Kiiara's Gearing Up to Release New Music

Kiiara's Gearing Up to Release New Music

After premiering her latest music video, we sat down with the songstress to discuss what's next.

After premiering her latest music video, we sat down with the songstress to discuss what's next.

Text: MATHIAS ROSENZWEIG

Singer Kiiara burst onto the scene so quickly, I'd nearly forgotten she wasn't always there. That was until I checked my Gmail and found a request I'd sent out to interview her over two years ago. She'd just released her debut track "Gold" and wasn't yet doing features (which is both typical and smart of brand new artists). The song went from viral internet sensation—a term that's overused but actually appropriate in this case—to nationwide hit, peaking at number 13 on the Billboard charts. At first, I'd hear kids shrieking over the song's now-infamous intro at downtown New York bars and clubs. A year later, there was a Lil Wayne Remix, and my high school friends from the suburbs of Philadelphia (let's just say a different crowd) were attempting the lyrics. To put it simply, she made it big, filling some sort of dark pop-trap void we maybe didn't even know existed.

After a slew of singles and her debut EP, low kii savage, Kiiara had officially become a force to be reckoned with in the realm of music. A few weeks ago, we debuted her new music video for a girl power track called "Messy". Now, she says, there's more music to come. Check out our conversation below.

What does the song “Messy” mean to you?

So “Messy” is a very personal song for me. I relate to it a lot. It’s about not jumping into the relationship, maybe getting out before it starts so you don’t get distracted, emotionally invested and all that. It’s just like, let’s stop here and onto the next one. Also, I feel like it’s a reverse thing because normally that’s what the dude does. So it’s also about girl power.

Would you say that it’s pro-relationship, anti-relationship or a healthy in between?

It’s kind of anti because it’s scary to fall for someone. It’s scary to feel that, especially instantly, so you just step back and you’re like, “Do I wanna deal with that now? Do I wanna fully jump in or not?”, you know? It’s the little signs too, like the toothbrush on the sink, the little things where it kind of freaks you out. It’s a moment of, “What is happening? Oh no.” And then you question it even though you shouldn’t, but it’s just an instinct.

How does this video play into that? And in general, how do you approach the aesthetics and visual components of your work?

I don’t even picture the music video. When I’m doing a song, all I picture is either the melodies or where do I want to sing it—high, low, do I want to do this, what type of approach, do I want it to be indifferent or sad or bothered, you know?

When it does get around to the music video, how does that process go? How comfortable are you with the visual element of it?

Music videos are probably one of my favorite things to do. I just love it, the whole thing, every little thing about it. For this one in particular, since the song is very minimal in a way, so is the style and the whole concept in general. The color palette was chosen because it goes with the music.

Would you say being in front of the camera came naturally to you or did you have to warm up to it?

I had to warm up to it. It depends on the video too. If there’s acting involved, that’s very new to me. I’m not, like, I’ve taken a class here and there, but those are a whole other battle [laughs]. Because it brings out stuff you’ve shoved away. I’ve always looked forward to it, but now it’s like, oh, that’s simple. I love doing it. It’s a way to be like, let me try that this time or let me do this, to kind of prove to myself.

It’s almost like a way of challenging yourself.

Yeah. It’s like, I’m gonna do this, this and this and see how it comes across.

When you put something out, whether it’s a track or a music video, do you look at the feedback immediately?

I just enjoy it. I put it out. I’ve listened to it. I’ve obviously recorded it, all that.

You’ve already heard the song.

Over 300 times. To me, everything I put out feels old, but I know it’s not. I just try to enjoy the day. I remember someone telling me, on release days, do something for yourself. Go for a walk, go for a run. Go to your favorite spot, just chill, you know? Just take it in. Because it’s like, these days aren’t every day. You never know. Release day, just savor it, I think.

Do you have an idea in your head of the type of person you think is connecting with your music?

I think it varies song to song and obviously person to person. I think a lot of people relate to this one, “Messy”. But yeah, I think it varies.

In a previous interview, you mentioned having previously had an overarching theme that connects some songs. Do you feel like there’s a theme you’re caught on right now?

I don’t know because I’ve been in the studio for the past two years working on songs. Some are over here and some are over there, out of left field. I haven’t pitched songs for the album yet. I’ve just been making what I want to make, so I don’t know, honestly, if it’s all gonna tie in, but I think it will. I think everything has a way of doing that on its own.

It could be something that you even realize later, the theme of what’s on your mind right now.

Yeah. It could be a passive thing, but I think everything ends up making sense and being full circle.

Is there a difference you can feel when you’re putting music out now that there’s an audience who is familiar with you? Is that something you think about?

No, it’s more that if I put something out, it’s because I love it and I hope people who hear it love it too. So no, I don’t put pressure on it because I know that’s not what they would want. They’re just like, “We wanna hear what you’re thinking.” It’s more about honest sharing.

What else are you working on that you can tell us about?

I’ve just been in the studio recording a lot lately. I would keep an eye out for songs being released. I don’t know when, but you never know.

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