Australian electronic music helped shaped the sound we hear today. It wasn’t just names like Flume, What So Not, Alison Wonderland, Hermitude or Wave Racer, but also the summery sounds of bands like RÜFÜS DU Sol also opened up new avenues for many others. Future Classic and Sweat It Out have become global labels. Now there is a new wave of Aussies coming, this time led by women like Alice Ivy and Nina Las Vegas with her NLV Records. NLV has been pushing boundaries and this week it is ready to release the new seven track EP Lapland from promising producer Ninajirachi, which we are happy to premiere today before it’s release on Friday (it may be Friday already for you in Australia).
Ninajirachi (also named Nina), combines sugary synths with crisp beats and fluttering video game sounds on records like “Human” and “Pathetic.” The vocalists provide another element to match the bubbly, cheery melodies from Nina, singing of heartbreak and broken relationships. The project ends with two competing records, the slumped and subdued dance tune “Glass” with its bed squeaks and vocal chops, compared to the frenetic and glitchy “Voss,” which feels like it is leading us in a new direction for Ninajirachi for the future.
The entire Lapland EP has a very Australian feel to it from the types of melodies, the structure of the basslines and the vocal styles. Listen to the full thing below and it will be released in full, February 15 via NLV Records.
We also got to ask Ninajirachi some questions about how the EP came together, what it was like making music an still being in high school and much more.
How did this EP come together? How long did it take?
In January 2018 I compiled a handful of musical ideas that I’d worked on between 2015-2017 and drafted a little EP tracklist. The tracklist grew and changed a lot between then and March/April, when I finished writing and producing all of the tracks. I started with four tracks and now I have seven, and one of the original four tracks didn’t make it. Maybe it’ll be part of another project.
In a way it took from 2015 to now, because some of the ideas date back that far, but I was only consciously working on it for a few months in 2018.
What has been the strangest thing about getting global buzz for your music when you still had homework to do?
It didn’t feel very real, and I definitely didn’t nourish it as much as I could have because I took school wayyyy too seriously when I was in it. The weirdest thing was having fans from overseas reaching out on social media asking me to play in their country or telling stories of how they discovered my music. I’ve still never left Australia, and when I was in school my worldview much smaller, so it felt unreal that my music had reached people in places I hadn’t even dreamed of visiting yet.
How did you and Nina Las Vegas connect?
She played a show in my hometown in late 2017 and I got to meet up with her there. At the show she asked if I would like to work on music together, and a couple of weeks later we had a session and started ‘Thursday’s’ from her Lucky Girl EP. During one of the sessions I showed her my Lapland EP and she offered to sign it. Throughout this whole process I was trying to repress my inner fangirl haha.
How do you see the struggle between the Aussie government, notably NSW and music festivals playing out?
Nothing is forever, so hopefully the next generation will revive live music in NSW when they come into power. I was sad to hear about Mountain Sounds Festival being cancelled - the festival is a massive deal in my hometown and I hope the other smaller, local events that they run aren’t affected.
Australian electronic music really took off in 2013-2014 globally. Its influence is still there, but not in the same way. Looking back on that period, what are your biggest takeaways or fondest memories?
Those were really formative years for my music taste. I was in grades 8 and 9. I went to my first concert in 2013 which was an under 18s Porter Robinson DJ set at the Sydney's Enmore Theatre, and I remember feeling so hooked. I wanted to be just like Porter haha.
What was the learning curve like to work with other artists, notably vocalists, from being used to making music on your own?
I started producing full-length original songs around that time and showing them to a few friends. I didn’t know anything about the music industry what so ever, so I would just tweet SoundCloud links at Aussie artists I admired and hope for the best. It was always the best day of my life when they replied.