Elodie Adams is a multi-talented singer, songwriter and composer from Melbourne who started out with classical violin at a very young age and she has just released her debut EP. We were able to ask her about her career and her music recently and I must say this has got the best answer to the description of her sound question that I think I’ve ever had. Much love for that answer, this EP and I am definitely gaining an appreciation for the violin. Sit back and learn a little more about the gorgeously gothic Elodie Adams.
Hi Elodie and welcome to Beauty and Lace
When did you know you wanted to pursue a career in music?
When I was younger, I never thought about pursuing music as a career or that music would ever be a “job” as such. I was a very introverted child, and used to practice classical violin every day for 6-8 hours by choice. The stereotypical things that other children found interesting I found dreadfully uninteresting and I found it extremely difficult to communicate with people my own age. Music was the only thing about life that made any sense to me as a young person; I understood music, and it understood me. Everything in my life centred around the violin until the age of about 16, when I injured my arms and suddenly had no outlet to express my emotions. Around that time I discovered that I could write music myself, and it was as though a guiding light had appeared at the end of dark tunnel.
Your start in music came quite young with violin and opera, how did you come to rock?
It has been a very long journey. The transition started to occur when I injured my arms and was forced to stop studying classical violin in my late teens. During that period, I started to seek out darker, heavier music that reflected how I was changing as a person at the time. I started to embrace the aspects of myself I had previously kept hidden in fear of rejection. I gained an amazing amount of confidence in myself. In retrospect, I feel the transition was more of a transition to self acceptance than a transition to rock.
How would you describe your sound?
The first time I was asked this question, I asked my producer what he thought my music sounded like, and he answered “Neo-Romantic Post-Industrial Stalker-Rock” which I still consider to be the best and most accurate description of my work. In other words, my sound is a hybrid between heavy rock and symphonic electronica.
Where does your songwriting and composition inspiration come from?
For me, the discovery was purely about finding an outlet to express the pain I felt after losing my ability to play classical violin in my late teenage years. Even though I began studying violin at the age of four, and opera at the age of seven, I never once thought that I would become a songwriter and producer. I always assumed I would continue my path in classical music. Very unexpected.
Can you tell us a little about your debut single Born To Love You?
I wrote Born To Love You as a reflection of feeling distanced and isolated from the people around me as I grew up in the music industry after I left high school. People would come in and out of my life so quickly that I never felt as though I could trust or connect with anyone on a meaningful level. On a plane ride back to Melbourne, I had a vision of an endless, specific haze of colour, which would not dissipate, no matter how far I ran. My mind is usually so full, but at that moment it was completely empty, and that was when the chorus melody and lyric came to me.
Born To Love You will be featured in the new Playstation game Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty, how did that come about?
As a gamer myself, I have been a long time fan of the Oddworld video game series since the first game was released on PSOne back in the late 90s.
Visually, I see the Oddworld Universe as an artform in itself, and I feel immensely grateful that I have been able to contribute my own art to such an expansive legacy. The co-founder of Oddworld Inhabitants, Lorne Lanning, was such an inspiring person to work alongside and it feels a little surreal that I can now call him a kind of mentor in the entertainment industry.
The day the video game was released in July, I switched on my phone and it wouldn’t stop buzzing with new notifications for about 20 minutes! I had hundreds of new messages from Oddworld fans on all platforms of social media congratulating me. Honestly, that moment felt very, very strange.
Having Born To Love You used in the official E3 trailer for New n Tasty, played on rotation in the official Sony Playstation booth in LA, was definitely a defining milestone in my life. We received such great feedback from Sony US, it was such a life changing experience for me.
Can you tell us a little about the clip for Born To Love You?
Writing music is a very visual experience for me. Every song I write has a moving picture playing alongside the melody in my head. For Born To Love You, I knew that I wanted to employ the specific use of colour I saw in my vision, in the music video, to reflect the experience I had when I wrote it many years ago.
On a narrative level, I wanted to explore the concept of the unattainable ideal of ones’ perfect self. In the video, the female protagonist hallucinates and sees multiple versions of her ideal self with her ideal lover. As the video progresses, she becomes increasingly frustrated and begins to realise that she will never be a fictional version of herself.
I intentionally wanted to present myself as being physically unrecognisable in each scene, and use drastically different looks to send a message. I wanted to clearly illustrate that one can never achieve their ideal; perfection can not and does not exist, and the strive for such an elusive concept can never be satisfied.
The debut EP inSUBORDINATE was recently released, can you tell us about it.
inSUBORDINATE is about liberation. I wanted to present a body of work that would encourage the listener to embrace themselves wholly, and not feel constricted by society’s expectations or by the stereotypes of gender inequality.
I greatly value the strength and power of the female both sexually and intellectually and I think that comes across very clearly (lyrically) in my work. I wanted to title my EP inSUBORDINATE so that it would make a statement that the female is in complete control of her mind and her body and it is only her decisions that define her. The way females are portrayed so often in popular culture as subordinate to men frustrates me.
Musically, I wrote and co-produced every track on the record. I was fortunate enough to find Lee Bradshaw of Bradshaw Music Productions who really allowed me to nurture my talents as a producer through trial and error. We developed a kind of atypical production method, where I would prepare the template of the song, and all the electronic elements in my own studio, then bring all the files to Lee and we would fill in the blanks. Throughout this experience I discovered that I want to become a producer in the future, and I am so grateful for this experience as it really opened my eyes to the world of production and rekindled my passion for finding and creating individual sounds.
My favourite part of the process was probably collaborating with Lee on the string arrangements. We both have a background in classical violin, so working with someone whose ears were so closely aligned with mine was something I had never experienced before.
The EP launch was at The Tote on August 28th, how did it go?
It was a really brilliant night. Such an incredibly humbling experience. I had been working towards the launch for so many months and had been on auto pilot for so long, that as soon as we finished our set, I felt this overwhelming wave of emotion come over me, and it hit me that we had done it. It had happened. It was over.
There is a certain ambience and energy that is created when a group of instrumentalists play together; when they are really in synch with one another. I feed off of that energy to give life to my vocal performance.
What can the audience expect from a live show?
The exciting thing about having a team around me now, is that we can really work on the live show from a production perspective. I am a person who is always looking for new and unique ways to improve the work I do, and my team is very much on board with that. I am on break now (the first time in over a year and a half ) but we are set to start rehearsals again in the coming weeks. The time off has really given me a new perspective and a great deal of drive again. I definitely want to look at the live show from new angles following the success of the launch. As a lover of visuals, I of course also look forward to developing my costumes for the next round of shows.
What’s next for Elodie Adams?
Definitely playing a number of shows around Melbourne and potentially interstate. The Oddworld/Playstation connection has opened up a lot of new doors that were not available to me previously, so it’s really a matter of waiting to see which opportunities will follow through.
What does being a woman mean to you?
To me, being a woman means embracing a balance between strength, passion and fragility. These feelings towards the power of the female, influence and inspire me to compose as a writer and artist.
Abolishing stereotypes of gender inequality is something I feel very strongly about.
Thanks for your time and good luck with the EP.