from my family, i don’t think i would have dared to travel so far away for so long. i was quite young, far away from home, and all of a sudden i found myself having my first heartbreak in a jungle of costa rica. this was when i wrote my first unhappy love song”.
the years in costa rica gave her the courage and motivation to continue her adventure in the thriving city of berlin in the pursuit of making a music career.
”to be honest, i had been glamourising becoming an artist and living in berlin. the reality was that it was really cold, especially after two years in costa rica. i also had a long-distance relationship and it was just miserable. to clear my thoughts i started writing very honest, personal and unhappy love songs like it was my diary”.
adventurous as she is, mags decided to start over in her long-time dream city, new york. she passionately tells about her daily life in the big apple though it wasn’t always all smiles and happy days, but couchsurfing, living on oatmeal, and one-dollar pizza slices.
“i remember watching sex & the city and was like: »manhattan, here i come«.looking back, i was a bit naive and i didn’t think it all through. you’d find me sitting in the corner of guitar stores, playing, singing and just hoping that someone would enter the store and be like »you’re amazing«, but it just didn’t happen”.
despite her fear of stages, mags would also play at open mics, exposing herself again and again until her fear would show up physically.“try to imagine a young girl with a guitar, singing about her deepest feelings and suddenly blood is running from her nose. and that was before billie eilish was a thing. it wasn’t cool. it was just weird”.
after years abroad, it was about time to head home to denmark, this time copenhagen where her professional music career really took off. since her first ep launched in 2019, mags has been proclaimed as the new promising pop name. only one year after, she is ready with her debut album titled “mags”. an autobiographical album, almost like reading the personal diary of margrethe tang, merged with the uplifting, electronic sound she is known for.
“i think it’s cool to turn a very deep, insecure feeling into a song to make it more light, or danceable. then, i think of it in a completely different way and i feel like i have taken the control back. with music, i can choose exactly how i want to tackle the situation”.
she often finds that fans and new listeners recognize the same feelings. it’s relatable and that’s what makes her music relevant.
“the funny thing is that my songs are very personal to me and i think it’s very unique what i have been feeling, but in the end we have all gone through some of the same emotions. it’s crazy how universal feelings are”.
and with her melancholic, yet uplifting and danceable universe, she encourages us all to dance our fears and insecurities away.