I am about to write the most personal narrative to date. I consider myself a music devourer: I need to find novelty and new trends every so often. The body asks me that, there is no more. I can spend most of the hours in which I am awake listening and listening, and that is why a large number of songs reach a time when, exhausted to sound, they begin to diminish the interest in pleasing me. That is, they start to bore me. It is the natural cycle of music. This is the reason why I am always looking for new talents, artists and songs, and so on. One day, fate decided that YouTube's suggestions would recommend me to a stranger: Amber Mark. The song was called “Monsoon”, in collaboration with Mia Mark (also unknown to me, later I would discover that she was not a rapper or singer, but the mother of the artist). What was special about this moment was the personal context in which I lived at that time: I had recently lost my grandmother, an essential part of me. The love of my life. The person who taught me the most in this world. And so, praising her, I could spend my days. I had a hard time overcoming this loss, and at that time the memories, rather than tearing a nostalgic smile on me, they would make me sadly cry. I was in the process of accepting this painful situation, which I was unable to convey in words. But I wasn't aware that pressing the play on the imagen “Monsoon” video clip would change everything a little. And so it was: The first chords of a song that sounded as fragile as intense and melancholic began to sound. I began to notice how my arms’ body hair stood on end and I began to shudder a little. At that time, I didn’t have a good command of English, but I felt a rare connection that made me understand in detail what this beautiful song was about. I could not help it; tears began to sprout from my eyes. “It feels like monsoon everyday”. The connection I felt with this song was the strongest I have ever experienced, and as strange as it sounds, I have always hidden it from the world. A beautiful metaphor related the rainy season in India with the fact of missing someone who is no longer here and mourning this loss, crying with tears as rain was falling from the sky. For me it was the most beautiful thing that has been written and sung. Amber, dedicated this song to her deceased mother, who unites love with pain, both as strong as the torrential precipitations of the Asian country. As the song progressed, the meanings of it seized my memories and sadness, enveloping me and somehow healing the pain I felt. Made a sea of tears, I became another monsoon. But at the end of the song, I felt relief. I think this was the double intention of this young artist: let off steam to heal. I don't know if it was a song or a simple coincidence, but from here I began to change my mentality: I understood that missing someone and crying for the person was nothing more than a nice tribute. A private garden watered by tears, blooming from a pain that translates into affection and nostalgia. I have lost count of how many times I have heard this song, and the admiration I feel for this artist is as great as the good memories I have with my grandmother. I have always believed that the maximum of artists is to connect with their fans through music, make them feel “something special” with their songs, and this moment was, for me, the most important in terms of music-experience relationship personal. So, having said that, I think Amber, whom I usually think of as a small salvation, deserves a nice tribute from me. Here is my narrative about this beautiful surprise.
Fer Sempere Perales
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Written by “@FerSP”
It's Iggy Iggs! Does it sound familiar to you? Surely, a very popular phrase during 2014-2015, when we were all fans of Iggy Azalea. Listening to this slogan typical of the Australian rapper in a song was synonymous with top of the charts. Today, five years later, for many it is synonymous with… meh. The reason? Let's review what is for me one of the greatest musical injustices of this decade: Iggy appeared in our lives with a spectacular mixtape, Ignorant Art, in 2011. This project, headed by the amazing “My world”, full of powerful and fresh sounds discovered a vivacious, ambitious, badly spoken and aggressive rapper. It was clear that she was very clear about what she wanted and that her goal was to succeed. And she got it. Launched incredible themes like “Work”, un “Bounce” and “Change your life”, Iggy was introduced to the world, achieving success in her native Australia and UK. Azalea offered unusual sounds in the world of female rap: originals, which exploded in the chorus and penetrated the brain. I already lived totally in love with this rapper, but it was impossible not to bend down to her with every single that she released. Her accent was catchy, a mixture of the American South and the Australian desert, and within her rudeness I found some brilliance and great authenticity. The popularity of this blonde began to rise like foam, becoming a reference in the rrss. And “Fancy” arrived. Along with Charli XCX, Iggy presented a hybrid between pop and hip-hop, resurrecting the formula ‘’sung chorus/rapped stanza’’, and the world surrendered at her. The success was resounding. In a scenario dominated by Nicki Minaj, Azalea ran as her successor. And the Australian took care of even the smallest detail: video clips played a crucial role in her career. They often told stories, were worked and were inspired by films of yesteryear: From Clueless in “Fancy” to Kill Bill in “Black Widow”, her second success. The Azalea universe was at the top and with her debut The New Classic, Iggy showed her true value. Offering a whirlwind of sounds that intermingled like the colors of her fabulous cover, this project mixed rap and hip-hop with reggae, pop and trap. So, so good. But in the competitive world of rap not many people were happy that a white blonde could hold the title of queen. Her appearance didn’t fit in this world, and this was reason enough to accuse her of cultural appropriation. After her debut, the controversies won the ground to music. Our rapper was the victim of a kind of unfair voodoo that made her career downhill. After the bullying received by other “partners” who only managed to get attention through problems, Iggy fell into a spiral of misfortunes that made her lose the favor of the general public. Far from throwing in the towel, the rapper returned to the studio and released “Team” as a preview of her second album, Digital Distorsion. But the damage caused by third parties was enough for Iggy to lose popularity and this single and those that came later (“Switch”, a great song that was leaked and therefore suspended from promotion and “Mo Bounce”) didn’t get much impact. Digital Distorsion was canceled, and Iggy vomited all her rage in the EP Surviving the summer, where she became dark and aggressive because of the injustices experienced. Nor did “Savior”, with its radio-friendly environment, get the luck of “Fancy”. But far from giving up, Iggy has always shown herself as a powerful warrior who has a hard time keeping her mouth shut and under her own independent label has finally released her second album: In My Defense. Iggy Azalea, after all, has only that left: defend herself.
Kim Petras has 26 years behind her back, that is, she was born in 1992. So when she was about 6 years old, she would listen for the first time to ''…Baby one more time'' by Britney Spears, and then her world would change forever. This is just a guess, whether it was Christina Aguilera and ''Genie in a bottle'', ''Wannabe'' of the Spice Girls, or simply paying attention to the latest public scandal of Paris Hilton. The point is that our protagonist developed a romantic and passionate relationship with the pop culture of the 2000’s. From her distant native Cologne (Germany), the young lady watched the American teen scene and began to collect pop idols like Gwen Stefani or Mariah Carey, while facing a difficult reality. Since she was very young, she felt like a girl, and thanks to the support of her parents she was one of the youngest people to undergo gender reassignment surgery. Petras anchored to this golden age of gum pink color, and decorated her folders with cuts of her favorite stars, to which she added powerful figures of the 80s like Madonna and Cindy Lauper; as well as maximum representatives of LGTBI music such as Boy George or Freddie Mercury. This overflowing river of influences made this young woman a nerd of the aesthetic and bubblegum pop sound, something that in itself seems the coolest. But far from having lived through that time, where Kim had undoubtedly stood out and turned into a mass idol, she had the great idea of combining all this with modern life dominated by social networks. Turned into a cybernetic LGTBI queen, Kim Petras began to gain popularity on the internet thanks to her music, her graceful aesthetics and way of being. Determined to become a fav among the gay public, Kim combines all the characteristics that this audience adores: starting with her pop sound from the diva of 2000 era, going through the attitude of a coquettish and spoiled blonde, to which she is joined by an urban-sweet-boyish (and slightly anime) style in pastel colors and board skirts. In short, salvation (or reincarnation, depending on how you look at it, has always remained alive in the memory and admiration of many) of this subgenre of pop. Kim personifies the meme 'I'm gonna give the gays everything they want' (you know what I mean, right?). Being more than intelligent, Kim introduces herself to the world by releasing single after single since 2017 dedicating herself to a genre that is loved by many, but nothing exploited. With ''I Don’t want it at all'', she presented herself with force to the world: a young aspiring co-star The Simple Life, eager to hunt the coveted sugar daddy, sang a kind of ode to ''whimsy'', luxury consumerism and signatures and brands. With an ending that culminated with the appearance of Paris Hilton, Kim rose in a short time as a Scream Queen more, and was followed by thousands of fans who admired her nerve and flirt. It was with ''Heart to break'' when the German showed that not only had celebrity wood, but also as a singer and songwriter, offering one of the best songs of 2018, and the best of her career so far. From these, a string of singles were laced every so often. With these songs, Kim showed pop mastery, a sweet voice at the same time flexible and themes that mixed anxiety, problems, joy and desire (is not the world teen a drama? Well that), establishing herself as a quality artist. After a brilliant and cartoony EP, Turn Off the Light, Vol. 1, dedicated to the American Halloween, Kim presents her first album: Clarity.
Life seemed more difficult after the Flower boy era for Tyler, The Creator. A native of Los Angeles, this versatile artist has been put on the very high bar and he has to work hard and try to overcome this project. But there seems to be nothing impossible for this striking genius of music. At 28, the evolution that this artist has offered in his musical career seems to be taken from a book that mix the genre of science fiction with a typical story of self-improvement. He introduced himself to the world with his band Odd Future, where he presented himself as a sinister warrior, it was a long time ago and not many people remember these times. It was with his album Goblin, already solitary at the beginning of this decade, when the attention of the whole world was made and he presents himself as a young and violent visionary. After this album they followed Wolf (2013) and Cherry Bomb (2015), where the bases are dense and the aggressive darkness reigned. But Tyler was going to sprout little by little, and evolved in each album, improving in terms of sounds and musical styles without abandoning his essence and path. The culmination of his flowering was, right, with Flower boy (nice metaphor), a fair and sincere work. This album went a step further, a medal in excellence for himself. He offered original production tricks, new sounds, letters and rhymes on projections and the demonstration that this young man was capable of doing magic by reinventing himself. And not only that, we can see a clear personal evolution into tolerance: a measure he launched his projects, he opened his mind, both musical and socially speaking, moving from homophobia to play with sexual fluency in Flower boy. Tyler turned from a boy to a man (yes ..., weird, falsely infantile and original man) with this album, which is presented as the best of his career and very difficult to beat. Well, The Creator has put all the meat in the spit to create IGOR, an album care for detail that raises to unsuspected levels all the good and remarkable of his previous work. No, I'm not exaggerating, I promise. Tyler has overcome even more if possible and presents a project inspired by a love break up and the sentimental process experienced by our protagonist. Pain gives us strength, that is understandable, but, how does such an enigmatic being perceives pain? This is what is presented to us in IGOR, a project as crazy as full of nuances, where the singer is multidisciplinary, delving into new styles that merge with each other and showing more personal than ever. Continuing with his more experimental phase, Tyler will continue rapping but will dare to sing his first notes in this project dyed pastel pink.
"The mystery is a metaphor for who I am, or who was at the time of creating the project ... I feel like oftentimes we do not like to be open as people about our emotions or things that we are going through.'’ These are some words that our well-known H.E.R. said for an article in Blavity. Always wrapped in a mysterious halo, the no longer so anonymous artist and composer used her EPs to show us little by little her world, which was shown encrypted. It seemed that, like many young people, the singer had raised a series of defensive walls to protect her intimacy. And many of us know that those walls, once built, are difficult to tear down. As she showed her many abilities, she also opened her heart to us, in a kind of emotional joke. With I used to know her: The prelude, we met a straightforward H.E.R. , that dared to experiment with light electronic rhythms that merged with the neosoul of yesteryears. The singer, who presented herself as a modern Lauryn Hill, gracefully slipped her voice between rap and soul while echoing the social injustices that she and the women lived. With Part 2, the continuation of I used to know her, the singer returns to her origins in an improved way, seeking the correct natural evolution of her sounds, while combining her essence with real instruments, creating more personal and moving sounds, which fit perfectly in her style. Wilson continues with the game of giving us small gifts and surprises about her facet as an artist and person, this time, focusing more on herself, offering a more melancholic and introspective project, giving an idea of the artist's mind. The puzzle is almost complete, we already know who the physical person of H.E.R. is, but we don’t know 100% who she is, who thinks, who feels. With Part 2, the singer helps us to put the last pieces of her own puzzle. The message is clear: she is increasingly prepared to rebel against everything.
It may be that the title is not familiar, but this phrase that invites the exhibition, to tell a truth, to show everything…, is the acronym that hides the name of the young and brilliant H.E.R., an artist who devotes herself body and soul to the R&B. Totally contrary to the way in which this singer has shown herself to the world, always in the background and in the least anonymous way, her name also finds within herself a meaning of great proportions: the key and the strategy that Gabi Wilson (real name of the artist) continues to present her world through her music. The young, natural from Vallejo, has chosen the formula of anonymity to show herself to the world little by little, always wrapped in a halo of mystery guided by her voice. Following the example of other singers like Sia or Daft Punk, she has left aside the image, and has focused totally on the music and her sound. Wilson appeared in the music scene timidly, in 2016, presenting a series of EPs, H.E.R. Volume 1 and H.E.R. Volume 2 together with H.E.R. Volume 2, The B Sides, recognized on the compilation album of H.E.R., which made critics and public fall in love with their classic, slow and soft R&B sounds. H.E.R. seems to have grown in another time, she could perfectly have been the quiet and calm colleague of the more R&B Janet Jackson, in her The velvet rope era. The R&B reborn as a phoenix a few years ago, and now lives in a small golden age influenced by the glory of the 90s, when this genre dominated the American charts. Today, promising young people like H.E.R., Jorja Smith or Ella Mai, who was born for those times, experienced an exquisite taste for these sounds, and new meanings flourish and reinvent them with mastery and quality. Our protagonist says that she has had an interest for this genre and other themes of yesteryear since childhood, thanks, above all, to her father, a musician by profession. He introduced her in the music world and now she knows how to play up to five instruments and already with only 12, she dazzled with her talent in the American tv program Today Show, where she performed with mastery a piano version of ''If I ain’t got you'' by Alicia Keys. Now, and honoring what her name encloses, she gradually reveals her personality, her essence and what she is capable of with I used to know her: The prelude and I used to know her: Part 2 (about which we will speak in the following narrative). Both EPs released in the second half of 2018, served as a delicious appetizer of what is yet to come when, finally, her debut album is released.
I have been lucky enough to see the fantastic Dua Lipa in concert twice. The first time was in Amsterdam. It was October 2016, and this British young woman with Albanian ancestry had just released a couple of days earlier ''Blow Your Mind (Mwah)''. She began to stand out and make her way in the world of young promises of pop offering dance sounds but soft and, above all, with personality. The tickets were 10€ and my friend Sofía and I showed up two hours before the concert, drank a bottle of wine while we queued and still managed to be in the second row (and take a picture with her <3). She barely gathered 2,000 fans, but who worryingly loyal and crazy for her. Half a year later, in July of 2017, I saw her again, much more confident and almost a mass idol. She was at her peak (and even better times would come). A month prior she had released her debut album, the namesake Dua Lipa, and two weeks ago she released the video clip of ''New Rules'', which was beginning to sound all over the world. In just half a year, the expectant crowd to see her had tripled, but the fanaticism and admiration that the fans showed for the artist was the same, as intense as fan can be. Lipa, who presented herself as a demigod of the normcore, sophisticated and urban, which had managed to convert thousands of people and make them join her sect of fans. From that summer, our protagonist would see how her career would take off as few artists’ have. It seemed that she was going to become a world-class star, and she did. Dua cut her hair and appeared before the world with a bob, and it seems silly, but this is often a sign of triumph (Rihanna with ''Umbrella'', Miley with ''We Can't Stop''), who do you think made this hairstyle a trend between teen girls? Dua came to slay. Her unique voice along with her musical style and appearance give her a personality and overwhelming presence that has helped to captivate all the fans she has around the world. With her debut album she set out to conquer the world. Dua Lipa was delayed three times, since the artist wanted to work in ''exciting collaborations''. And the wait was worth it: composed of dance-pop, electro-pop and tropical house dance songs, the artist's self-titled album is presented as one of the best debuts released by a female pop artist of this decade, which revolves around of empowerment, love and sex. In a time when the concept of ''pop star'' or ''pop princess'' seems to have died, Dua redefines this idea in her image. Ladies and gentlemen ... Are we facing the new and renovated pop princess?
I could spend hours and hours writing about Miley Cyrus. She has always fascinated me and I have wondered what will go through the head of this magical, changing and disdainful being that in her day was the prodigy child par excellence, loved by the whole world. The ex-queen of the Disney world lived a reality in her childhood and adolescence that no other child has ever lived and this made her mature (and also rebel) at early ages, in order to get her own voice heard. To her long-lived 26 years, it seems wise to me, able to give you any advice by putting an insult in the middle of the sentence and ending it with her horny laughter. I would not be surprised if a person who has lived in the spotlight since she was born, has progressed more quickly than the rest of the mortals of her same age, having lived much more (in any imaginable sense) than someone who doubles her in age and giving it a kind of "superior" mentality and way of thinking, and luckily, in a good way. She reached a point where she got tired of having to give explanations and the rebellion and the party have been her banner during the last years. Can’t be tamed left no doubt about the indomitable spirit that the world had created for Miley, and it was fully corroborated with the controversial Bangerz, with which this girl from Tennessee earned a do-what-I-want-and-I-don’t-give-a-fuck title. Many would want to do this too. Open to to all types of criticism (which she doesn’t give a damn, to be honest), Miley has been doing what she wants for many years. And it has been with the years when I finally believe that I have ended up catching the ''Miley Cyrus strategy'': to each album, a new facet of hers, a new character. But taken to the extreme, no half measures. Miley is a cheeky girl, we have taught her to be like that, I can’t imagine her doing what Lady Gaga does, which is to offer different roles of her personality but without these having just conquered Gaga's own spirit. Miley lets herself be completely absorbed by the character she chooses for her project, adopting a new being. From queen teen pop and soft disobedient rock with the most general sounds of these genres in their beginnings, evolving towards the most extreme rebellion in the form of sexual bombs and twerk with Bangerz, to be the most experimental artist, smeared with glitter and psychedelia with Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz, to finish reincarnating in a half-puritan and mature cowgirl that returned to its country origins with Younger Now. Nobody knows how to jump from one character to another as disparate as Miley in such a short time and without offering an evolutionary process to get used to the viewer. But, then ... Who is Miley Cyrus? Of all these interpreted roles, what would be the protagonist? Or does she show us a bit of them in each of her projects? It seems that the answer is coming with She is coming, the first EP of a trilogy (She is here and She is everything) that together will form what is expected to be the artist's masterpiece, She is: Miley Cyrus.
What do you do when you are an unknown artist? How do you make your way into the competitive music industry? Should you be yourself? Should you get carried away ''by those on top''? How will the public react? All these questions are sure to haunt the heads of thousands of young artists who have the dream to emerge in this difficult music world, as full of glories as of sorrow. I would not be surprised if young Mabel, a 23-year-old British artist born in Malaga, has questioned this too. For those who do not know her, she is a young R&B promise that appeared in the music scene about 4 years ago, when the critics fell in love with her, but she did not cause great impact in the music market. Since then, the singer has released singles, as well as an EP called Bedroom, several collaborations with the top DJ of the time, and a mixtape: Ivy To Roses, at the end of 2017, and relaunched it with new songs at the beginning of this year. My attention is drawn to the way in which this last project has been proposed, which is the one we are going to analyze. We already presented the eternal struggle in the narrative of ANTI, where we explained that the record companies tend to squeeze their singers with songs without personality. Rihanna, due to her status, has managed to avoid this and be heard by herself, but ... what if you are a relatively new artist without any strength in this industry? Well, Mabel has been very smart.
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Collected by ”@FerSP”
Fashion designer & fashion stylist