Don’t get Lauren Mayberry started on the best-laid plans of mice and men. The Scottish lass had huge career aspirations in college, aiming for a degree in law. But she soon realized the legal profession was not her cup of tea, so she switched to a masters in multimedia journalism, hoping for documentary work. Instead, her band Blue Sky Archives caught the ear of Glaswegian producer-keyboardist Iain Cook, who recruited her for his fledgling electronic project Chvrches. The trio wound up breaking big with its 2013 debut “The Bones of What You Believe” and now returns with an equally-ethereal followup, “Every Open Eye.” “So maybe I lucked out with the whole band thing,” she says.
Post-graduation, you actually did make it into broadcasting, right?
I was trying to make a segue into documentary film, but I didn’t quite make it — I was doing production assistant jobs for companies when Chvrches started up. But I was trying hard to make the transition.
Where were you employed?
I was working for a small, independent production company in Scotland, so we did a lot of adverts. And I was a production runner for the BBC, so they had me doing loads of things. You have to go and work on specific shoots, so I had to keep being like, “No, I can’t work on that day. I can’t work on that day, either.” And then eventually I just understood that, “I’m going to have to quit, because I’m never here to do this job.”
What were some of your oddest assignments?
There are just some weird things you get asked to do as a production runner. Like filming at 3 in the morning on a Thursday, and being asked to find sushi for a director — with no sushi in the neighborhood in the daytime, let alone at 3 in the morning. So it was a learning curve. And it definitely taught me to be nice to every person you meet on a production, from top to bottom, because I worked on some shoots where people were not very nice or respectful.
But you returned to journalism two years ago, when you wrote a scathing op-ed for The Guardian about sexist and misogynist Internet trolls that had been attacking you online.
Yeah. And I guess at the time, it was probably borne out of a lot of frustration, and being very tired of having to do our job in that way. And now, although that stuff still happens to us, I think that having an honest reaction to it has informed the ethos of the community that’s directly around the band. So I don’t regret it. I feel like it was a good choice.
IF YOU GO
When: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 18, Bridge Stage
TREASURE ISLAND MUSIC FESTIVAL
Where: Treasure Island (free shuttle runs from Bill Graham Civic, 99 Grove St., S.F.)
When: Noon to 11 p.m. Oct. 17-18
Tickets: $95 to $315
Saturday, Oct. 17: FKA Twigs at 7:45 p.m., Deadmau5 at 9:25 p.m. on Bridge Stage; Hudson Mohawke at 7 p.m., Big Grams (Big Boi + Phantogram) at 8:35 p.m. on Tunnel Stage
Sunday, Oct. 18: Chvrches at 7:30 p.m., The National at 9:20 p.m. (Bridge); Deerhunter at 6:40 p.m., Panda Bear at 8:30 p.m. (Tunnel)