The singer and songwriter of electronica music known as Aria Sappho has released her highly awaited full-length debut album, “Protagonist.” The record has been published on the Sapphic Records independent music label outside the reach of the corporate music industry. In turns both shadowy and beautiful, forceful and delicate, frost-flecked and warm with life at once, the “Protagonist” LP is an arresting and elegant reminder of the sheer power of electronica when wielded by a vocalist and composer of Aria Sappho’s high, high caliber.
Aria Sappho (often stylized as aRia sappHo) cites as main artistic influences Sohn, Fever Ray, Imogen Heap, and Susanne Sundfør. Her own sound takes cues from the electronica genre of music to which these belong more than it emulates any one of them in a particular way. Sappho’s overall sonic texture glows with a hue that is purely hers. This individualistic quality is palpable, easily noted even in the record’s cover art, so much so that similarities between her “Protagonist” album and work by, say, Banks, Björk or the Sneaker Pimps actually seems coincidental more than intuitive.
Sappho’s emphasis on the unique seems not so much a conscious effort on the part of the artist as it does a direct effect of the album’s deeply personal nature. Since it reflects Sappho, herself, rather than attempts to approximate a particular mood, it cannot help but be radically distinctive.
“What inspired my songs is something I only share with people face-to-face,” writes Sappho. “My production style and expression has evolved and matured during the time I have been working on [my album] and that can be heard clearly if listening to the songs in the order I made them.”
By the same token, Aria Sappho doesn’t manipulate music to a mold she has in mind. She records her feelings as they come to her and pens her lyrics in such a way as to convey the truth without tipping her hand.
She writes of this: “I don’t write music for the sake of writing music, I do it because it’s the only way I feel that I can express myself freely. I use music as a way of expressing my emotions (something I’m not at all good at in ‘real life’). If you knew what I’m actually talking about in my songs, it gets way too personal, so the lyrics can always be interpreted in more than one way.”
While Sappho admits that her “Protagonist” record is about “my life, my journey to becoming who I am today, and how I experience life and society,” she also makes it clear that “I don’t want to put a message or meaning into people’s mindset when they are listening to my music. It’s about what they feel when they listen to it.”
“Protagonist” by Aria Sappho is available online worldwide beginning 11 April 2015. Get in early. Very early.
Lead Press Release Writer
“Protagonist” by aRia sappHo-