It was only a few months ago that we were introduced to a unique starlet in the making named Antigone when Darren Hayes raved about her in one his blogs. We are always up-for-it when it comes to checking out new artists so we thought we would give her a good old MySpace whirl. What we love about Antigone is that when you listen to her music, you are instantly transported into a world of electronic whimsy and playfulness. It’s certainly fitting that this artist calls her creations ‘Antigoneland‘ as there really isn’t much else out there that can describe the mish-mash of sounds and genres that Antigone cooks up for us in her musical kitchen.
We have been patiently waiting for Antigone’s debut London performance as support for Darren Hayes during his Club Delicacy nights and we certainly weren’t disappointed – the wait was worth it. Being a support artist is always tough – you have a hefty responsibility of keeping the crowd entertained before the main event as well as hopefully getting the people to embrace your music and Antigone did just that with ease and grace last night.
Opening with the sublime track ‘Hello Yellow’, Antigone set the tone for a fun night with this jazzy house number and her show stopping outfit. One thing we quickly learned is that her silky voice can charm even the harshest of audiences – everyone couldn’t keep their eyes off Antigone from the moment she stepped out onstage. The next two tracks ‘Into Your Head’ and ‘More Man Than Man’ were ones that we hadn’t had the pleasure of hearing before but we definitely know they are going to be welcome additions to her first album which is almost completed. ‘More Man Than Man’ has a great house vibe and we found ourselves dancing along quite joyously to it along with the rest of the audience. Single potential you ask? It’s quite possible and Antigone seems to enjoy performing this song so we can only wait now until it makes it’s debut.
‘Life Without You’ was the fourth number and Antigone tells us it’s been a firm favourite from all her ‘MySpace Stalkers’, a comment we laughed at due to the fact we have been championing Antigone from the word ‘go’ and forcing all our friends to listen and add her as a virtual friend in Myspaceland. For a finale, Antigone performed her stomper ‘Funky Dancers’ which the crowd went crazy for. It’s been the top of our EQ Chart now for 3 weeks and if you haven’t downloaded it yet over at www.yoctopus.com, you are missing out on one bonzer of a track – a uniquely solid debut from our current high-priestess of eclecticness.
After the show, we caught up with Antigone to ask her some questions that have been on our mind since we have discovered the wonderfulness of Antigoneland.
Electroqueer: We hear you were involved in house music before deciding to go the solo artist route – what made you decide to go solo?
Antigone: I think there’s always an air of inevitability about the whole solo career thing for singer-songwriters. Yes, I’ve been involved in house music and I’m still dabbling in it from time to time with my other project Etherfox (which is still releasing 12’s), but before the house kicked in, I was involved in jazz, cabaret, electronica and Indian and western classical music. So really I’m just returning to my roots! The catalysts for going solo were realising that my catalogue and sound was too diverse for just one project, and also being honest with myself that the only vehicle that would properly allow me to collaborate with different producers and writers in the future was as a solo artist. It’s also a hell of a lot easier branding-wise to be a solo artist for some stupid reason.
EQ: ‘Funky Dancers’ is a fantastic track, we can’t stop singing it – tell us a little more about the song! How did it evolve?
Antigone: It’s got an interesting little history this one! It started out as some ditty on a dictaphone while I was kicking along down a street – the first verse was the seed. Then Shave recorded the intro beat box type thing on the dictaphone another day. We worked on the chorus together, then I wrangled the second verse out a bit later when I realised repeating the first was just lazy! We did a couple of demo’s but then got sidetracked and it kind of fell into the well of our back catalogue until Shave played it to Darren Hayes one day while they were making the new record and Darren just flipped! He absolutely loved it and said that it should be my debut single. So that got us all excited about it again and we relistened to it and thought, hell yeah! It’s cool isn’t it?! Shave did some final production and we recorded it in a few hours at Mayfair Studios on one of Darren’s off days. After the final mixdown we got our amazing golden eared friend Mazen Murad from Metropolis Mastering to work his magic on it (he’sdoing the whole album for us). The response it’s getting is fabulous!
EQ: One thing we love about you is your fantastic style – When you go shopping, where are we most likely to find you spending your moolah?
Antigone: I’m not much of a shopper really. A lot of the time it just shits me because I’ve got such a unique sense of style that not even I can encapsulate what it’s all about, so it’s more about waiting for pieces to jump out of me in predictable environments. I know it when I see it, but I couldn’t tell you what it is otherwise! But now I’ve discovered this brilliant shop called Bang Bang on Goodge St. I’m a vintage freak, which is as much about re-using (in an environmental sense) as it is about finding a unique look, and this store is a women’s clothing exchange that buys and sells high grade designer and vintage fashion. I practically live there – it’s dangerous. Beyond Retro is also good.
still very new to me. Plus I’m not really used to doing solo PA’s. Usually I have Shave at least on stage too or a band to interact with. But performing solo has it’s advantages. It forces you to be very independent and strong, and there’s no hiding. It allows you to be very bold. I’ve been very happy with the responses though. Being a support act is kind of strange insofar as people haven’t really come to see you, but I’m used to that as much of my live experience in the past 5 years has been performing to clubbers who are off their heads! I just force people to pay attention like a true Uberwoman!
EQ: With the power of the internet in full force these days – do you still feel the desire to get signed to a major label?
EQ: After Funky Dancers, whats the next track you’ll be unleashing upon us?
EQ: So who’s on your iPod at the moment? Give us a plug for one of your faves!
EQ: Sydney or London? Imogen Heap or Tracey Thorn? Your favourite 80’s song…go!
80’s song is… so many…. uuuuugh…. ‘Sweet Dreams’ by the Eurythmics? ‘Love Cats’ by The Cure? Pretty much any song on ‘Thriller’… I don’t know. I’m crap at such questions. (EQ – we don’t think so – great answers as we dig up some of these old favourites!)
EQ: So you’ve been nominated for Electroqueer of The Year 07 – what is your definition of the word Electroqueer (we ask everyone this strange question!)