Maxim Meyer-Horn

20 Apr
Music

On Our Radar: Galine’s New Project ‘Lilith’ Is an Ode to Femininity

Are you desperately looking for upcoming artists to be obsessed about before they have their big breakthrough? Our series ‘On Our Radar‘ might be the ideal opportunity to get to know fresh talent. Today, we’re introducing Belgian-Dutch pop singer Galine. After taking a break for nearly three years, the young singer returns with a brand-new EP called ‘Lilith’. Inspired by artists like Jessie Ware and Maggie Rogers, Galine crafted her own musical universe and will release her new single “WOMAN” this Friday. We can not only introduce the promising artist but also exclusively premiere the new music video before its official release.

We always find it difficult to introduce artists in a couple of sentences. How would you do it yourself?

Shit, that’s indeed a difficult question. Let’s keep it simple and just say that I make pop music. There’s somehow always lower critical acclaim towards pop music, but I don’t feel like that’s right. I listen a lot to pop music and grew up on musical theater. I’m inspired by my daily life, and it’s something very important to me to translate common situations into songs and share them with other people. It’s as simple as that. 

Pop music is a very general genre with many influences. What are the key elements of the music you make?

Especially on my new EP, there’s a very interesting tension between electronic music and acoustic instruments. I love this contrast between the artificial and the organic, like simple guitar chords or broken pianos. Merging those elements with my voice are definitely the key elements of the music I make. Sometimes, we add strings or backing vocals. There’s one particular song on my upcoming EP, which is just me on my guitar, but we added a lot of synths to make it sound more like Galine. There’s nothing wrong with straight forward singer-songwriter pop, but I want to make it a bit more exciting and keep myself on the edge. 

It took you some time before you released new music. How would you define the period between your previous project and your current project?

I wouldn’t necessarily say older and wiser, but I definitely have more experience now. I took my time to listen to many albums and I slowly narrowed down my musical identity.My first release slightly overwhelmed me because I suddenly had to play many live shows at some big venues that – pardon my French – made me shit myself. That was all fun and games, but I didn’t have a lot of experience at the time, so that was just a lot to handle. When Covid happened, I took the time to reflect on my musical project so far.

It sounds cliché, but it helped me understand what I really wanted to do. I started looking for a producer who understood and connected with my approach to music. Daan Schepers (Bazart and Eefje De Visser) turned out to be a perfect match. It’s been a tough process, and we ended up throwing away a lot of songs. Luckily, we didn’t set a deadline. Daan an I worked at our own pace so we could fully embrace the creative process. The final songs were ready in April of 2021, but then I had to find a label, a management, etc. All of a sudden three years went by.

Was that a very personal process, or did you also take feedback from others?

In the beginning, I constantly listened to the feedback of others, which is maybe also the reason why it took me so long before I knew what I really wanted. In the end, I had to put that aside. There were a lot of opinions from others, which is a good thing. But at the end of the day, you have to do what your gut tells you to do since you’re the artist who’s releasing music. At one point, Daan took me aside in the studio and asked me to stop caring about every little opinion someone might have about our work in progress. 

Only in the end, when we were almost finished, I started to share it with friends and people from the industry again. At this point, I was confident enough to enjoy their feedback without neednlessly wanting to change my music. Don’t get me wrong, feedback is a good thing, and people give it because they want to help you. But it shouldn’t get in the way of whatever it is you’re trying to say as a musician.

You released a new single at the beginning of 2022. What’s the general meaning of “Team”?

The song is about rivalry, a battle. Like everybody, I often feel like we’re obligated to participate in the rat race. Not only in daily life but in the music industry as well. I’m trying to find peace in letting go of this battle, which, in the end, is mostly a battle within yourself. Constantly comparing yourself to others is nerve-racking and completely pointless. And yes, I’m speaking from experience. It has been the biggest pitfall in my early career. Playing shows can make you very insecure, and you are curious to read reviews or see how people interact. “Team” is not only about the rivalry in the music scene, but it can be generalized to even more.

Is that the reason why the music video features a team of figure skaters?

Yes. Obviously I’m not a professional figure skater, but I love this sport. It has such elegance and effortlessness about it. I happen to know a previous Belgian champion and asked her if she wanted to participate together with the team she trains. She also gave me more insights into the harsh competition of her sport, which really fits the story we wanted to tell. Besides that, figure skating is a very mind-blowing sport. Not to mention the amazing glittery outfits they get to wear. We actually wanted to enforce the contrast between the ice skaters and myself by putting me in a track suit.

Your new single “WOMAN” is coming out on Friday, but you’re already exclusively premiering the music video on ENFNTS TERRIBLES. What can you tell us about the new EP?

The EP is called Lilith and centers a lot of feminine topics combined with a personal, coming-of-age approach. It will consist of six songs, each about a different woman who has inspired me in different times or aspects of my life. Both visually and sonically we worked really hard to tell one and the same compelling story. Needless to say, I’m really excited to get these new songs out there.

What do you want to achieve with Lilith?

I know the music industry has changed a lot since my first release. Covid hit hard, so in some weird way I don’t want to set too many goals. For now, I’m just really happy I get to share our hard work with the world. Anything that crosses my path from there is more than welcome. On the other hand, I could probably give you a list of thousands concrete hopes and dreams I have for this record. But for now, let’s play it safe and see what tomorrow brings.

“WOMAN” will be out this Friday on all platforms. Galine will present her new EP ‘Lilith’ on May 18th in Ghent.

Interview and pictures by Maxim Meyer-Horn

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