We premiere the ethereal and endearing video for former Crystal Fighters vocalist Ellie Fletcher aka KYIKI’s latest track, ‘One’
Making the transition from Crystal Fighters vocalist to solo artist, Ellie Fletcher has spent much of the past four years of her life and career extensively touring the globe and this year alone has seen her play Field Day, the Glastonbury John Peel stage and Latitude.
Her solo project comes under the name of KYIKI, a darker, more ethereal persona which comes as a breath of fresh air to her listeners. With her delicate haunting vocals, self-produced dark synths and expansive baselines, KYIKI is creating a unique and endearing aesthetic, leaving us hungry for more. Calling both London and Dubai home, the Hawaiian name represents the exoticism and lush, verdant nature of her sound – seeing her lock into similar territory as GRIMES, Is Tropical and Tove Lo.
With a remix from LCAW on the horizon, ‘One’ is marks the start of a more cerebral and technical era from the singer, one that promises to be as experimental as it is interesting.
Your alter ego KYIKI, has been described as a ‘darker persona’ of yourself, why have you chosen to present yourself in such a way?
It’s not necessarily a darker persona but just focusing more on the more negative aspects of my personality and portraying them throughout the project. It’s almost a positive way to deal with those things, I tend to feel a lot less creative when I’m content, which is frustrating and I have always related way more to darker, intense music so it came naturally to write less happy and light. It was never a conscious decision, it just ended up like that I guess.
What inspired you when creating the new track ‘One’?
I had been touring so intensely, no breaks, so much going on, which puts me in quite a creative/manic frame of mind, it can be difficult to settle your ideas when you’re away and constantly moving, so I had just got home and it came out quite quickly as it had been the first moment to myself in a while and I almost felt relief once it had been written.
What are your influences generally?
I am really influenced by what’s going on around me at the time and the emotions associated with that. I like to listen back to a song and have it remind me of exactly what was happening at that point. Watching live bands as well always inspires me and seeing what other people are creating and getting across.
What was it like going from performing and working with Crystal Fighters to working on your own solo career as KYIKI?
It’s a daunting/exciting combo for me, It’s quite exposing but at the same time very rewarding. I don’t have anyone to bounce ideas off so here’s to hoping I make good decisions…
You played at a number of festivals this year, which one was your favourite and why?
Sasquatch Festival was amazing to play in Washington State. it was located on this desert valley so the stage’s backdrop was pretty wonderful to look at, I generally just really enjoyed that show and love seeing places I didn’t even know existed.
You don’t seem to have a place to all home, touring and being between London and Dubai. Has that affected your sound?
I can imagine it’s added a slightly more manic edge to it, whether it’s lyrically or musically. I think it also changes the way I write, have to get out what’s going on in a more concentrated amount of time, which I think can have both a positive and negative effect. Not having a set base can be quite liberating I think as well as mildly confusing.
There’s already been a lot of hype coming your way since the release, were you expecting it?
I just had no idea what to expect, I can be an extreme of positive and negative at the same time, so I was hoping it would go down ok, however, there was always the worry that people would hate it and tell me to stop, but fortunately, they didn’t.
What’s next for you?
I’m really looking forward to releasing more material very soon, doing live shows and releasing the album. The live show is important to me as I feel most comfortable when performing and want to make it slightly different to how the songs sound on record and add that different dynamic.
Photo: Bertrand Bosrédon (www.bosredon.co.uk)