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Seven Quick Questions... Womb

Seven Quick Questions... Womb

Interviewed by
Danielle Street
Wednesday 8th July, 2015 12:15PM

Back in May, we were delighted to be sent the debut EP from Wellington songstress Womb. Seemingly emerging out of the blue, the artist (whose real name is Charlotte Forrester) released the lilting five-track offering with the aide of capital city label Sonorous Circle, which counts artists like i.ryoko, Paperghost and Seth Frightening within its ranks. After a few listens of the self-titled EP we were intrigued by Womb, and contacted her to find out a little bit more with Seven Quick Questions...

1. Hi Womb! To start with, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and the music you make?

It's funny, I'm actually struggling with this question the most! I guess I'm not sure what else to say about myself, though I do feel like most of my lyrics get pretty revealing. Also kind of funny in the sense that I would feel comfortable singing lyrics about very personal things, in a way that I wouldn't feel comfortable speaking as openly about.

2. When did you start really making music for serious? What inspired that?

Making music for serious... I guess in terms of writing songs and performing them, I was around 16, and forming alongside my twin brother, Haz, in the band Athuzela Brown. With my subsequent project Womb, there was a change, and the songs themselves became more "serious" and more directly filled with personal meanings, as opposed to the more abstract dreamscapes of Athuzela. With writing it helps me put things into perspective; the inspiration comes from this place.

The inspiration also comes from this very specific time. I was 16 and going out to some of my first shows. That's when I saw stuff like i.ryoko, Seth Frightening, Glass Vaults. When I look back on these nights, I think this is when I was first getting more deeply moved than ever before. I wanted to do this for myself. I think with these bands, they had this pretty cosmic mix of being totally transcendent and down to earth, or real, at the same time.

3. The name Womb is quite evocative, why did you choose it?

It's funny with this moniker "womb", I feel totally connected to it, and represented under it. But I've been told people find it shocking. If this is the case, I reckon that's a good thing. For me, I call myself Womb because I want my music to feel like a womb - which is not a singular thing. It's like the womb is the most sacred, safe place. It is warm, it is floating. Then the womb is also totally sexual, and red, and passionate. And finally, in some ways it is raw and frightening, this eerie zone of amniotic fluid, and then you're pushed out, bloody, into the world. I guess more and more I want my music to be evoking all of this.

4. How did you become aligned with Sonorous Circle?

It seems like a series of serendipitous steps that led me to fall into affiliation with Sonorous. I became friends with Thomas Lambert [i.ryoko] and Sean Kelly [Seth Frightening] four or five years ago through my sister, who was living with Sean at the time, and is Thomas's partner to this day. Then they found my brother and I were working on some music as Athuzela. We sent it to them and they said they'd put it on Sonorous Circle. I remember this being a prrretttyy exciting feeling. We were so young, and the bands we were now in a community with were and are just such incredible musicians and presences and people.

5. I feel like there are tonal similarities between your work and the music made by Seth Frightening aka Sean Kelly, who helped with your EP. What was it like working together?

Seth Frightening is one of my favourite musicians. In his recordings and his live performances he always gives a totally revealing and complex experience. It's pretty amazing all the feelings he can evoke at once - shattered, uplifted, confronted, inspired. The songs were recorded by me in my bedroom, but Sean mixed and mastered it. I'm really grateful for his contribution - my recordings were pretty murky and I feel like he helped make them clear.

6. The album art to your EP is amazing, can you tell us a little bit about it?

Thank you! The album art was done by my sister, Georgette Brown. The painting itself was hanging in my room throughout the whole recording process, so it was there sending me down inspiration every time I worked on the songs. It shows a vibrating bedroom, and the whole lo-fi bedroom vibe was really important to me for this EP.

7. What’s happening next for Womb?

I'm going travelling and I won't be back 'til the end of October, so things with Womb will be on hiatus a bit. But the future is looking bright! I have a music video coming out in August, made in collab with my sister Georgette Brown, and our film-making extraordinaire friend Dan Harris, and featuring the incredible dance moves of our friend Ana Scotney. When I get back I'm looking forward to playing a lot more shows, and really making each of them really special - I think I'll be working alongside my sister again with some set or costume design. I'm also looking forward to recording some more songs, maybe touring.