INTERVIEW: White Ring

Cult followers of the “witch house” movement will be familiar with industrial outfit WHITE RING, who are set to release their new album Gate Of Grief via Rocket Girl Records on July 27th. After an eight year hiatus, the band have returned and are ready to bewitch their fans with more of their corrosive sounds. We caught WHITE RING’s free show at The Shacklewell Arms back in May, and were burning to ask the following questions which Adina & Bryan kindly answered…

 

You recently played a free gig at The Shacklewell Arms. Did you enjoy the show? What did you get up to whilst you were in London – aside from supporting God Is An Astronaut?
We had a great time playing shows again. We were really busy doing press stuff between shows. We didn’t do much.

There are three of you involved in White Ring, but there’s currently only two of you performing on stage. Your stage presence is pretty intense – do you have any pre-gig rituals that help you prepare for your set?
We usually do some meditation, stretch and pray to our ancestors for good luck, very important.

Your band has a cult status – you formed via Myspace and helped to develop the “witch house” movement, which dedicated fans keep track of online. Do you think the internet is crucial nowadays when it comes to forming a band, nurturing a scene, and sharing your music?
It’s definitely a blessing not having to be physically connected to any particular city’s music scene, but the pendulum also swings the other way too, and can make some people really locked in on what others are doing, and I think it’s making them lonely.

Your new album, Gate Of Grief, is due out on July 27th. As the name suggests, it probes at difficult and uncomfortable territory. What are you most proud of about this record?
I’m proud that it’s done and that we are all still alive.

Do you have a favourite track? If so, why?
I really do love how this album functions more like the albums I grew up listening to – where track selection and placement are kept in mind. If I had to pick one it would probably ‘Do U Love Me 2?’ just because I don’t remember writing it. I woke up after crashing from a 3 day bender in like 2012 and found this 11 minute song that I vaguely remember working on. I just made it a non-offensive length and released it as is. I feel like that one found me.

The image of the gate in the title refers to the real gate between Africa and Saudi Arabia, which is believed to be the place where the first humans migrated and went on to populate the rest of the world. How do you take a concept like that, and turn it in to densely electronic music? Do you have a process that you follow, or do you create each song differently?
We came up with the concept when putting together our first EP, Black Earth That Made Me. The only idea we have for WHITE RING is to keep changing. We like too much shit to get weighed down with any one ideology. We kind of just want to tell a story that helps people realize they are not alone. Trying to tell a story about struggling to survive. We have had 6-8 different setups for recording. As soon as we get comfortable with something we get rid of it.

As we’re a new music blog, we always ask bands what other new bands or artists they’ve been listening too. Who can you recommend to us?
I’ve just been listening to a lot of The Soft Moon, John Maus and Korn lately.

What are your plans for the rest of 2018?
We just started recording our next EP, touring the album and we are working on launching a manufacturing company.

Finally, if you weren’t creating music as White Ring – what do you think you’d be doing instead?
I would be making music in my room doing a job that I don’t like as much!

Thanks to WHITE RING for answering our questions!
Pre-order Gate Of Grief here.
Follow the band on Facebook for more updates.

Photo Credit: Jason PD

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Introducing Interview: Delhia de France

Electronica artist Delhia de France has just released her debut EP, Morai. We caught up with Delhia de France to talk about the release, the inspiration behind the name (Greek goddesses of fate representing divine feminine power), fossil waterfalls and so much more…

Welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about how you got started as an artist?
Hi Ladies thanks for having me! The music was always there: I had piano lessons at age 7, wrote my first song at 10 and had classical singing lessons at 15 which was when I also started my first band – a hiphop project with 2 Mc’s, a DJ and me. I went on to study design to have a possible alternative until I realised that I didn’t want any plan b.

You are described as a ccollaborator, producer, songwriter and visual performer – do you feel you identify more strongly with one particular creative arm, or do all these aspects of your life influence the other?
I´d say music is definitely the core but I love to express myself in any way I feel.  Ultimately I am interested in creating a whole world, a gesamtkunstwerk if you will. And yes they definitely influence each other, like, when I write I always see images with it or I write from an image.

You are originally from East Berlin, what was it like growing up there in the ’90s after the wall came down?
Well, I was very little and of course didn’t realize what that meant at the time but in retrospective I think the vibe was feeling free on one hand but also very confusing and insecure on the other hand ’cause nobody really knew what was going to happen…  The millennium for me was a wild time, growing up between all these subcultures of hiphop, techno and drum and bass. Nobody really cared we were just having fun.

I read that you completely lost your voice at 17, starting therapy to try and recover it? That must have had an incredible impact on you both physically, emotionally and creatively?
Oh definitely, I thought I would never be able to sing again. You feel helpless surrendering to your body. On the other side it was a chance to learn how to be careful with myself, my body and my mind. A lot of it was fear. I believe that most of our illnesses are deeply rooted within our mind, manifested pain in a way.

We’re loving your latest single ‘Waterfalls’ at GIHE HQ, can you tell us a bit more about what inspired this?
When I write I mostly write on in sounds. I would come up with something completely different if I´d play chords on a piano than on a certain synth. With waterfalls the sound felt so watery and the word waterfalls popped pretty quickly while Lester and me where Jamming, and then I just followed that image.  I had recently visited a fossil waterfall and the deep canyons of water and sanded silky stone were such a strong picture – incredible force yet such gentle form. I guess that inspired the song.

And the single is part of your upcoming EP Moirai set for release ‪on 13th July, how would you describe the themes of this record?
The Sound of the EP is electronic but warm and organic, yet dark and melancholic. I guess thats just something I am really drawn to. I like playing with textures and vocal layers and Robot adds his magic with his signature hypnotic beats and baselines. We both love detailed and rich sounds. The visual theme evolves around the Moirai, the three goddess sisters from Ancient Greek, weaving mankind’s destiny. I have always admired greek philosophy and mythology. I like how it is explaining mundane concepts with divine intention and I think thats not only beautiful but consolidating in a world striving for meaning and being obsessed with the material.

The EP was made in collaboration with Grammy winner Lester Mendez and Robot Koch, how did you find the creative process working with such renowned people?
I wrote all tracks together with Robot Koch except for waterfalls, which we wrote together with Lester. Robot and me have been working together for a while but I think this project has been quite challenging for both of us as I would also be co-producing most of the songs.  I am blessed to be able to work with someone who gives me so much freedom and encourages me to go down my own path.  Writing with Lester has been equally amazing, he is the most humble and kind person. His studio is full with synths and instruments, so we would take bits and pieces from digital and analogue gear, record sounds on his modular and Robot even played drums. Both Robot and Lester work very fast which was a bit hard at times for me as I would need my time to retreat to writing the lyrics… mixing especially is quite a difficult process for me, which Robot and I did together.

Throughout your music career you’ve collaborated with numerous people, do you have a particular project that you are most proud of?
One of the highlights definitely was playing with the MDR Symphony Orchestra and the Stueba Philharmonie together with my band project Pentatones. Also when Sony used the song I made with Robot Koch and Savannah Jo Lack for their worldwide ad campaign.

What are the differences between the music scenes in Berlin and LA?
I think Berlin in general has bit of rawer, darker vibe and you can feel that in the music.  It’s much more electronic dance music oriented which makes sense given the dark winter months here. Total opposite to the eternal sunshine of LA which mirrors in a rather positive and warm sound I think.

As a visual performer, can you tell us what can fans could expect from your live music shows? 
I want people to enter a different world for a bit and I am now shaping that world. It probably will be very stripped down at first but for the future I envision a raza immersive and performative live show.

More importantly are you planning on coming to the UK anytime soon??
Definitely wanna play the UK, but nothing concrete yet. Stay tuned!

Finally as we’re a new music focused site, are there any other new/upcoming bands or artists you’d suggest we check out?
I’m lucky to be surrounded by some amazingly talented people, especially women. My LA friend Drum&Lace has just released two beautiful ambient songs, RYAT, also from LA, who has already released on Flying Lotus label… Brainfeeder will drop some unreleased material in the summer and another close collaborator, violinist Savannah Jo Lack will release her neoclassical debut in Autumn… And if you haven’t heard yet about Perera Elsewhere from Berlin you should definitely check out her trippy doomfolk productions.

Morai, the debut EP from Delhia De France, is out now via Trees and Cyborgs.

 

PLAYLIST: July 2018

British summer time is in full swing, and the gorgeous/overwhelming heat makes every day feel like a summer holiday *wipes beads of sweat from brow*. If you’re stuck behind your desk however, fear not! We have a red hot set of new tunes to see you through the rest of the month. Take some time to scroll through our track selections, and hit play on the Spotify link at the bottom of the page…

 

Hercules & Love Affair – ‘Blind’
Taken from their self-titled album released in 2008 – the same year I attended London Pride for the first time – and without a doubt, the theme tune to me fully embracing my sexuality; feeling proud of who I was and strong enough to come out happily in all aspects of my life. Last weekend marked the end of the Pride Festival in London, with the Pride in London march on Saturday, where I marched with Switchboard the LGBT+ Helpline that I am a Trustee for. It was a great experience, and only mildly marred by the TERFS protest at the beginning. As a cis-gendered lesbian I denounce everything they stand for and pointedly want to say that I do not agree with any of their statements. I marched for the achievements we have made in society throughout the years to now, but also for all the essential changes still to come…one thing remains the same, it’s about standing for equality. Equality for everyone, everywhere. (Tash Walker)

Indian Queens – ‘Pretty Little Thing’
Equal parts driving and delicate: Hackney trio Indian Queens have shared their new track ‘Pretty Little Thing’ – and it’s as attractive to the ears as its namesake suggests. Released via Cool Thing Records, the single is an infectious blur of hypnotic vocals and shoe gaze guitar sounds. They received a standing ovation after their set at Robert Smith’s Meltdown Festival last month, and this track has been swirling around my brain ever since. (Kate Crudgington)

Handsome Eric – ‘Oh No’
I fell a bit love with Handsome Eric on seeing them support Shamir last week at Camden Assembly. As the raw, honest emotion of Stephen O’Dowd propels the track, whirring hooks and a driving energy bring to mind Manchester artist, and personal favourite, Kiran Leonard. Totally luscious lo-fi scuzz of the best kind. (Mari Lane)

Nova Twins – ‘Lose Your Head’
GIHE faves and last week’s guests on the radio show, the immense Nova Twins have just released their ferocious new single ‘Lose Your Head’. Having received acclaim from the likes of The Guardian, and none other than Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello, the duo continue to prove themselves to be one of the most exciting bands around with the snarling vocals and addictive, frenzied energy of this latest offering. (ML)

The Empty Page – ‘Deeply Unlovable’
We’ve been massive fans of The Empty Page’s gritty, grunge-fuelled offerings for a while now, and we cannot wait for them to blow us away once again at The Finsbury on Friday! (ML)

Queen Kwong – ‘Raptures’
Slow-building bass lines and mesmeric vocals combine on Queen Kwong’s ‘Raptures’ to form a beguiling request to escape unwanted memories. No stranger to adversity, Queen Kwong (aka Carré Callaway) shows how her “cursed mind” is still as sharp as ever on this brilliant new single. (KC)

Carolyn’s Fingers – ‘Twice Born’
LOVE THIS! Experimental pop band Carolyn’s Fingers always deliver such refreshingly unusual music, where I just don’t want to even try and predict where their music will go to next. There is something about there music that consistently dabbles with art/performance and still I am yet to see them live. A firm ambition of mine. Totally DIY in every way, we full support Carolyn’s Fingers. (TW)

Gazelle Twin – ‘Hobby Horse’
Warped, uncomfortable, but morbidly fascinating: avant-garde artist Gazelle Twin has returned with a new image and this un-nerving new single. I can’t wait to hear more of her unusual electronic cacophonies on her upcoming record, Pastoral, on which she “exhumes England’s rotten past, and shines a torch over its ever-darkening present”. Sign. Me. Up. Now.  (KC)

Pitou – ‘Give Me A Glass’
So gentle, so beautiful, and so delicate. ‘Give Me A Glass’ by Pitou is taken from her new EP I Fall Asleep So Fast, released via Mink Records. I think this track is just mesmerising, and it probably helps that it was the first song I listened to after meeting my niece for the first time. So here’s to raising that glass to the new addition in my family! (TW)

Anna Aaron – ‘Why Not’
Love love LOVE! From the disjointed off-beat vocals, to those heavy beats that underpin this track; how can you not enjoy this?! Described as “crunching electronic pop sound”, I think that perfectly sums up this raw slice of intentionally aggressive music. (TW)

Lizzo – ‘Boys’ 
Another utterly empowering and ferociously fun offering from GIHE favourite Lizzo, ‘Boys’ is filled with all the refreshing wit that we’ve come to know and love from the Minneapolis artist. Reminiscent of the legendary Missy Elliot, this track’s funk-filled groove and joyous sex-positive spirit provides the perfect summer anthem. (ML)

Belako – ‘Over The Edge’
I saw Spanish band Belako at Finsbury Park last Saturday kicking off a day of fantastic music from QOTSA, Iggy Pop, Brody Dalle, Deap Vally and more…. And they are now my new favourite band – it was one of the most impressive, engrossing sets I’ve seen for a long time. They delivered each gritty slice of post-punk with a raw, swirling energy and explained that his track ‘Over The Edge’ is “against gender violence” – a poignant and necessary subject. And I just love its immense, gnarly passion. I’m now thoroughly addicted to their latest release Render Me Numb, Trivial Violence. (ML)

Asylums – ‘Millennials’
Essex indie rockers Asylums have returned with their highly anticipated second album Alien Human Emotions – released via their own label Cool Thing Records – and ‘Millennials’ is one of the stand-out tracks on the record. Slower in tempo, but just as powerful in delivery; the single laments the “generational generalisations” that millennial kids face in today’s society. (KC)

WATCH: Macon Heights – ‘The Line’

Formed just this year, Scottish duo Macon Heights are already making quite an impression with their unique style of dystopian electronica.

Flowing with whirring electro hooks and immense, soaring vocals, new single ‘The Line’ is filled with an ’80s inspired, synth-filled scuzz. Accompanied by a video that incorporates elements of the lyrics – including feelings of isolation, displacement and being pushed to the edge – it’s an innovative sonic delight.

Produced in collaboration with Gregor Fergie and make-up artist Erin Culley, watch the vibrant new video for ‘The Line’ here.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Premiere: Lucy Mason – ‘Flashback Romance’

Following her critically acclaimed 2017 EP, and acclaim from the likes of The Independent and Wonderland, dream-pop soloist Lucy Mason has returned with her beautiful brand new single, ‘Flashback Romance’.

Taken from Mason’s upcoming debut album, due out in two parts over the course of the year, ‘Flashback Romance’ oozes smooth, luscious vocals and twinkling, emotion-strewn melodies. A spellbinding slice of shimmering romanticism, it’ll leave you longing for more of her heartfelt creations.

Of the recording process, Mason explains:

“I spent a lot of last year thinking about when I was growing up and I found myself as what I can only describe as falling in love with old memories & stories that I’d forgotten all about. When so much had changed, I couldn’t help remember what everything was like ‘before’ and when I started looking back, I couldn’t stop. I really hope these songs take you back in time, whether it’s back to old memories with best friends or back to your first heartbreak or cigarette. All these kinds of stories are tangled up in us somewhere no matter who we are or where we’ve come from & somehow in making these songs, they satisfied my feelings of nostalgia and made me happy but still somehow, remarkably sad. I called it Flashback Romance, as that’s exactly what writing this album was for me.”

 

‘Flashback Romance’ is due for release tomorrow, 6th July.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Video Premiere: MALMØ – ‘River Of The Heart’

Having just released their debut album, Danish artist Maria Malmø and her band – aka MALMØ – have now shared another captivating offering in the form of a video of an exclusive live performance of album track ‘River Of The Heart’.

Shot by a frozen lakeside at Nordklang Festival (a contrast to the sweltering heatwave we’re currently experiencing in London!), it showcases MALMØ’s vocals at their most refined. As her stunning, soulful acapella vocals soar with a majestic grace, ‘River Of The Heart’ oozes an exquisite, stirring beauty that’ll send shivers down the spine in an instant. With its sweeping ethereal splendour, it’s sure to captivate the ears with its resplendent, other-worldly magic.

We Come From The Stars, the debut album from MALMØ, is out now via Integrity Records.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Martin Baltser

 

PREMIERE: Host – ‘b4me’

“Cut your hair but not your ties” advises Irish artist Host on her new track ‘b4me’, which we’re premiering exclusively on Get In Her Ears today. The song is an infectious slice of electro-pop that navigates the tricky territory between being in love with the idea of being loved, and not being able to reciprocate that desire.

Following on from her debut single ‘Goodbye’, Host has spent most of her year writing, recording and producing music alone. ‘b4me’ is another sharply produced offering from the newcomer, who had this to say about her new track: “Usually, like many other artists, I write my songs based off an exaggerated version of the truth; but ‘b4me’ is far from fiction. I produced the song fully before adding a lyrical element to the music and for me, that alone spoke volumes, but sometimes you just have to speak your thoughts aloud to make them fully register”.

Fact or Fiction: we’re happy to dance along to Host’s upbeat tunes. Listen to ‘b4me’ below, and follow her on Facebook for more updates.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut