Maxim Meyer-Horn

18 Aug
Music

Mura Masa: “Upcoming Album Will Have a Lot of Rock and Punk Influences”

Alexander Crossan is only 23 years old, but already achieved great success under his moniker Mura Masa. The Grammy-winner signed his first contract in 2015 and scored his first big hit in 2016. After touring for three years straight, he slowed it down this year to work on a new album. Ahead of his big gig at Pukkelpop’s Main Stage, we talked to the British beau.

Hi Mura Masa, are you ready for the big main stage?

Yeah, I guess. It’s been really good this summer so far. I’ve not done too many festivals this year, because I’ve been working on new music. I’ve been really looking forward to this festival as it is one of the biggest shows I play this year.

You’re breaking boundaries with your electro-music by mashing it up with hip hop, R&B and pop. What’s the next boundary you want to break with your music?

Rock and punk music! I’ve kind of taken it that way for the new album. There’s a lot of guitar, shouting and spoken word in my new music.

What triggered that evolution?

I used to play in a lot of punk bands when I was younger, so that’s my background. I wanted to go back to that, because my last album was very pop music-focused so I started to play guitar again.

It’s amazing to see how you make all the music on your own when you’re on stage, but isn’t it very challenging to put a show together all on your own?

I feel that it’s difficult to translate electronic music into a live space, especially on your own. I kind of do my best and try to make it interesting live for the audience. DJing is something completely different from live shows, I think.

You’re finally releasing a new song next week. Tell us something more about it.

It’s the first song of the new album. It’s quite heavy or distorted. The song features a singer who I’m not going to reveal yet, but she’s an amazing singer and an American girl. She also has an amazing album to come out…

[EDIT: Mura Masa’s new single ‘I Don’t Think I Can Do This Again’ is out now!]

Looking at the features of your first album, what kind of artists have you chosen to be part of your next project?

Looking at the last album, it was very triplay ‘cause there was A$AP Rocky, Damon Albarn and other big names. This time, I rolled it back a little bit and chose some interesting indie artists. There’s a couple of very known people on the album, but it’s not quite as blockbuster-likeas acts like A$AP.

Talking about A$AP, how was it to work with him?

It was amazing. He was in London for a couple of days and he heard the original version of “Lovesick”. He really wanted to do a verse on it, so we worked together on a verse for a couple of hours. He was really easy and we spend most of the time talking about fashion, Tame Impala and other things. He’s such a nice guy and I’m very happy he’s out of prison.

You’ve worked with many big acts, but what are you looking for in a collaborator?

I think I want to be a really big fan of what they do. That’s for me the most important thing. It sounds obvious, but a lot of people are working together nowadays for some hype reasons and to get traction on Twitter, Instagram or whatever it is. I love to work with people who I feel, can meet me halfway on the collaboration.

You’re doing lots of remixes as well. When does a song speak to you?

It’s kind of the same thing again. When it’s a song, I’ve been listening to a lot, or something I really feel is fresh like Perfume Genius or Koffee. Koffee is super cool, but I haven’t had the chance to meet her yet. I’m just looking for someone who makes music that I love, and I always want to do something special with the remix. Something that is unexpected or interesting.

To end. When is the album coming?

January, so just next year.

We’re looking forward to hearing it. Thanks a lot and break a leg.

Photos by Robin Joris Dullers for Enfnts Terribles

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