by Collaborator Francisco Fonseca
Photohgraphy Theo Taylor
Berlin based Alternative-pop songstress Johanna Amelie debuts minimal-pop gem 'Lion Babe'.
The debut release of the German artist, comes in a great moment for her, after three months playing across Austria, Germany and attending some festivals such as Melodica Festival in Nottingham, UK, she is ready for the next step.
As haunting as it is beautiful, the multi-instrumentalist singer songwriter cites Regina Spektor and Joni Mitchell as her main influences.
I recorded the song with producer Gordon Raphael, who once produced my favourite record in the world (‘Soviet Kitsch’ by Regina Spektor.) He has been a great inspiration and supported me a lot in my process of producing my own music“.
With the great chance of working with the acclaimed producer and musician from Seattle Gordon Raphael (The Strokes) to create the stunning sounds that we can witness with her amazing lead track.
“Lion Babe has an amazing story and Johanna’s voice is just soaring!” Says Raphael .
“I met Johanna in Berlin producing and mixing several songs for her upcoming new album. She writes, plays and sings with rare insight and power’
Johanna describes 'Lion Babe' as the story of an archetypal young person coming to the big city (Berlin) in pursuit of independence, only to go under, carried away by the tide.
“Lion Babe’ is about a young person aiming for an adventurous and independent lifestyle , ending up feeling ‘caged in the big city’.
Johanna’s lyrics have an undercurrent of irony and sadness, a modern-day siren song.
Released together with ‘From Within’ which hints at the depth of her song-writing. Building effortlessly, echoing The Cocteau Twins and Florence and The Machine highlighting all the promise of youth.
My songwriting is very inspired by Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake and Tallest Man on Earth – I love those artists for their ability to invent interesting chords, melody lines and strong lyrics.
Johanna is definitely one of the artist that will leave her mark in the future of alternative music, her lyrics, her music, give us the keys to a new and interesting atmosphere in which we would love to continue to be amazed by her voice.
Bizzarre: Where are you right now?
Johanna Amelie: On a train from Cologne to Berlin!
B: What’s the most important thing in your diary this week?
JA: I tell my diary about the musical adventures that I’m dreaming of. And I write poems, stories, impressions, lyrics and loveletters into my diary.
B: Tell us about your songwriting process. What season of the year is the best time to write?
JA: To me, autumn is the most melancholic and cosy time of the year where I can concentrate on writing.
B: You are a multi-instruments artist, what do you like and enjoy the most, playing, singing or writing?
JA: I love singing above all - to me singing is breathing and celebrating.
B: Your music takes us to a very quiet and peaceful world, your songs have a mixture of quietness but they also have power, is that balance the secret of your music?
JA: I hope so :-)
B: You had the chance to create your lead track ‘Lion Babe’ with Gordon Raphael (The Strokes) How was it working with him? What can you tell us of this experience?
JA: Working with Gordon Raphael was wonderful, fun and very effective... He helped me implementing my ideas, and he helped me creating interesting and beautiful sounds - I’d even say he made me become a better musician because working with him was so inspiring and encouraging. I am very happy about this collaboration, he is a genius.
B: Lion Babe speaks about Berlin and its magnetism, tell us about it…
JA: Lion Babe is the story of a young person coming to the big city in pursuit of independence. I see Berlin as a place that attracts dreamers, artists, creators... and that makes it so vivid. You can be whoever you want to be in Berlin. Some spend their time on partying their life away. Like in all big cities, there’s trouble and misery, and in winter there’s a very cold and freezing wind that covers the city in grey for almost 6 months.
B: If you had the chance to share stage with somebody, who would you choose?
JA: Emily Kokal (Warpaint) + Jenn Wasner (Wye Oak) + Kristian Matsson (The Tallest Man on Earth)
B: What's next for Johanna Amelie?
JA: I’m playing a couple of shows in autumn and I’m working on my album release! I’m working on new songs as well ...
B: Tell us your 3 favourite things -
JA: Laughing, my dobro guitar and handstands
Johanna Amelie's debuts
Lion Babe / From Within
Released on Zero Hours Records on August 18th.