Updated: Jun 25, 2021
Music icon Aretha Franklin once said: “Be your own artist, and always be confident in what you’re doing.” Artists are constantly challenging themselves to create the best art they can. Sydney’s hyper pop star, Muki, is no exception to this. Beginning her career in 2017 with her effervescent debut single, ‘Sassaparilla’, Muki has garnered a reputation within the Australian music scene for being an artist with incredible songwriting skills, top-notch vocals and an unmatched creative vision.
2021 will see the release of her sophomore EP, Car Crash Through Your Heart: Part 1. With this project, Muki has jumped headfirst into the throwback, technological world of Y2K aesthetics to bring an interactive experience to her fans. But there’s more to it than just that; and we spoke to Muki to learn more about the EP and her artistry.
We love your single, ‘Space/City Limit’. How does it tie into your upcoming EP Car
Crash Through Your Heart: Part 1?
“Thank you so much! I am so glad you are loving the song! SOOOOO… the whole EP chronicles a particularly hard time for me and each song is like a diary entry. ‘Space/City Limit’ was the last song I wrote for the EP and I had written the title ‘Space/City Limit’ in my notes on my phone, because at the time, I was feeling frustrated and trapped in my situation. You could say that I had reached my limit within my physical and emotional space. But by the time I actually went to write it, I was in a new city and feeling quite free and excited about the future so the song balances on this really melancholic but totally euphoric and happy feeling.”
What can we expect from the EP?
“Car Crash Through Your Heart: Part 1 is a visual EP and it is an evolution from earlier Muki. You can expect to see a more vulnerable side, something I don’t think my fans have gotten as much from me. There is a lot of honesty in the lyrics and in the visuals (which was kinda hard for me being a Capricorn/Aries rising ;) - I like to at least pretend I’m in control). I’ve been calling it my ‘Bladerunner Pop’ EP because I wanted it to feel nostalgic but I also wanted to keep true to my desire to keep pushing the sound design and boundaries of pop music. The same way that when you watch a movie like the 1982 Bladerunner movie, it has this old 80’s aesthetic but it’s telling a narrative of a distant dystopian future.”
What inspired you to create the ‘Mukiverse’? Why is it the best way to express
yourself creatively and musically?
“I’ve always been incredibly visual with how I write and with how I communicate collaboratively with my producers. When I'm writing, I am totally immersed in this different space. It felt really natural for me to share that with my fans.”
The Guardian named you as one of “Australia’s rising stars of hyper pop”. How
would you describe hyper pop? What about it makes you gravitate towards it?
“YEAH! That was totally awesome and incredibly flattering. There were some amazing artists named in that article, who I admire and adore, so I was stoked to be mentioned alongside them. I feel like hyper pop keeps evolving so it’s hard to pinpoint the sound, but I would say it’s epitomised by the combination of intricate sound design, a super speed bpm, and a classic pop topline. I don’t even think I necessarily set out to be a ‘hyper pop artist’. When I started releasing music, hyper pop wasn’t a thing at all. I just became totally obsessed with the sound design of artists like SOPHIE and A. G. COOK and was naturally really inspired by them and I guess fell into it a little bit.”
You’ve written songs for Briggs, PACES, the Veronicas and Jessica Mauboy. How does writing for other artists differ from writing for yourself?
“Writing for other artists is a totally different experience. If I’m writing for someone else, I go into the session with the understanding that I am there to help facilitate the artist and their story. I've felt really honoured to have worked with these iconic and amazing artists, and I learnt a lot from all of them. It is quite a vulnerable environment and I feel privileged that they allowed me into their creative space.”
If you could collaborate with any artist on a song, who would you choose and why?
“It is soooo hard to pick just one artist… I would love to work with Robyn because she is just iconic and insanely talented and I admire her creative process.
ALSO, I would love to work with Kylie Minogue, I’ve heard she is super nice, and I think we would write a fun disco banger together. I probably wouldn’t be very good in those sessions though...I wouldn’t be able to focus because internally I’d be freaking out. AND I would love to collab with Shygirl because I feel like we would write a HARD AF song.”
Muki is playing a headline show at Sydney's Oxford Art Factory’s Gallery Bar on Thursday, August 12,