From a quaint little home studio in the south-east suburbs of Melbourne comes a force to be reckoned with. Bel, an eloquently simple name for a woman whose drive and determination for creative discovery is limitless, and whose music is an amalgamation of her artistic influences. As a producer/singer/songwriter who also dabbles in fashion and styling, it is clear from the get go that her aesthetic is incomparable and her potential is unquantifiable. At just 21 years old, with 1 EP under her belt and 2 festival appearances including Falls Festival, and Big Sound, this superwoman shows no sign of slowing down. Before heading off to Europe for 2 months on a writing trip, she had time to sit down and chat about what the future has in store.
Your music career is going from strength to strength, did you have a very clear idea of the trajectory you wanted to take when you started making music or did it all unfold quite naturally?
I think it’s been a bit of both. I have a clear image in my head of the type person I want to be and what I want to stand for, the music followed those goals. Once I found my feet, the decision-making process became instinctive and organic. I trust myself and I make decisions fast. My gut intuition tells me all I need to know. I’ll always be learning and growing, but nothing is more important than trusting yourself.
Your debut EP Melancholia was released at the beginning of 2017 and received some amazing feedback. Tell me a bit about that body of work; was it hard to release something you had been working on for such a long time, or were you relieved to finish it?
Thank you so much. That body of work still means a lot to me. It was my entrance into this game and I am proud of the message it portrays. It wasn’t hard to put out as I was just so eager to begin this journey, it was more nerve-wracking if anything. Despite my intense fear, I was so pleased with the response.
The official music video release for your track ‘Melancholia’ has some beautifully haunting imagery in it, tell me a bit about the process for coming up with the visuals for that song.
My goal with this video was to show various metaphorical types of imagery that represent turmoil and pain. I liked the idea of using animals, it creates a really primal feel. The process was organic and cathartic. I picked apart the track’s sentiments emotively and then tried to find various accompanying visuals. With the help of my talented friends Tré & Elmaz, we took all these concepts and brought it to life.
It’s clear that your love affair with fashion is reflected in your work and your overall aesthetic. How do the two work together when creating something new?
I don’t necessarily try to incorporate it in, it just happens. Fashion has played a huge role in my life. I was really shy, apologetic and unsure of myself when I was younger. Fashion literally helped free me from demons as I found myself through physical self-expression. I see it as so unbelievably healing, and I want to share that positive association with fashion with the world. It’s viewed as such a materialistic thing, but for me, it has played a huge role in allowing me to be my unfiltered and imperfect self.
You are heading over to Europe very soon to do a lot of writing for the next couple months, what do you hope to achieve during this time? Hoping to pump out another EP or is it more of a way to clear your head?
Yes! I am so unbelievably excited. I’ve been working on so much new material, collaborations and more. I feel very blessed to have access to some amazing talent over in Scandinavia/Europe. I’m hoping this trip gives me a new perspective on songwriting/production, as well as art. I’m definitely going to Europe with a purpose, and that is to complete another body of work that will be due for release in the next couple of months. I’m stoked about this whole adventure. I have a lot of exciting things coming up. I’m playing my first London show too!
What does the end of 2017 look like for you?
2017 is looking like a new body of work, a new live show set up, collaborations and more. I’ve been working my ass off. This new material feels different, but still me. I have been writing so much music, producing a lot too. It’s really rewarding seeing it all come together. I can’t wait to share everything. I’m planning some interesting things. I’m bursting with excitement.