With the power to inspire, London-based singer and songwriter Aziya dives deep into self-reflection on her new EP We Speak of Tides. Aziya takes us through the rollercoaster of emotions that it is possible to experience when doing self-work, from moments of struggle to inspiring revelations.
We Speak of Tides not only showcases Aziya’s brilliant voice but also displays the skills of an insanely talented producer who plays most of her own instruments throughout the project. Join us as we explore Aziya’s personal journey and musical process.
We Speak of Tides is such an uplifting project, were there any specific emotions you wanted to evoke from your audience with this EP?
Thank you! We Speak of Tides is my journey of trying to understand human interaction, exploring the grey area of relationships with a lot of self-reflection on being human and imperfect. I guess I wanted people to feel encouraged to self-reflect too.
I recently saw a cover you did of Nirvana’s Lithium. What was it about this song that resonated with you?
I love Nirvana. Who doesn’t? This song has always been one of my favourites. The particular thing about it is the lyricism. He goes from talking about the theological discussion of ‘God’ to using one syllable ‘Yeah’ in the chorus to resolve his existential verses. It’s genius.
Seeing you play the guitar, use the mixer, and sing for the cover was incredible. How many instruments do you currently play?
I currently play 3 instruments! Guitar, bass, and keys. I did play SOME drums on the few tracks coming out hahaha so maybe we can count that too.
The Blood music video feels like the coolest and trippiest club night. Can you walk us through creating this unique visual experience?
I wanted the Blood video to expose how selfish acts and personal struggles can cause toxicity in close relationships, alongside submerging the viewer into a cinematic and surreal world. The oozing blood-like creatures act as a visceral experience of this toxicity, whilst the club is the frantic nature that my mindset starts to take on as I try to understand why this relationship is breaking down.
When creating such an inspiring track like Marathon does visualizing the performance aspect help you with the writing process?
100%. For me the whole writing process for this one was to set a scene and have the listener visually follow me through my thoughts. From being at the diner I talk about to escaping to the river.
Heaven For Me is my favorite track, were there any personal experiences that helped shape this song?
Appreciate it. Yeah, it was personal in the sense I was writing this about two other people I know, so it was interesting to write this one from an outsider’s perspective that essentially reads like a dark fairytale love story.
Are there any challenges you’ve faced when navigating such a male dominated alt/rock world?
I got some advice from PJ Harvey once who I randomly met as she was in the same studio as me (completely surreal moment). But essentially she advised me to stay so focused on my vision, that you don’t have time to think about anything else but that.
How did you find your own unique sound and style? Are there any influences who have helped shape that?
I think from a young age I was always so inspired by a lot of guitar bands/artists whether it was System of a Down, Santigold, or more recently Tame Impala and Ebo Taylor. So I feel like that guitar-driven sound has always been in my writing, but I feel like my sound developed when I started producing for myself, I could explore the elements that I thought were important in music, therefore helping to mold it into my own sound.
Can we look forward to seeing you live this summer?
I will be performing at my debut headline gig at the Paper Dress Vintage in Hackney on the 21st of July. As well as doing the festival circuit in the UK. The aim is to get over to the states ASAP though so I’ll keep you posted.
If you are in the UK be sure to catch Aziya this Wednesday at Paper Dress Vintage. Meanwhile, We Speak of Tides on all major streaming networks.
Stay tuned with the adventures of Aziya on Instagram.
Written By Gustavo Oliver.
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