Nordic art pop artist, musician and producer IRENE is excited to kickstart 2020 with her brand new single ‘SKYBOUND’, as premiered by Wonderland, as the grand finale of her four-piece introduction. More orchestral than her previous works, ‘Skybound’ holds a cinematic, spacious, stark and massive universe. Written and pre-produced by IRENE in Finland, and finally produced into its final form with Danish American composer Noah Rosanes in Copenhagen, it boasts a dramatic and dangerous flair, like a Scandinavian James Bond theme song, but IRENE’s sense of romance is lightyears deeper – it reveals its sophisticated nature for those who pay attention to lyrics.
In IRENE’s books, ‘Skybound’ is an intergalactic love story, “about the connection between two people. There’s so much more to this universe than meets the eye. Our imagination is our direct channel to wherever. If you have a cosmic tie with someone, you’ll sense each other’s presence. It doesn’t matter if you’re thousand kilometers or already a lifetime away. You are connected”.
As the productional layers of ‘Skybound’ start building up, IRENE’s long and seasoned background in classical music starts to sound obvious. Dry, hard-hitting beats weave a cosmic pulse while the piano and cello arrangements echo in the dark, alongside additional strings provided by Live Johansson (LiveStrings), who has previously worked with the likes of Kanye West, MØ, Eminem, and Lucas Graham, and IRENE’s expressive and bendy voice paints unpredictable, floaty melodies – ones that seem to defy both gravity and time.
The cinematic visuals for ‘Skybound’ is a collaboration between IRENE and award-winning director and filmmaker Juha Ilmari Laine, which is built around an impromptu dance that was never part of the original plans. “We ended up keeping it because it felt awfully naked. That’s exactly how you feel after revealing something true and intimate about yourself”, IRENE confesses, before adding that, “to me, ‘Skybound’ is about cosmic tie – you can’t see it but you definitely sense it. A magnetic pull between two entities in this universe. It’s quantum physics and extremely romantic at the same time, as the visuals reveal”.
Revered for her raw, sensual, and emotionally naked Nordic pop tunes, IRENE’s otherworldly songwriting is similar to Kate Bush, still, her soundscapes gravitate more into the sensual Nordic pop-melancholia like Robyn’s. Nuanced and minimal, IRENE could easily be related to FKA Twigs, however, a deeper dive into her lyrics reveals a heavy focus on the unseen world: subconscious waters and the mystery of human experience. On the back of ‘Skybound’, IRENE is gearing up to reveal her full-length debut album titled SLOW BLOOM throughout 2020.
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