Premiere: Mojo Juju and Joelistics team up for Leave It All Behind, EP out tomorrow
The two prolific voices of Australian music will share their collaborative EP project, titled GHOST TOWN, this Friday.
It's difficult to find two Australian musicians so rich in their craft as Mojo Juju and Joelistics. The former is a musician amongst the country's most remarkable and respected, with their 2018 record Native Tongue being an intricate and nuance-filled exploration of family and identity; a light shined upon the people often left ignored from cultural commercialism – regional kids, people of colour, queer people, Indigenous Australians. The latter, meanwhile, is someone who helped bring the record to life; Joelistics often found behind-the-scenes of incredible records from Birdz, Haiku Hands, SAATSUMA and others in the midst of putting out their own work, which stretches back almost a decade in itself.
This Friday, they'll share a collaborative EP together that'll deepen and explore the connection made working on Mojo Juju's Native Tongue, with GHOST TOWN representing a greater collaborative partnership between two musicians at the forefront of Australia's cultural change and the many pockets of brilliance included within this. It's a mini-album that explores the complexities of 'ghosts' in their many forms, the release's biography states, whether it be in the context of past memories and love, or painful reminiscence of things that could've been said in the past, whisked together with a gentle blend of R&B, pop and hip-hop that diversifies their respective discographies.
Leave It All Behind, the EP's leading project whose video premieres today, is an example that encapsulates the record's theme. It's a dizzying, constantly-morphing package of swooning R&B and sharp electronica that highlights the best of both Mojo Juju's spectacular vocal and Joelistic's status as a go-to producer behind-the-scenes, while – as Mojo Juju explains – the single details her exploration of fame and the question of authenticity that comes alongside it (something you, interestingly enough, see mostly questioned of female, trans and non-binary musicians – and not males). "Despite all the positivity around the song, there have been times where it’s been hard not to tune into the haters. There were people who lashed out because were offended or confronted by it. Some people questioned my authenticity and my motivations – like I didn’t have a right to tell my own story. That felt really toxic," Mojo explains. "I also observed certain people from within the industry who had previously snubbed my work, suddenly wanting to claim some type of proximity to me. It took a lot of effort for me not to feel cynical about that. So this song is a self-affirmation, and a reminder to let go and break free of all that negativity."
Directed by Paul Van Kan, the video clip is a late-night, swagger-filled take on the single's lyrical theme, as Paul himself explains: "Mojo Juju teams up with Joelistics to tell a story of her social and political experience with the music industry, media, and certain social circles following the release of her hit song, Native Tongue. Mojo’s powerful voice and Joel’s glitchy hypnotic beats lend a perfect canvas to shoot something emotionally meaningful but gritty," he says. "The two main verse scenes feature characters that metaphorically represent the individuals Mojo frustrations are aimed at. We felt it was important to show that although Mojo is sharing her experience with us, she needed to remain indifferent in her demeanour. Hence, she doesn’t interact with anybody within the film clip except for Joel. Almost like they are figments of her imagination or a fading past."
Dive into the clip below, and stay tuned as the greater EP arrives tomorrow – stay tuned for its greater release HERE.
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