ELSA HEWITT is an artist weaving away at the experimental cutting edges of what you can do with electronica; blending the avant-garde, lo-fi, musics of the dancefloor, hip-hop, dreampop more, marrying it and blending it and, like loose fellow travellers such as Jockstrap and HAAi, taking electronica and giving it a good hard shove into the present and the future; intending to discover what it might be as a music for us now and in days and years to come.
She’s set to release a new album, LUPA, on Cargo Records at the end of next month; from which she’s dropped the delightful, cut-up haze of “Inhaler”, which you can bathe in below.
Always morphing, the tune is built of jazzy chords, found sound, vocal cut-ups, skipping beats and an almost Aphex-like restlessness; it’s soul-jazz as arranged by William Burroughs, wholly intriguing, melodic and beautifully, delightfully weird. It’s music for the now.
We’re told LUPA is an ode to the kingdom of life and nature; a prayer for searching souls; and a purifying journey covering a spectrum of intensely felt sentiments. Setting oneself a massive conceptual brief there, Elsa.
The album has its genesis in a request to write about a song about suicide a couple of years back; Elsa’s lost a number of friends in that way and found herself examining her own confrontations with anxiety and depression, resulting in an album.
“It really made me face things within myself that I hadn’t been willing to face before,” she says.
“2020 forced me to look at myself on the inside and it helped me let go of some things and turn around negative patterns and understand how your thoughts and mind influence the way you feel.”
She sees LUPA as a complex counterpart to last year’s meditative Ghostcats cassette EP – which, that’s a beauty too. Many of the vocals were improvised and recorded in a single take whilst in the process of building the tracks. Attempts to refine and rewrite these parts served as a reminder that some moments cannot be recreated to the same effect; she couldn’t recapture that first thrilling moment, so sacrificed the search for the perfect take in the preservation of the magic and mystery.
Elsa Hewitt’s LUPA will be released by Cargo Records digitally and on cassette on April 30th – pre-order your copy here; “Inhaler” is out now on all digital streaming platforms.