Ambient and awe inducing, La Loye is a creator of stories. Appearing on the scene in 2019, Dutch artist has been turning heads ever since, with her unique blend of lo-fi folk. While many would describe her sound as raw, La Loye describes her music as authentic, and layered with musical and spoken word details she considers beautiful.
Having released her latest single ‘i only hear you in my song’ on the 4th February, we caught up with the artist to find out more about her background, songwriting process, and plans for her debut EP.
Hey! How are you doing?
I’m doing very well, thank you.
What was the biggest highlight of 2020?
I moved into my dream home in July 2020 and it has really made my year. Feeling at home has always meant a great deal to me, and now I feel like I found the perfect place to both live and create in.
Tell us how you got into music, and when you decided to pursue it as a career.
I come from a very musical family, so music was always around when I was growing up: either by dancing to Paul Simon’s ‘Graceland’ or by having random family jam sessions. So I discovered the joy of both experiencing and creating music at a very young age. During my childhood I played different instruments and kept exploring my sense for song craft. In my early teens I started to record my own demos; mostly guitar and voice, but also putting the microphone in front of anything I could find to make it sound like I wanted to. This sparked such happiness in me that I knew that that’s what I wanted to be doing for the rest of my life.
How has your sound evolved since then?
It has definitely become more layered and matured. I’d have to say that it has a darker tone then before. Not only in sound, but in my lyricism as well. I often go into great lengths to give shape to what I’m feeling, whereas earlier on I would be more afraid to really put my emotions into words. As you grow, your music will grow with you, and that’s what I love about it. It’s ever changing.
Your music is very ambient, and yet pulls from a lot of different genres. Who are some artists that inspire you?
I definitely listened to a fair share of ambient music like Jónsi & Alex and Dánaë. I’ve also drawn a lot of inspiration from more classic songwriters like Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell and Nick Drake. My biggest inspiration however would have to be The National. I remember hearing their song ‘England’ when I was around sixteen thinking it was the most beautiful thing I’d ever heard. I still feel that way every time I listen to it.
You’re about to release your latest single ‘i only hear you in my song’. Can you tell us about the track’s meaning?
The song portrays this certain period of time before I ended a relationship. I’m very bad at making big decisions and I definitely hate having to hurt people. Which is a terrible combination when you realize you don’t want to be together with someone anymore. I tried to avoid a confrontation for a long time, which I knew could only end in us parting our ways. The track is very descriptive of these moments before breaking up.
Your lyrics are very poetic. What’s your song-writing process like?
I always start with writing the music, so either a guitar-part or piano part, and mumble some nonsense to find the right melody-line. In this nonsense there are usually a few words that stick out already and I use those words as a sort of guide for writing the actual lyric. I don’t like to be very direct in my lyrics, so I tend to find sentences that leave a certain amount of interpretation to the listener yet are still able to communicate the message I’m trying to get across. I’m very picky of which words to use, so this is usually a very long and puzzling process.
What’s the best advice you would give to young musicians starting out?
Invest in a small recording set-up. It doesn’t have to be expensive, as long as you’re able to record in your own time it’s fine. Just start messing around with putting the microphone in all kinds of places and explore different ways of arranging a song. I’ve felt that it really helps to develop your own sound and urges you to discover the depths of your creativity.
Apart from recording music I think it’s very important to create the time and space to do things that make you happy. Want to skip the party and stay home? Do it. Want to eat cake at 9 am? Do it. Want to go for a walk in the middle of the night? Do it. If it contributes to your happiness then just do it.
Name three artists you’re currently loving.
Lomelda had released one of my favourite albums of 2020 called ‘Hannah’. I’ve basically had it on repeat ever since it’s been out. Other artists I listen to a lot are This Is The Kit and Arlo Parks.
What are your plans for 2021?
After the release of ‘i only hear you in my song’ I will be releasing two more tracks from my upcoming EP. Besides that I’m currently writing and recording my debut album, which I hope to finish by the end of this year.