After introducing himself with his stunning debut single '4AM' late last year, Slovenian artist ROJS has now returned once again with his vibrant new offering 'Stockholm'.
Capturing more of that warm and invigorating alt-pop aesthetic he is quickly earning a reputation for, 'Stockholm' makes for a beautifully rich and tender listen. With his sweet and shimmering vocal performance layered across a soaring production from start to finish, he continues to shine as one of the more exciting names on the rise right now.
So with the new single available to stream now, we sat down with him to find out more about his origins and what has been inspiring him most over the years.
What was the first instrument you fell in love with?
I definitely fell in love with the guitar first. I remember being 5 years old and my dad had a guitar in the house. My first attempts were absolutely abysmal. But I've been playing for about 16 years now, and while I've definitely had my ups and downs with it, I am recently rediscovering it again. You have two completely different perspectives as a performer and a songwriter. And I think recently I've been finally fully discovering the songwriting aspect of it.
What kind of music did you love when you were younger?
That's a tough one. I remember being in love with a lot of James Taylor's stuff. My dad definitely had a lot of influence on me. He was a big fan of Radiohead's 'OK Computer', Mark Knopfler, and R.E.M. I think the first song I knew the chords to (that was not 'Smoke on the Water') was 'The Great Beyond'.
What was the first album you remember owning?
So, this is kind of a funny one. This was on Christmas Eve, and I was about, I think, 10 years old. My dad got me and my brother CDs, and my brother picked Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, and I got Soundgarden's King Animal. I remember stealing Viva la Vida as soon as I possibly could. It even got so bad my mom made me a copy of the CD, just so I would leave his original alone. But I was so obsessed with Brian Eno's production, even though I didn't know who he was at the time. I loved and I still love 'Life in Technicolor'. Even though looking back at this now, King Animal is really not a bad album at all, and I do like Soundgarden a lot. I was just mesmerized by the production of Viva la Vida. So, basically, if you count this, then Viva la Vida was the first album I owned.
What is the one song you wished you could have written yourself?
I really don't have one such song. But if I really had to pick one right now, then I think I would pick 'Loud Places' by Jamie xx and Romy. It's such a simple yet complex song.
Do you have any habits or rituals you go through when trying to write new music?
Production-wise, not really, but lyric-wise, I find that weirdly enough, I am really productive on planes and trains. Being stuck in a metal tube for 3-4 hours or more really gets me kind of detached from reality, which I kind of need for lyric writing.
Who are your favourite artists you have found yourself listening to at the moment?
I've been manically listening to a song called 'Andrew' by M Field. I've also been absolutely obsessed with Etta Marcus, basically all of her stuff. Her and Matt Maltese.
If you could open a show for anyone in the world, who would it be?
I would probably have to pick The 1975.
What do you find is the most rewarding part about being a musician?
I think the most rewarding part is these little moments performing songs that just make you feel like you can fly. There's not much stuff that comes close to that feeling.
And what is the most frustrating part?
Probably a lot of stuff that comes together with actually making music and putting it out.
And what is the best piece of advice you have received as a musician?
Your biggest talent will always be your taste.
ROJS' new single 'Stockholm' is available to stream now. Watch the new video for it in the player below.