Introducing ILUKA and her boppy-as-hell new single, Sympathy
Taken from an upcoming release, it's bringing some serious Motown vibes.
Having spent a fair chunk of 2017 playing on stages with the likes of Alex Lahey, Dan Sultan and Mama Kin Spender, Sydney aritst ILUKA has just closed her 2017 account with an absolute bop of a single, Sympathy. The single packs some seriously groovy Motown vibes, and also packs an excellent message, but we'll let her fill you in on what that is exactly in the Q&A below, which is accompanied by an exclusive little photo shoot.
Tell us about yourself?
If I could live inside a book I would. It would be one of those dusty paperbacks, buried on some obscure shelf in the back corner, under a messily, handwritten label ‘miscellaneous’. I like the twilight hour and the ocean at night. The colour orange. Cheap wine. Mismatched socks. The crackle of vinyl. Op shops in small towns. Rundown hotels and conversations with strangers. Oh and French films and full moons of course. And being on the road. Always.
What kinda tunes we talkin’?
On the corner of retro pop and gospel soul. With a little bit of space twang thrown in to keep things weird.
Most of my writing is fairly solitary. My head is pretty much constantly awash with musings, ramblings, phrases, melodies. Usually once I have a guitar in hand or I’m sitting at a piano the song starts to take form. I then take it to my band, who add their magic and help flesh it out, then if it’s feeling good we’ll take it into the studio. I like to keep the production process fairly organic. We try to track as a live band as much as possible to really capture the energy. Then I’m all about vocal layering. Hours and hour of singing the same thing in unison, in harmony, doubles, triples, quadruples, basically until someone turns out the lights, then most of it gets stripped in mixing anyway.
Can you tell us about your new single, Sympathy?
When it was written I had this real sense of impotence and apathy within my generation. This feeling that we were products of a system and kind of becoming numb to the fact. Stuck in this work, produce, consume mentality and switched off to the world outside. Rather fittingly I didn’t really know what to do with the song at the time. But I feel like with all that is happening in the world right now people are being shaken awake. There is this darkness and this real ugly side of humanity being exposed right now, through people like Trump and Weinstein, but what we are coming to realise is that they are not separate from us. In fact they are a part of our society. Our culture has and IS allowing them to thrive and in turn is allowing racism, misogyny, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia to thrive. I think this is scaring the shit out of a lot of people, as it should be, and the consequence is that WE ARE WAKING UP. Especially the youth because we have had enough of this shit and we want something better. We realise there is another way and we are working towards creating that other way. Reclaiming our power. As the song choruses... "We want it back".
Any shows coming up?
Yep, the band and I will be launching Sympathy at The Lansdowne on Thursday December 21st. We’ll then be touring more extensively in the New Year with the release of my new EP.
What’s the rest of the year have in store?
Well there’s only a few weeks left, but aside from my single release and launch I’ll be shooting a clip for Sympathy, finalising artwork etc for the new EP, finishing some new songs I’ve been working on, and waiting for an aging, overweight, white man to show up at my house unannounced with gifts.
Where can we hear more of your music?
All of the usual places – iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, Soundcloud etc. And for any Sydney-siders, obviously at The Lansdowne on Dec 21!