PUBLISHED IN ISSUE 18
Creative Direction & Interview by Jessica Canje
Photos by Bernice Mulenga
Styling by Sharkkana Pryce
Hair + Makeup: Mata Labs
Dearly beloved Editorial Magazine readers, we would like to introduce you to Klein. But how? The South London singer and producer is difficult to place because she encompasses such a whirlwind of talents. She dabbles in directing, acting, and dance. Recently, she scored, directed, and wrote a fantasy musical entitled Care, set in a care home, which sold out all three shows at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. But if you already know her name, it is most likely you know her music. In her acclaimed 2017 debut under Hyperdub, the Tommy EP, she welcomed us into an impressionistic world with intricate samples and contagious melodies. Klein’s effortless originality is a pleasure to witness in the current culture of passing trends and vapid hype.
Can you tell me about the London music scene and your place in it?
For a few years, none of my friends were interested in or making music. The more I’ve played shows away, the more I’ve made friends that make music in the same realm. One thing I noticed with the London music scene is that there aren’t many venues. For some venues, you need so-and-so many followers/ likes, and in that case it would be hard to get your foot in the door as an artist trying to break through.
What is your ideal setting for recording music?
I love recording on my phone. I’m very interested in sampling myself. I don’t sample from people other than myself, so I use my phone to get random bits that in a few months or weeks I can look back at and take a sample. My ideal setting for recording is somewhere cozy. Whenever people say studio I get scared, it’s so robotic. Someone’s house where I can be snuggled up is my ideal setting.
Who are some artists you admire?
Artists I admire are people like Chino Amobi, Embaci, and Yves Tumor. I feel like they’re pushing music forward. I also love Moor Mother, she is absolutely incredible. I was watching her live the other day and thought to myself, “She’s the Alice Coltrane of this generation.”
I know you have other interests, including directing/ writing/acting. Tell me how these other art forms differ from making music.
I direct pretty much all of my videos myself, or edit them or film them.
When I was younger I was always interested in making films, and I used music as an excuse for doing that, for creating the films I’d want to see. When it came to making the musical, it was essentially an excuse for me to test out my acting chops and choreography/dance, because that was something I did for a few years. Basically, all this is a ploy to win an Oscar.
Do you have a message you want to convey through your art?
I definitely don’t have a message I want to convey, but I have themes of sisterhood, brotherhood, vulnerability, and happiness that intertwine in my work. I’m not that artist that has a general message to give people. But if people can take bits out of my stuff: don’t take yourself too seriously, be 100% honest with yourself when creating art, and never shy away from the cringey parts of your childhood.
More from Contributor Jessica Canje HERE.
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