Shivum Sharma is set to hit is exotic, soul laced sound home
For most those clued up on south London soul child Shivum Sharma, it’ll be as the fine, light-as-air voice skimming over Mancs DJ TCTS’ vibe-rich dance hit “These Heights”. That, or as the boy singing solo to the beat of his breaking heart on his out-now debut single, “Flicker.”
And for all you unfamiliars, well, it’s high time you got intimate with Shiv and his spine-tingling, heartsick piano- pop. It’s the kind that’s kissing-cousins with Anthony and The Johnsons and Perfume Genius: a vivid melody-palate splashed with Aphex Twin’s avant garde ambiance, Erykah Badu’s softly-softly soul pop, and the ethereal indie cadences of the Cocteau Twins.
Without really meaning to, Sharma wrote his first song – a boxed-in ode-to-love titled “Untouched,” – in 2011. “I was playing around on the piano and I just ‘found’ it,” he says. “I’d always thought of songwriting as such a big thing. It took writing that song to discover I could do it.”
It’s true that Sharma’s artistry is all-natural, but far from flaunting it as some kind of gift, he looks upon it as something to be worked on, and honed, all the time. His humility is touching: music is his all, his one and only. He cares passionately about doing it justice, and doesn’t care who knows it.
“All I want is to reach people, help them through hard times,” he says quietly. “I want them to relate to my lyrics in the same way I relate to the words of my favourite songs.” Dropping to a low voice, he goes on: “Whatever the reaction to “Flicker”, I’ll still go on singing. Making music is all I’ve ever wanted to do, and nothing makes me as happy.”
Both the fruits of studio time with go-to Warp Records producer Kwes, “Flicker” and its blushing B-side “Only You”, are out now.
Fashion Editor: Madeline Østlie
Words: Aly Barchi