Copenhagen artist Blondage’s sophomore EP I Love Music represents her inner world and her contradicting emotions as she transitioned to life as a solo artist.
Explaining the inspiration behind the six-track EP, the artist born Pernille Smith-Sivertsen says, “During the transition period towards becoming a solo artist after having been a duo for five years, I found myself writing lyrics and songs that were a direct reflection of my own feelings and inner world. To me, this EP represents a personal journey full of contradicting emotions. I experienced grief about letting go of what we had and at the same time, I was feeling so creatively fueled and ready for a change. It’s like having a heartache while being in love. And both emotions are great inspirations when it comes to song writing. “
Blondage is making music with hope that it instills the important message of self-love as well as outward love. “That it’s OK to be fucked up, and the most important thing in life is love,” she explains.
She endeavours to push forth this message with a newer sound. On the topic of her sound and its evolution she says, “My new songs are very much 1:1; my personal story. This approach felt natural and necessary for me on this record. I love playing around with different imaginary narratives and dream visions in lyrics, but this time around, I found myself using music therapeutically without being aware of it.”
She continues: “My soundscape is both cold and warm, electronic and organic, weird and familiar. I love heavy beats and experimental details in both drum and vocal production, but I also care a lot about making direct pop songs that have a clear message. I think the biggest evolution and risk has been letting the production be super minimal at times and letting my voice stand more alone.”
Despite finding her confidence in individuality and voice, Smith-Sivertsen’s inspiration—both personal and professional—remains Esben Andersen, the other half of her previous duo. “He is my soulmate in life and music,” she says. “We still work together a lot, bounce ideas off each other, and help each other find direction. I don’t think either of us could find another person who gets our vision in music that way.”
With the comfort of someone that gets her creative visions even as she continues her solo journey, it’s unsurprising that Blondage refuses to compromise her sound or her goals. “As I’ve met and worked with many talented collaborators around the world, I’ve opened up my horizons musically and forced me to be at my very best,” she says. ‘I’ve discovered so many new layers to my song writing, which is super exciting.”
On the topic of goals, she makes her ambitions clear once again: “For 2020, my bucket list is: play shows that’ll make people feel something new. Start making my debut album. Spend much more time in nature.”
But even as she struts confidently forwrd, she is pragmatic and rooted in humility as well as some amount of vulnerability. Her career highlights don’t necessarily include commercial success.
“The pinnacle of my career must be the live shows of 2017 where I found myself as a performer and just loved playing live,” she says. “I had moments of pure happiness and euphoria on stage on the summer festival stages in Denmark. That feeling of being connected to the audience is magical, and I can’t wait to get to experience it again with my new songs. It’s a drug!”
Just as she feels drawn to music and performing, Blondage is a drug to anyone comes across her—drawing music lovers in with her unrelenting sonic move towards liberation. But she has another quality that nails anyone willing to listen to the spot, and that is her ability to tell engaging stories.
Doing so lyrically is no surprise, but as she launches into her tales of life as a high school student, it’s hard to stop wanting more. Faced with what question she’d most like to be asked, she says, “What were you like in high school?” She answers it herself: “I still have no clue what was going on. I was in a very dramatic relationship with a guy who was a metal drummer and smoked way too much weed and didn’t go to school—made me skip school as well and challenged my good girl profile—but still I was a high-achieving student.
“I sang classical choir and worked as a church singer, listened to so many different genres of music like Westside Connection, Dr. Dre, Bowie, Pink Floyd, Nirvana, Jeff Buckley, Portishead and classical music, and I loved sports and played basketball. Influenced by all this my style of fashion was a weird mix of a hippie/goth/EMO/hip-hop clothes, hair dyed pitch-black, and to top it all, I wore braces until I was 17. I was a complete mess, and it was like I tried to be and experience everything all at once. Oh, now that I think about it, maybe not much has changed.”
Intriguing not just with music but with her lived and experienced stories, the Danish talent is worth every effort of discovering, loving and supporting.
Photo by Zille-Bostinius