languages languagesicone
site loader
site loader
May 22, 2024 Q+A with avant-garde artist Jeannel

Q+A with avant-garde artist Jeannel

We spent five minutes with multi-modal artist Jeannel (Jeanne Amiens), who shared a new single, ‘Blue’, and its equally breathtaking video on 03 May 2024 via Unfelt Recordings. The video premiered on the notable tastemaker NOTION. The song was produced by Jeannel herself and (Tory Lanez, Belly, Moses Yoofee Trio), mixed by, and mastered by 4x Grammy-nominated engineer Zino Mikorey (Hans Zimmer, Thom Yorke, Metronomy, Parcels, The Kooks, Fred Again). The Berlin-based songwriter and producer has garnered 1.5 million streams across platforms, earning praises from likes of Resident Advisor, Vice Mag, CLASH Mag, Earmilk, The Line of Best Fit, Kaltblut Mag and more, as well as landing placements on various Spotify playlists and earning spins on radio stations such as NTS Radio. Jeannel has graced the stages of Red Bull Music Festival, Clouds Hill Festival and Reeperbahn Festival NYC Edition, in addition to performances at art galleries and museums, and artist residencies (such as one in Havana, Cuba) abroad to boot. These are but a few of the host of achievements under her belt, and she’s showing no signs of slowing down. Jeannel’s music delicately dancing between the borders of alt-R&B, avant-pop, trip-hop, neo-classical and beyond, has been compared to feminine luminaries such as FKA Twigs, Solange, Lana del Rey, Sevdaliza and Charlotte Day Wilson.

Walk us through your creative process?
It’s always a bit different, but usually it starts with the music. I am always on the look for sounds that inspire me when I start working on a piece, I scroll through my plugins and go from there. Or it’s a chord progression on the piano, or a cello phrase, or just soundscapes that I catch somewhere. Then vocal melodies come up that I record on the phone, and the lyrics come in bits and pieces. Over the years I learned to let my subconscious guide me and let it provide bits and pieces of lyrics. From there the pieces unfold, really like a puzzle piece most of the time. 

Who are your biggest artistic influences?

I won’t stop naming Jeff Buckley, as he just got under my skin the first time I heard him. His rawness, his expression, his honesty, his darkness, the lyrics, his voice and play. He truly was one in a million and I find his music still so timeless and inspiring. Sevdaliza definitely is an inspiration as well. She’s a brilliant artist and I find her boldness very inspiring.

What would you like to work with if you weren’t a musician?
Definitely in the therapeutic field, which I am already doing. I have a deep urge to work with people. Archeology I’ve always found and still find very interesting as well. But if I needed to choose it would be the first named.

Tell us about the process of creating the stunning video for ‘Blue’.
It was a long process with many obstacles. I’ve been meaning to make a video for the song since quite a while, spoke with different directors and things always got in between. At last the stars aligned and I gathered an incredible team of creatives that committed to making this project happen against so many odds, mostly financially. I can say that it was the most draining but most rewarding project I’ve ever made, as I didn’t have fundings or a production company in my back. So all of that was on my own shoulders this time, from gathering the team, to financing the project, to making the music and doing a super vulnerable and strong performance on camera. It’s a CRAZY thing to do, making music videos with low budgets and I am so grateful for the team for sticking with me and being so generous and helpful throughout the process. 

From day 1 I had the vision for the video of telling a (my own) love story in its stages, from bliss to destruction and everything in between. I wrote the song for my ex partner during Covid when we were actually still together, and I knew I had to create this piece to somehow honour the relationship, to do something that I had control over meanwhile the relationship was crumbling uncontrollably. As it’s such a personal and vulnerable piece, my biggest concern was finding the right performance partner, with whom I’d feel comfortable enough and who would himself understand the project and could contribute his own emotionality, his own story, which luckily happened very easily. I made an Instagram post and Kelvin reached out. We had been following each other for a while and I already had him in the back of my head. We had a first phone call, met for a coffee and then started ‘rehearsing’, with my dear friend Marie, holding the space for us to explore and get to know each other. It was a super organic process, from first becoming acquainted with one another, losing inhibitions etc. It was important for me to be able to tell my own story, meanwhile giving Kelvin the space to tell his, so we could eventually merge them into a story of its own. It’s all improvised, bit by bit creating our language, images and tools to tell love’s stages. 

Then Lauren, the director, joined the rehearsal and translated our performance into video language. 

Last minute, the location we had initially counted on cancelled and I had to find a new one. It was so crazy stressful. But the stars aligned and the rest is history and I couldn’t be more content and touched by the piece we created.

What’s one piece of gear you can’t live without? What equipment are you using?
TC Helicon Voice live touch. 

If you could meet one performer/artist, living or passed, who would it be?
Definitely Jeff.

What does the future hold for you as an artist?

I am in the middle of finishing my debut album, which I am quite excited about. Besides I’m working on a collaboration with Âme, also very exciting, but cannot reveal too much about it.  I am planning a few collaborative projects which I’m very passionate about, more in the institutional field, galleries, museums etc.

Then hopefully playing a bunch of international shows in connection to the release of my album in 2025 and see where that takes me. But first and foremost finishing my album.

Follow Jeannel:


February 2, 2024 Q&A with the multifaceted Yung Saber

Q&A with the multifaceted Yung Saber

London-born Dancehall and Hip-hop artist, freelance A&R, model and actor Yung Saber has just released an infectiously feel-good new single, ‘Gucci Prada’, on January 26th, 2024. Boasting over 10 million streams across all platforms, Yung Saber stormed the UK Dancehall scene with his track ‘Tump & Kick’, which became an international hit and earned radio plays across the globe in 2021. He went on to do two remixes, the first one featuring Stylo G followed by an All-star remix featuring UK Dancehall trailblazers Big Zeeks, Shanti Force, The Rara, Doktor & Irah. Saber has performed at MADE Festival, Brighton Harbour Festival, Glastonbury, Notting Hill Carnival with Amazon, +44, and many other venues throughout the UK. He has appeared on several BBC radio shows such as Rampage, Seani B and BBC 1Xtra. In February 2023, he attended BBC Maida Vale Session with Seani B and performed his hit single ‘Karl Kani’ with a live band for BBC dancehall weekender. 

Influenced by the likes of Super Cat and Vybz Kartel, Yung Saber’s sound can be compared to J Hus, Govana, MoStack, Not3s, Krept & Konan and Yxng Bane.

Read our chat with him below.

Looking back, what were some of your earliest entries into music appreciation? And music production? 

I’ve grown up around sound system culture – my mum’s a DJ, she used to run pirate radio stations, my uncle was a sound man (one of the founders of Coxsone Sound), and my older brother Brakeman being a well-known MC in the late 90s and early 2000s (at that time with it being hard to become a household name). This is what I was surrounded by and was my inspo very early on to become an entertainer.

Tell us about your first live performance – what was it like?

My first live performance was at Burgess Park in Peckham in 2005/2006. I was 15 and all I remember was that I was nervous but at the same time having the time of my life finally doing what I love to do. 

What is London’s Dancehall scene like? Have you found it easy to build community through it?

When I entered the London dancehall scene it was a mess – no love, no unity, no support, there were certain gatekeepers but me and a few others were able to build a community in which talented individuals are now getting the right exposure that they deserve.

If you could paint a picture of your unique sound, what would it look like?

My sound is a combination of UK rap with dancehall.

Take us through your songwriting process. Is it spontaneous, or do you have rituals? 

I can’t tell you my process but everything is spontaneous and off the top of my dome, and I’m a heavy believer in prayer and God guides me through the process.

What do you personally consider to be the highlight of your artistic career beyond your music (as an actor, A&R or model) thus far? 

Finding fresh new talent and acting, one of my goals is to do more acting and to run a successful record label for young fresh talent. 

Do you have any non-musical hobbies? 

I enjoy cooking and gaming with my kids.

As an artist, it becomes apparent that there is a huge difference between the art and the industry. Is there anything about the music scene that you would personally change?

Yes, the way the females are treated the way they are sexualised and almost feel like they need to use their body just to get their foot in the door, obviously this isn’t every female’s experience but it is the vast majority.

What is the most memorable response you have had to your music?

Managing to create momentum around the viral hit song ‘Tump and Kick’ during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

If you could go back to the beginning of your career to give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it be?

Believe in yourself, have the right people around you, and don’t trust so easily.

Follow Yung Saber:
FacebookXSoundcloud TikTok Youtube InstagramSpotify

November 24, 2023 Interview with TTeo on his disco-soul homage, Loveexpress 77

Interview with TTeo on his disco-soul homage, Loveexpress 77

TTeo is the pseudonym of Matteo Capreoli – singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer with a rich musical heritage. In 1970, his father, Fernando Antonio Capreoli, left Salento for Germany, before forming the disco-funk-rock outfit Lovexpress. They toured Norway, Sweden, and Denmark from 1974 to 1979. Now, in 2023, Matteo pays soulful homage to his father’s funk outfit, with the help of some old tapes – the bygone band’s only known recordings. Signed to Sonar Kollektiv in 2020, TTeo’s compositions are high energy and full of heart. Read our interview and listen to Loveexpress 77 below:

Walk through your creative process for us.

Something in my mind overcomes me. It’s difficult to explain. And it’s always different, never the same.

What has been the most defining moment of your musical career?

10 years ago I was the musical director for a festival in Hamburg called Soul im Park. Where I coordinated one band for a lot of artists and their songs for the whole day. It was a big success and extremely beautiful. After that night I realized that I love collaborating with other artists a lot. From then on I started to concentrate more and more on productions/composition for and with other artists.

What equipment or software did you enjoy writing with the most?

I use Logic. And mostly I love to have just a good upright piano.

What’s your performance setup looking like? Are there any differences between your live and studio kits?

Extremely different. My studio is full of instruments. Drums, percussions, pianos, synthesizers, guitars, mics and so on. My live setup is stripped down to a Maschine from drums and samples, a little Roland J6 synth, one mic, and a MIDI twister for effects. All runs through Ableton.

Give us a brief dive into the inspiration for the EP’s samples and themes.

My samples for the album LOVEXPRESS77 are recordings of my dad’s band Loveexpress from the 70s. They played dance music in clubs and recorded some of their live sets on tape. That’s where the samples and the inspiration for the album come from.

What is your favorite sample from your dad’s old Lovexpress tapes?

Two of them, are from the song ‘Follow Me’, and ‘Lovecircus’. Especially in ‘Lovecircus’, the sample was a song that came out through some jams during their concerts, my dad said. And the vocals are sung by the bass player Leo in that case, in an invented language. Culturally they were super mixed as a band. 

How did you find the collaborators who appear on the LP?

Owen Ross is a good friend and an incredible musician. We just met for a hang out in the Studio and then it happened that we worked together on ‘Samba

Same with Kristine Bogan. I met her through Concord Publishing. It was our 2nd time in the studio together and we put her love and lyrics into the ‘Follow Me’ chorus.

What’s your favorite way to pass the time when you aren’t playing, or listening to funky bops?

I love nature a lot. Living at the beach in Salento I spend a lot of time outside, doing sports, climbing, cooking, and gardening. But to be honest, most of the time I do music.

What’s next for TTeo? Any notable events or plans for collaborations coming up?

I did some beautiful remixes for some artists and stayed in the Lovexpress-Soundworld, so there might be something coming next. On the 1st of December, I am playing a show in Berlin at Stranger Funk before I leave for Costa Rica, for a live set in the jungle.

Watch the fresh new video for ‘Follow Me’:

Follow TTeo:

Follow Sonar Kollectiv:

October 13, 2023 Interview with Irish indie rockers The Burma

Interview with Irish indie rockers The Burma

The Burma have returned with a stunning full length album titled Crazy Dreams & Cruel Realities, released on the 6th of October 2023 via their own label The Burma Music Group. Having received support from The Rolling Stone India, CLASH Magazine, NOTION Magazine, Hot Press, Atwood Magazine, and Off, the trio has also earned spins on RTÉ 2FM with Dan Hegarty as well as RTÉ Radio 1. Their single ‘Holiday’ has already premiered and received support from EARMILK, and the boys have earned support slots for artists such as The Academic and The Strypes, while simultaneously gaining extensive airplay across Ireland, the UK, and the USA. Read our interview with their drummer Cian Doherty below.

Walk us through your creative process?

The songs always starts with either Peter (guitar) or Tony (vocals). One of them will come up with the initial idea and send some sort of a demo to the rest of us and it goes from there. Sometimes the demos can be full arrangements of a song, and other times they can be just a voice note with chords and a melody or one single instrument part, it varies. We do the majority of our work on our own at home, recording and writing parts etc. and then we send in a recording of it into our group chat and let the others sit with it for a while. We make adjustments from there. We wouldn’t really be the type of band to jam for hours in practice. There’s usually a plan for each rehearsal and we go in and get it done with parts that have been worked on and written at home.

Who are your biggest artistic influences?

The Smiths, Tame Impala, The Strokes and The Weekend.

What instruments do you play?

Tony O Donovan is the singer, Peter Piggott is the guitar player and Cian Doherty is our drummer.

What would you like to work with if you weren’t a musician?

I (Cian) would be working in the business side of the music industry as either an artist manager or tour manager.

Whats one piece of gear you can’t live without? What equipment are you using?

The Roland SPD-SX. We use some tracks for our live shows for extra synths and processed vocals etc. so we have the whole show built around the use of the SPD-SX. I am in control of the tracks from the drums so there’s a lot that goes on surrounding that and making sure it runs smoothly. Peter records each track himself and looks after the audio for each one and makes sure it’s show ready. We’re always updating and trying to improve them.

Tell us something unrelated to music. What are your hobbies?

We’re pretty boring. Music pretty much dominates our life.

If you could meet one performer/artist who would it be?


What does the future hold for you as an artist?

A life making a living from our music, hopefully.

Follow The Burma:

WebsiteFacebook XSoundcloud YoutubeInstagramSpotifyTikTok