Track Of The Day: ZAMILSKA – ‘Prologue (Live)’

After the release of her third album Uncovered in 2019, Polish producer & electronic musician ZAMILSKA toured across Europe and the UK, bringing her dense industrial-techno beats to live audiences. After these shows, one thing became clear to her; her fans were desperate to know the name of the “intro” track she opened her set with. Now, ZAMILSKA has kindly shared a live recording of the track, titled ‘Prologue Live’, and it’s brimming with her usual pounding beats, sporadic synths, and jagged electronics.

ZAMILSKA explains in detail why she chose to share this new offering: “They say that “it’s not how you start that’s important but how you finish”. However, this does not apply to live shows, in that instance the entire setlist is important. During the Uncovered live shows, I’ve opened with an intro, especially created to open each gig with a bang. Many of you asked “Which track was that? Where can I find it?”. Until now, it was only something I’ve played live. To show gratitude to all who came to see these shows, I’ve decided to release and share with you a version of ‘Prologue’, recorded live. Let this be a memento. Something to start your day, open a new chapter, accompany during new undertakings. If you want to make an impact you don’t tap dance beforehand.”

ZAMILSKA’s stomping beats have certainly made an impact on us. Listen to ‘Prologue Live’ below, and follow ZAMILSKA on Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

INTERVIEW: A.A. Williams

A creator of heavy, beguiling soundscapes; London-based musician A.A. Williams has been compared to the likes of Chelsea Wolfe and Emma Ruth Rundle, but she’s captivating in her own right. Her 2019 self-titled debut EP caught the attention of critics and fans, and now she’s set to return to the prestigious Roadburn Festival in April this year, as well performing a headline show at London’s Southbank Centre in March. We caught up with Williams to ask her about her EP, her collaboration with Japanese instrumental giants MONO, and her anticipations for her London gig…

 

It’s been just over a year since you released your debut EP (Congratulations!) What are you most proud of about this record? And do you have a favourite track?

Thank you! I’m so pleased that the songs resonate with people. Hearing so many positive words from people at shows makes me very proud of what these tracks have become. I don’t have a favourite song. They are each important to me in their own right.

You beautifully cover Dolly Parton’s track ‘Jolene’ on the EP. If you had to pick someone to cover one of your tracks, who would you pick?

I think Johnny Cash would have done a beautiful version of ‘Control’.

The EP also features three “stripped down” live rehearsal recordings. What process do you go through when deciding which songs you’re going to strip back? What elements of a live recording do you enjoy the most?

Generally, each song can be stripped down, because each song begins in that form, as a voice and with either guitar or piano. The hardest thing is to decide how to treat the instrumental sections, sometimes I’ll sing a guitar line or incorporate a few melodies into one piano part, but generally the main focus is to ensure that the arrangement has enough space and doesn’t sound too mechanical. I love all elements of recording, I’d spend every day in a studio if I could. The best thing is to press record when you’re running a song, just in case, even if you don’t feel fully prepared! You never know what magic will happen.

You’ve just released a split EP with MONO. We know you toured with them last year, but talk us through how this collaboration came about, and what the reaction to the record has been like so far.

Taka heard my EP and got in touch to see if working together would be something I’d be interested in. I’d met the band briefly at Roadburn 2019 (I was performing with them during their headline show. They performed ‘Hymn To The Immortal Wind’ with a string quartet, of which I was a part), I couldn’t wait to take on the opportunity! We emailed some ideas between us and gradually found the time to record in July last year. I’ve been so pleased with the reaction. It’s great to see that fans of instrumental music are open to the inclusion of vocals and a slightly different approach.

You’ll be making your Southbank Centre debut when you headline The Purcell Room on March 12th (tickets available here). What are your anticipations for this gig?

I’m so excited for this performance. I’ll be extending the full-band line up to include a string quartet and adding some guest vocalists too. Up to this point, all of my shows have been supports or festivals, so it’ll be a joy to be able to spend more time on stage and create a fuller show.

Do you have plans to release new music this year?

I’m always writing, so fingers crossed!

Who, or what inspires you to create your music?

I find writing a very therapeutic process, so I’ll often begin working on a song because purely because I find it enjoyable. I don’t deliberately write inspired by anything or anyone, though ultimately we are each a sum of everything we’ve ever heard, seen and felt.

You’re returning to Arctangent festival this year in August. Is there anyone on the line-up you’re looking forward to seeing?

I’m really looking forward to seeing Maybeshewill and Amenra, and I’d like to catch Swans and Svalbard too! The weather was so awful last year that I didn’t really get to see many other artists, so hopefully I can remedy that this time around.

As we’re a new music blog, we always ask the artists we interview to name a new band or artist they’ve been listening to. Who would you like to recommend?

Gaupa’s 2018 self-titled EP is so good! It’s as if Björk had formed a psych-stoner band. Also, I know they’re not new, but I was recently introduced to Khemmis. I’ve really been enjoying their album, Absolution.

Thanks to A.A. Williams for answering our questions.
Follow her on Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

ALBUM: Nova Twins – ‘Who Are The Girls?’

Driven by devious bass lines and ferocious lyrics, Nova Twins‘s debut album Who Are The Girls? is an aural uppercut that proves the London duo have a furious instinct for writing anarchic anthems. Formed of Amy Love & Georgia South, the pair have been praised by Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello for their genre-defying tunes, and their debut LP is bursting with their trademark heavy sound.

Released via 333 Wreckords on 28th February, Who Are The Girls? is a raw, abrasive collection of thundering bass lines, uncompromising rhythms and wicked riffs. Opener ‘Vortex’ – home to the lyric the album is named after – is the perfect introduction to the duo’s sound. Swirling, distorted bass and pounding beats permeate the track, as vocalist Amy rips through verses with power and fury. She possesses a stunningly clear voice, which is displayed perfectly on second track ‘Play Fair’. It’s as if she needs no amplification; switching between shouts, snarls, and smoothly delivered lines with ease.

‘Taxi’ is an assault on the senses, with more of Georgia’s mind-melting bass distortion blaring throughout. Armed with her instrument and her pedal board, she executes ear drums with lethal force, and she does so on the equally as pulverising ‘Devil’s Face’. Listeners should heed Amy’s warning to “get out my way” on following track ‘Not My Day’, after which the brilliant ‘Bullet’ kicks in. The track is a powerful statement against street harassment, and the myth that women are “asking for it” if they dress in a certain way. Amy’s lyrics are the ultimate weapon against such insults, making it crystal clear that those who touch without permission are not fucking welcome.

You can take a walk on the “wild side” when the belting ‘Lose Your Head’ bursts through, before being schooled by more of Amy’s savage lyricism on the menacingly slow ‘Ivory Tower’. Hair-raising screams and ear-shredding riffs dominate penultimate track ‘Undertaker’, before ‘Athena’ closes the record. Named after the Greek Goddess associated with warfare, it’s an apt track to end their defiant collection of genre-defying, lethal new tunes.

Nova Twins’ battle cry for equality and diversity on Who Are The Girls? resonates long after their record stops spinning. They are a force for fun, for fury, and – most importantly – for change in an industry that still can’t/won’t book a female-fronted band to headline a major festival. Nova Twins have us riled, re-energised, and ready to ask for more.

Pre-order your copy of Nova Twins’ debut album here.
Follow the band on Facebook and Spotify for more updates.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Track Of The Day: Riotmiloo – ‘Want: I don’t want it’ (Riotmiloo & Eva|3 remix)

Blending Riot Grrrl ethics with dense industrial sounds; London-based Riotmiloo has shared ‘Want: I don’t want it’, a remix of New Zealand trip-hop artist Scalper’s track ‘Want’. Working alongside her musical collaborator Eva|3, Riotmiloo has deconstructed the original song and altered its context to reflect her feelings about consent, and the #MeToo movement.

Speaking about the track, Riotmiloo explains: “When Scalper asked me to remix one of his tracks, I chose ‘Want’. It had to be this one. What if I approached it with the “Don’t want” idea? News, various articles and experiences around me lit up my feminist flame. I had never tackled the subject of consent in a song and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I asked Eva|3 if he would agree and then our remix was born.”

A cathartic, noise-ridden, raw experience; the dual vocals on ‘Want: I don’t want it’ relay a menacing encounter centered around consent. The role reversal by the end of the track reflects Riotmiloo’s belief that the issues surrounding consent can be dealt with. She extrapolates on this: “Consent is more than ever a subject that ought to be discussed. Social movements like #MeToo and Balance ton Porc (Report your Pig) in France have been decried. Questions like: “What was she wearing then?” or “Wasn’t she looking for it to advance her career?” have been said. There’s no need to say them – “no” means “no”.”

Riotmiloo released her debut album La Pierre Soudée, on German label Ant-zen in 2015. Each track is inspired by a real life story which highlights the suffering of women. Listen to ‘Want: I don’t want it’ below, and follow Riotlmiloo on Facebook for more updates.

You can listen to/download Scalper’s Want More EP on bandcamp.

Photo Credit: Stefan Alt

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut