From the dark streets of Northampton, shaded by dimly lit street lamps, an alternative electronic musical wonderland is thrown up by Anieshi Pearl. On the eve of her new EP, New Boots shares her new video ‘Understand’ and has a quick word or two with her and collaborator Brett Redvers.
How did you start making/writing/recording music?
Brett: AP started around 2009 after I worked with Ani’s previous band on a song. They split up and I blagged her into working with me. On a personal level I have been writing since ’88, working as an engineer / producer and doing my best to stay out of the music industry at the same time. The old music business model is now almost completely dead: however, so I see many doors and possibilities where I once only saw walls.
Ani: I was itching to sing from an early age; for some reason I felt like I needed permission to give it a go! YEARS later, someone told me I had a nice voice, and that was it! It was all I needed to hear. Brett and I started working together, experimenting with covers of the 80’s group Five Star! It went from there basically.
How would you describe your sound? Influences?
Brett: The current sound is synthwave/synthpop. Mostly based on my love for the analog synths and drum machines of the 80s/90s, and how they blend with Ani’s voice so well. AP has been through many sound developments over the years, but has always maintained a synthpop edge. I’m influenced by genres and scenes mostly… synthwave, vaporwave, Britcore, glitch, breakbeat hardcore… I also listen to a lot of horror movie soundtracks.
Ani: I love all music, I change my mind daily on my favourite style/song/band. I wouldn’t say I am influenced by any specific bands anymore, more emotions and life experiences. I tend to create according to how I feel on the day.
Why the break in releases since 2015, and why comeback at this juncture?
Brett: There has never really been a break in the music creation, we have always been creating. We have just taken a while to package some tunes up and release them. We create for ourselves first and foremost, and sometimes the push to show the world what we do just gets lost in the matrix.
Tell us everything about this new single and video ‘Understand’, and the follow-up EP.
Brett: This new release is all going to be on an EP, we are looking at getting this out by the end of the year. We also have an additional EP we plan to release just before this, that consists of a bunch of tunes we completed over the past years that have yet to see the light of day. These songs have a darker flavour, but are some of our favs from the ‘lost tracks’ of yesteryear.
Ani: We try not to be specific with deadlines anymore, I’m laughing as I type this, because I put ‘AW2019’ on the release date of the EP, so I can set an actual date the second I am happy with it all. The video was, as predicted, a major operation! The work that goes into making them happen is intense, but the results are always so good, so it’s worth it! Paul Michael Hughes is a filmmaking visionary and a genius DOP, so when he agrees to take on a music video, you know that track is going to get sprinkled with fairy dust to make it fly. We made the recent video for ‘Understand’ quite spontaneously, so it was shot in 4 hours, and turned out to be something we are proud of.
Are there live shows?
Brett: It’s been a while since we performed live. Not sure if this will be on the cards in the future, we have yet to see. It’s hard because we have an international audience, so if we played in Northampton for example, one man and his dog might turn up to watch us play! Online performances are in our minds however, but we shall see how this pans out moving forward.
Ani: I’m not a performer sadly. Never have been. I just made myself do it in the past, because I thought I had to in order to make music. I love this new era of music we are in: I get to create, and put it out there with zero pressure. I wish I was a superstar performer! Online would be the only way I think we would go for now.
Are you part of a music scene in Northamptonshire? Anyone you wanna give a shout out to?
Brett: Personally I am part of the online synthwave, rave and hip-hop scenes. The people and artists I know in music are based all over the globe. It’s been a very long time since I spent any time at local venues. I used to be part of the Racehorse band community, and worked at The Lodge recording studio in Northampton back in the 90’s tho – so shout out to everyone from those days!
Ani: I’ve got lots of friends doing great things in music…but here are a few bands/musicians that stand out to me at the moment. Meg Amirghiasvand – anything she touches turns to gold – recently joined Sarpa Salpa, which is a hit with me. I’m also keeping an eye out for Baby Lung, they’re destined for great things! And, the legendary Billy Lockett should be called ‘Billy Rocket into stardom!’.
What has been your favourite AP moment of the past year?
Brett: Writing, recording and mixing. For me, all the fun is in the studio. 😉
Ani: “I like the bit in space”.
What was the last album you bought/streamed?
Brett: Anything by John Carpenter.
Ani: I’m not sure I can put an honest answer for this… If I was trying to be cool, I’d say PLYA, but honestly, it was probably ‘the sounds of the rain’ soundtrack. I stream that every night to get to sleep.
What is your burning desire to do in the future? What plans do you have?
Brett: I don’t ever intend on leaving the studio. You’d have to tempt me with lots of sweets to step outside!
Ani: Might take up a new art form. Pottery or something. I did just start learning pole dancing too. Got the bruises to prove it! No future plans with music [other than get this EP out]. I fall in and out of love with it. Brett waits patiently, I snap out of it and the music continues. So I guess we’ll keep going as long as I keep showing up to the studio!