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Interview: Andreya Triana

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As a stand-out new, vocal talent that emerged on Bonobo’s incredible Black Sands album, and with her downtempo, achingly soulful debut Lost Where I Belong, Andreya Triana shone as a bright, rising star on the UK soul scene.

Andreya TrianaTriana spoke to TNS leading up to her Ninja Tune released sophomore album.

Knocking on any doors available in her local London music scene Triana did work experience at radio stations and record agents looking for a permanent break into music. In 2006, she got into  “a thing called Red Bull Music Academy and did tracks there and that opened a lot of doors really[…]people heard the tracks and it kind of got the ball rolling”.

After a collaboration with Flying Lotus that ball rolled into the attention of Bonobo, who requisitioned her vocal talents for his critically-acclaimed album Black Sands, and his label Ninja Tune who promptly signed her to their roster.  This partnership led to 2010’s Lost Where I Belong. With Bonobo at the production helm it was an experiment, moody soul gem that begged attention.

In 2013 we now await her second album. Triana explained we can expect something different this time round “I think the songs are a lot different. When I listen back to my first album, it feels so innocent and in a very, very different place. [I wanted to] push myself to talk about subjects I wanted to talk about. Love in different ways and relationships with friends and grandparents and whatever. It’s kind of me trying to talk about these things really close to my heart.”

She added that musically it will be a rawer experience than the intricate orchestrations of her debut. This second release is due to drop at some point this year.

There’s an air of the classics in her music, which is foretold by her influences. ““I love the old stuff like Stevie Wonder and Billy Holiday, that’s the essence of me.”

This is apparent in her work: organic tunes packed with blues instrumentation and a whole lot of soul.  “I think if you’re not doing something that’s not you, everyone will tell. Just doing a gig with your voice and guitar is really incredible. Autotune may work for some artists definitely but it’s not my thing.”

Triana is currently playing sold-out gigs in the capital before heading overseas to wow crowds once more. “[I’m] just doing a few gigs here and there. I got a few shows coming up in Berlin and possibly Russia.” It looks as though fans will have to wait until the new album’s release before they can expect a full tour although Triana herself has ideas of where she’d like to tour this year. “Many, Japan being my number one. I love sushi as well!”

In terms of future goals career-wise, Triana’s are very personal. “I think my thing is to just stay in tune with my creative side and vision. I just want to write songs that resonate with people. I feel like I have a responsibility to write songs from the heart, really. That’s just my goal – I’ll be happy if I can just continue to write music that I love. Wherever it takes me, whatever it does, it’ll be all good.”

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