in the Category: music
Imagine endless hayfields, a gloomy pink sunset and the soothing sound of Malibu’s gauzy lullabies, a mix of looped string chords, sampled cathedral choirs and a lot of heart. Occasionally you’ll hear her sweet voice with lots of reverb. Clearly non-conformist, Malibu’s soft and magical sounds are distinctly her own, yet they always surprise us with something new. This French mademoiselle is here to stay, make her mark and keep us warm.
Interview by Laura Callewaert
Photos by Lisa Ahenkona, shot in Brussels
You made the big move to Brussels recently. How do you like it and why the heart of Europe?
Still in an adapting phase. I'm not really a city girl. My neighbourhood is very calm, which I enjoy, and I stay at home most of the time. I like watching the rain fall on my roof windows. But on a more practical note, Brussels is good if I have to go anywhere. It's very easy to take the train or bus rather than flying.
What was it like growing up in the French countryside? Do you feel like it influenced your musical style? Or do you get inspiration more from big cities?
I grew up in a small town in France, and in the countryside with my grandparents. Moved to a huge city, to then come back to the small town.I liked both for different reasons. I think growing up I used to hate the small town and wanted to get out of there quickly – I feel the opposite now. I definitely get flashbacks of simpler times when you're a child, where life is a weird rollercoaster of constant new things and innocence. This nostalgia feeds the melancholia that helps me make music.
Your music often feels so serene and peaceful. Does it represent your personality or are you completely different from it?
I'm not a serene or peaceful person. It's hard to navigate through life every day, but my music is basically me, at heart, to be honest. It took a little while to find ‘my sound’, to narrow my choices down to something that feels natural, something I (almost) don't overthink.
Which instrument have you always wanted to play?
I wish I could play the guitar. It sounds pretty nice and it’s easy to carry. One Christmas I got gifted a ‘magical lyre’. I liked it very much but I wasn't very good at it. I had all the VHSs of Beauty and the Beast up until the ’98 one, and there's this little flute character called Fife, who isn't liked very much. He’s the ugly duckling with a big heart. I used to want to have him as a friend and to be able to play the piccolo.
Are there things you want to pursue musically in the near future?
I would love to work more with a lot of bowed string instruments for future projects, like a whole string ensemble, to say goodbye for a little while to the Logic Pro that I use. To keep working with my favourite cellist Oliver Coates, keep doing what I do, work on another record. I don't like to rush things; if I don't have anything to say, I just won't say anything.
Since this month’s theme is ‘cold feet’, I’ve got to ask: have you ever been so nervous you had to blow something off?
I'm pretty bad with stress management, I must say. I stopped in the middle of a DJ set a long time ago because I had played an Elysia Crampton track way too fast and thought I’d ruined the whole thing so I just pressed pause and left. Pretty stupid, but I really couldn't handle it.
I stopped in the middle of a DJ set a long time ago because I had played an Elysia Crampton track way too fast and thought I’d ruined the whole thing so I just pressed pause and left
If you had to host a club night which three artists would you definitely book?
I would book Chicane (UK), John Beltran (US) and Femi (SWE).
You studied film studies, right? Which movie scene is your all-time favourite?
Really hard question. I have a very vague memory of films I watch, even ones that I watched yesterday. I just remember how I feel when I watch a film, that's what sticks. Then I remember glimpses, kind of like a dream. I love Fantasia (W. Disney), The Piano (J. Campion), Orlando (S. Potter), American Beauty (S. Mendes), Palacios de Pena (G. Abrantes & D. Schmidt), Heavenly Creatures (P. Jackson), L'Effrontée (C. Miller), Eternal Sunshine (M. Gondry)... The list could go on. But okay, if I have to pick something that resembles a scene, I would pick a short film, ‘Life’, by Pelechian.
Which movie would you like to score one day?
The Piano by Jane Campion.
Although, most films I love are the ones that don't have too much music in them... Much harder to make a good film without music, right?
If you should pick a colour to describe your music, which one would it be?
Maybe a soft foggy pink.
If you had to choose one dish to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Spicy tuna onigiri.
Which emoji are you?
The cloud one.
Malibu + Qualiatik
14 Nov - Botanique, Brussels
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