It was only last year that Norwegian multi-instrumentalist Kari Jahnsen aka FARAO‘s self-titled debut EP premiered here on NOTHING BUT HOPE AND PASSION – already a wondrous piece of artistic independence. Now the London based pop singer has her debut album out: Till It’s All Forgotten is available via Arts & Crafts. And in all its playful mysteriousness it is once more an impressive statement of her musical maturity. So we send her over our infamous Introducing questionnaire to finally clarify what FARAO thinks about contemporary life as an artist and to learn about her fascination for the universe as well as a pretty convincing party trick.
How would you describe your music to our readers in one sentence?
Indie pop with skittering drum parts and strange, immersive grooves that place acoustic and electronic textures side by side.
Which 5 tracks should start a mixtape to perfectly capture your musical influences?
Describe your earliest musical memory..
I think that must be me singing in the local church choir when I started primary school. I’m not religious and I’ve never been, but it was the only place I could express myself musically, and I was able to share that experience with my friends in the choir.
Would you rather be a dragon or have a dragon?
I would rather have a dragon and save it as a party trick.
If your music would score a movie what sort of movie would that be? What actors can you imagine playing in it?
My album was loosely based on my favourite film Eternal Sunshine in a Spotless Mind with Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet, so would have to be that one. I was inspired by the fact that they can erase their memories, and that’s exactly what I tried to do with the album. Selfishly just erasing what I don’t need anymore. Turning people back into strangers and leaving them behind.
If this whole musician thing won’t workout – what would be your alternative dream job?
I always wanted to be an astronomer. I’ve been fascinated by the universe for as long as I can remember and used to feel so overwhelmed by gazing up at the stars when I grew up. Especially on the roof of my parent’s cabin in winter time. The stars looked so much bigger and clearer from there than from anywhere else.
Tell us a mostly unknown artist we should definitely check out.
You should check out an amazing new artist from London called EERA. We used to play in the same bands together and now she’s launched her new solo project which I can’t stop listening to. It might be my favourite release so far this year.
The music industry is changing quite heavily these days. What’s the best and what’s the worst part of these changes, in your eyes?
The best part of it is that by the click of a button you can reach out to the whole world from your bedroom. You can do everything from recording to releasing your own material all by yourself, but the worst part is that if you don’t have the money or the organizational/administrative skills to do this, you probably won’t get anywhere. Labels nowadays expect you to come to them with a pretty much finished product before they’ll consider signing you. I recorded and paid for the whole album by myself before I signed to a label, and I was lucky enough to be in a position where I could afford to do that. So: Best part is you can do so much yourself. Worst part is you have to do so much yourself.
Unleash your inner Burt Bacharach and complete the following sentence: ‘What the world needs now is…’
For people to stop believing that they know what’s right for anyone else but themselves.
What role does ‘hope’ and ‘passion’ play in your life?
Passion is what has driven me to record and release my debut album and hope is that I want it to be a meaningful piece of work for someone out there.