Having received acclaim from the likes of The Irish Times and performed at showcases for organisations such as Sofar Sounds, Irish artist Roisin Lowry – aka Lõwli – has just released her captivating new EP, Otherworld. An ethereal collection showcasing her ability to create cinematic soundscapes oozing a spellbinding majesty – it beautifully interweaves a traditional classical musicality with more contemporary, heartfelt shades of alt-folk as Lowry’s rich, soulful vocals soar.
We caught up with Lõwli to find out more about the EP, what inspires her and her thoughts on the industry today. Have a read!
Hi Lõwli welcome to Get In Her Ears! Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Thank you for having me! I’m a composer and songwriter from Galway, Ireland but I’ve been based in Dublin for the past number of years. I write and perform piano-driven, cinematic music which often combines strings, vocals and piano. Although it’s difficult to find a genre for my music, I’d describe it as neo-classical dark-pop.
How did you initially start creating music?
I began writing my own songs and pieces when I was about fifteen, mostly on piano or violin, but also experimenting with other instruments too. I then studied music in university where I developed a bit more confidence in composing as I had the opportunity to collaborate with other musicians and composers. I also wrote music in a few bands and original music projects around that time too. I then began my own solo project in 2016 and since then, I have been writing, releasing and performing music as Lōwli.
Your new EP Otherworld is out now – can you tell us what it’s all about? Are there any themes running throughout it?
Otherworld is a 3-track EP which was recorded back in May 2021 in Camden Studios, Dublin. The EP features two instrumental tracks and one track with vocals. As this EP was written and recorded during a time of strict covid restrictions, I wanted to emulate a ‘live’ feel in the songs, due to the lack of live music happening at the time. The tracks are written and produced quite minimally to achieve this authentic, vulnerable sound. Themes of transition, perspective and acceptance are portrayed in this work.
You’ve been compared to the likes of Agnes Obel and Olafur Arnalds, but who would you say are your main musical influences?
Agnes Obel and Olafur Arnalds are big influences. I also love the music of contemporary classical composers such as Hania Rani, Poppy Ackroyd, Max Richter and Nils Frahm as well as piano composers such as Debussy and Chopin. I’m also very inspired by Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley and many others.
How is your local music scene? Do you go to see lots of live music?
I live in Dublin and the music scene here is great. There’s lots of amazing, diverse music to experience and I go to see live gigs as often as I can. It’s great to see so much live music happening at the moment after a very difficult couple of years for the industry.
And what can fans expect from your live shows?
My shows are very focused on the piano and vocals. I often have a string section playing with me as well as percussion and backing vocals. I’m currently experimenting with some new ideas for my live shows which will incorporate more modern sounds and techniques. My music is quite delicate and cinematic so my live shows are best suited to an intimate atmosphere. I particularly love to play in churches and halls, where both the audience and performers can be fully immersed in the experience.
As we’re a new music focused site, are there any new/upcoming bands or artists you’d recommend we check out?
I’ve seen some fantastic live shows in Dublin and Galway recently from Anna Mullarkey, Vale, Moon Looks On and Sive. I’ve also been listening to music from Una Keane, Rachel Lavelle, Bridin, Brian Crosby, BK Pepper, Aoife Nessa Frances, Pine the Pilcrow and lots more. Most of these artists have recently released new music so I would definitely recommend checking them out!
And how do you feel the music industry is for new bands at the moment – would you say it’s difficult to get noticed?
I think the music industry can be a challenging one to navigate as a new artist. It can also be quite difficult to get noticed as there is so much new music being released all the time and the standard is so high. But I’ve also found the music scene in Ireland to be very supportive generally, and people are often happy to help if they can. I think it also helps to put yourself out there and play live as much as possible.
Finally, what does the rest of 2022 have in store for Lõwli?
My upcoming EP Otherworld has recently been released, which is super exciting! I’m also working on new music for my debut album, as well as planning some Irish shows which I will be announcing soon!
Massive thanks to Lõwli for answering our questions! Otherworld, her captivating new EP, is out now on Veta Records.