Maxim Meyer-Horn

18 Jan
Music

On Our Radar 2021: Afro Soul Godess Reinel Bakole

Not a single day goes by where we don’t discover a new artist but only a few have the ‘it’ factor that makes us fall in love with them. Since ‘sharing is caring’, we decided to introduce our eight favorite new acts by inviting them to ‘La Nouvelle Maison’, an iconic monument that’s currently under construction. The fifth star of our eight-part series ‘On Our Radar’ is the Belgian-Congolese singer Reinel Bakole.

Reinel Bakole radiates so much joy and harmony whenever she enters a room, and really is a sweet soul. The singer is currently staying in Belgium during the lockdown and was visibly happy to join us on set.

Baring her soul

Reinel is always on the move. After finishing high school, she moved to Amsterdam to study at the University of Arts, which really formed her as a performer and dancer. “During that time, I also went a lot to London and just knew that I wanted to live there.” Inspired by the rich culture of the UK’s capital, she moved to London and developed as an artist.

Besides being a gifted singer, Reinel is also an amazing dancer, which she tries to unite in her beautiful performances. “I want to create a real experience. I want my audience to leave the room differently than when they came in,” she says. Reinel is very honest with her emotions and bares her soul in her artistry. Everything about her is so mesmerizing, so we’re delighted to have her join us in this series.

As we already indicated why you should keep an eye on Reinel Bakole this year, we give her the opportunity to fill out our slam book with some personal questions about her artistry and future plans.

When someone asks me who I am, I reply:

Reinel Bakole

Describe your music in a few words:

Authentic, colored, raw, and joyful.

Last release of 2020?

“Pain Goes Away” was produced by Usea and written by myself. I wrote this song a couple of months ago in London while I was in insomnia … Writing this song was therapeutic and interpersonal: I’m the psychologist and client at the same time. I couldn’t just talk about the pain without actually healing. In the song, I address myself — even with support and tenderness, honesty and confidence — and reassure myself that if I wouldn’t hold on to myself, I would do everything to alleviate my aches and pain.

First release of 2021?

The first song I’ll be releasing in 2021 is titled “Miss Blood”. I’m super excited to release the song since it’s unveiling a new layer of the evolution of my work/craft. I would say that it’s one of the first odes to the person I am and chose to become.

Be underrated or become overrated?

One of my main goals as an artist is being as appropriate as possible, stand there in accordance with my values, my imagination, my creativity, and my reality. I don’t want to sell lies. And I wish that the people that follow my journey are in line with everything I create, nevertheless the number of followers. It’s a delicate question as, in both cases, you’d have people that believe in you, your message, and your energy. Drop the expectations …

Artists that inspire me?

In music, there are lots. I’ll forget a lot of them as their impact is timeless but there are some that really inspired me. I would say Nina Simone for her determination and the path of her career. She inspires me a lot with the poetry of her history. Erykah Badu for her aura and identity, her colors and universe. I just fuck with whatever she does.

People often compare me to?

Based on my voice: with Amy Winehouse, Erykah Badu, Sade, Miriam Makeba, maybe a mix of all Niveau performance even when my artistic work is not as successful yet, FKA Twigs, Solange.

Music videos or live shows that inspire you?

Marcus Miller, Tash Sultana, Fka twigs, D’angelo,Yseult, Moses Sumney, Bon Iver, Damien Jalet, Juliano Nunes …

What I want to learn in 2021?

Pole dance, pottery, bass and get my driver’s license lol.

My personal goals for 2021?

I want to excel, continue to feed the fire within me, love more and better. Aim high and keep both feet on the ground.

What people can expect from me in 2021?

New colors, new areas, and my name a little bit everywhere.

What advice do you want to give yourself for the next year?

I would like to be less afraid of difficulties, be less afraid of the sensation of pushing the limits and find power, and courage in breaking that wall. I’d like to find my instinct, intuition, and lose the anxiety of expressing that. My advice always stays the same even if I get bigger and change every day but also get a new sense compared to what I examine.

Styling credits:
Pleaked red shirt and Hakama inspired trousers by Wouter Verstraete.

Photography by Ines Vansteenkiste-Muylle
Production by ENFNTS TERRIBLES Studio, Maxim Meyer-Horn, Dries Vriesacker
Interview by Maxim Meyer-Horn
Styling by Marie Van Puyenbroeck
Makeup by Lora Van Pee
Hair by Kisanola
Nails by Chloe Momi
Production assistant by Isa De Boeck

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