Following on from the release of her highly-praised debut album 'Bittersweet' last year, San Francisco-based artist Kelsey Kindall is back once again to deliver her vibrant new offering 'Whiplash'.
Bringing back more of that broad and immersive alt-pop she is known for, 'Whiplash' makes for an incredibly bold and dynamic listen. With her rich and passionate vocals layered across an innovative production throughout, she is returning to the fold with one of her most alluring efforts to date.
So with the new single available to stream now, we sat down with her to find out more about her origins and what has been inspiring her most lately.
What was the first instrument you fell in love with?
The first instrument I can remember falling in love with was the flute. I joined the school band in 3rd grade and I remember picking the flute specifically because I thought it was so beautiful and I remember I practiced a lot and got really excited when I could play the melodies without running out of breath! I also loved playing piano, I would use the piano when I was younger to write songs and it just felt so limitless like there were hundreds of possibilities and chords I could piece together to make something beautiful.
What kind of music did you love when you were younger?
My sisters and I grew up on christian music, Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber. Had to have the holy grail, lol. We would film music videos with our old video camera to Taylor Swift's earliest albums and I had Justin Bieber posters covering my walls.
What was the first album you remember owning?
Zoegirl- a christian pop band who were violently underrated. Their songs are still so good today, it gives the perfect nostalgic 90s feel. I also was obsessed with the girls, we named my cat Zoe after them and wanted to put streaks in my hair just like the lead singer had.
What is the one song you wished you could have written yourself?
Happily Ever After by Billie Eilish. She tells such a powerful story during this song, and the build up is absolutely insane. You can just hear how it resonates with the crowd when she performs it live it's almost impossible to hear her over the crowd. I think simple and straightforward lyrics are the most powerful sometimes, and she does such a good job at this in this song.
Do you have any habits or rituals you go through when trying to write new music?
I don’t really, I like approaching writing many ways whether that's starting with a melody and then filling in the words, or getting a lyric and inspiring a concept for a song. Sometimes my producer will send me a beat and I’ll be inspired. I do try to find time every morning to do some reflecting and journaling and that has always helped me open myself up to finding inspiration throughout the day.
Who are your favourite artists you have found yourself listening to at the moment?
I cannot get enough of Olivia Dean and Renee Rapp. I think they are both so talented and their songwriting is absolutely insane, some of my favorite lyrics. Renee Rapp inspires me because I feel like my on stage personality is a lot like her, both coming from a theatre background. I am just so excited to see so many women in pop become so big like her, Tate Mcrae, Sabrina Carpenter. It gives me hope that people still care about pop women icons!
If you could open a show for anyone in the world, who would it be?
This one is so tricky, I would probably say SZA at the moment. I have been obsessed with her for so long, Ctrl changed my life. So even though we're different genres, if it was just a chance to meet her and hang out that would be worth it to me!
What do you find is the most rewarding part about being a musician?
I think the best part of being an artist is performing. A close second would be writing a song that I am really proud of, or even just a lyric that I’m so excited about. But with performing comes this intense high that I don’t think I’ve ever been able to replicate. It’s like the mixed feelings of confidence with adrenaline, being so comfortable on stage and winning an audience over is just the greatest joy for me as an artist.
And what is the most frustrating part?
Self promotion!! Ugh today it is so hard to get your music out there. It is so fun to be a part of the creative process but then I just want to give it to the world and let them either love it or hate it, but it's so hard to get it out there in such an oversaturated world. I am trying to find ways to make this fun, but it always feels like a part of the job I don’t love to do.
And what is the best piece of advice you have received as a musician?
If you are doing it for the streams or the recognition, it will always be an unfulfilling experience. The finish line in the music industry is constantly moving, just when you accomplish something there's always further to go, with people who are there already. Enjoy the process truly and find joy there, otherwise the art becomes a burden which is something I never want.
Kelsey Kindall's new single 'Whiplash' is available to stream now. Check it out in the player below.