I like to consider myself a lover of niche music genres. I love uncovering new music and I continually encourage myself to step out of my comfort zone, by appreciating a range of different sounds. My journey through these various sounds has now landed me at the door of “Cosmic Trap”. Bristol-based vocalist Chikaya is on a mission to bring “Cosmic Trap” to the forefront of the mainstream music scene.
Yesterday, she dropped her bold new six-track EP ‘DESCEND’ featuring a fusion of auras. This blue-haired vocalist stands out amongst the crowd not only for her striking individuality in style, but also for her dynamic vocals which elevate above each and every serene instrumental. Every song evokes a different feeling, transports you to a different place and has a different backstory. As you journey through Chikaya’s discography, from her past work to this new EP, you really start to get a realisation of the type of musician she is moulding herself to be.
Each instrumental creates different mental pictures and various feelings of tranquillity that are complimented by Chikaya’s soothing voice. The track Islands from the EP, ultimately made me feel free. It created a mental picture in my mind. As I closed my eyes, I began to imagine myself sailing across the ocean admiring the waves, appreciating the life in the distance. Every time the song grew louder, I began picturing the tide coming in. That’s the power of music and the beauty of Chikaya’s newest experimental EP.
She caught up with me for a chat about DESCEND and also unveiled a little bit about the roots behind her style “Cosmic Trap”…
How would you define “Cosmic Trap” and where did the name originate from?
Cosmic trap is a style I created through experimentation and inspiration. It comes from my love of all things sci-fi and heavy basslines. Not everything I make is cosmic trap, but everything I’ve made has cosmic trap influences. Now that I have found my own niche, I want to continue to develop and play around with it.
Nice, so now onto your new EP ‘DESCEND’. What do you want people to feel when they listen to it? How do you want people to digest your music?
This EP has a multitude of moods all the way through. That was the intention. The opening song Symmetry is totally different to the closing song Islands. This is one of the reasons why the EP is titled ‘DESCEND’. I wanted it to be a journey downwards/inwards, so I made it as diverse in moods as possible. We feel all types of ways all of the time and I’d rather always express that than stick to one mood. If I’m making people feel any kind of emotion when they’re listening, then I feel like I’ve done my job.
That’s a great way to look at it. What was the most challenging song to make on this EP and why?
I can’t really pinpoint a song that was challenging, because it was all a breeze to create with the producer. Having been growing for many years, this is the first time I can openly say, that I’m working out exactly what I’m trying to say with my music. In the last five months, we created a sh*t load of music and then chose the strongest six.
“It was only ever meant to be a three-track EP, but the creativity was strong so the material just flowed out”.
What new knowledge have you gained about the technical side of music from working with different producers?
Watching the creative process with my producer has been eye-opening for me. I’ve learnt a lot to do with what really works best for my sound. I also tried my hand in a DIY video for my song TGI which I edited with old school sci-fi videos. That was a lot of fun and something I’m going to do more of in the future.
What type of genres was more popular in your hometown growing up and how has this helped to form the basis of your sound today?
I wouldn’t say there was any specific type of genre; I just listened to what I liked and what I was resonating with through the years. The first gig I played was in college. I sang covers like Foxy Lady (Foxey Lady) by Jimi Hendrix. For a while, I was convinced that was my kinda style, only to discover as time went by that there were just too many genres that I felt I could work with. My head just exploded a bit lol. In the end, I really just had to be patient with myself, develop and play around with as many ideas as possible. So, I could figure out what is me and me alone.
There’s literally only a couple of months left until the end of 2018! What do you hope to achieve before the year is up?
I want to bring something different to the table, expand my sound and continue to build…
Listen to DESCEND here