Kristine Elezaj is Bringing Back "Good Pop"
Tue, 26 Oct 2010 09:33:59
Kristine Elezaj Videos
"I don't have any doubts that this is what I'm supposed to do," exclaims Kristine Elezaj about her musical career.
That's why the title of her brand new album, No Questions Remain, is so appropriate. Elezaj makes no ifs, ands or butts about it—she's meant to make music, and she does a damn good job of it on the record.
Seamlessly sliding from Euro-style production into anthemic dance pop that's so big it can't be anything but America, Elezaj may very well become the darling of every dance floor. Just spin "Warpath" or "Boy Toy" for proof. With a tangible delivery and seductively real aesthetic, she's got it going on…
Kristine Elezaj sat down with ARTISTdirect.com editor and Dolor author Rick Florino for an exclusive interview about No Questions Remain, her affinity for Mad Max and so much more.
How do you typically approach making music?
There are a lot of things that I wanted to fuse together for the album. It's like the "best-of" what I love [Laughs]. It's what I thought music was missing. I feel like everything's going in the same lane, and I just wanted to bring back good pop!
Did you have a vision for the entire album from the get-go, or did it all come together in the studio?
It came together in the studio. The first song I wrote was a bit like closing an old chapter. I wanted to record new stuff and get all of that energy out. There were a couple of songs that I recorded at the very beginning. Then, I took a break for a couple of weeks. After that, I went in and banged out the rest of the record. For the whole middle, I was just experimenting and having fun. One of the last songs that we did was "Do or Die." It's funny because, to me, "Let Me Know" and "Do or Die" were like bookends for the album. "Let Me Know" was the closing of a bad chapter, and "Do or Die" was the opening of a door to a whole new career and energy. It's about going forward and building more of my dream and what I said I was going to do. I'm just having fun on everything in between [Laughs].
You went into this wanting to blend those different genres.
Definitely! Even with the ballads, because of my performance, I wanted a lot of the stuff to be dance-y and pop. However, it also shows people that I have some vocal ability. I didn't want to simply put one ballad on there; I wanted to make the album as well-rounded as I could.
What's the story behind "Siren Assassin"?
My friend Rhapsody James is a choreographer who does this dance show called Siren Assassins. She's been doing it for a couple of years, and the first show I saw was in New York. It's based around twelve strong female dancers. They all have alter egos. Basically, they're assassins but their stories are told through dance. I saw the show, and the concept was amazing. Rhapsody's choreography is amazing. I was listening to the track, and it sounded like Marilyn Manson with a pop twist. We started throwing out ideas for the song and I thought of her show. I basically wrote a theme song inspired by what I saw in the choreography. Now it actually is the theme song for the show. Rhapsody is making me one of the characters—like a celebrity siren assassin. I was so inspired by what she does, and I wanted to connect myself with it.
What's up with "Light Years?"
Stacie Orrico wrote it with Brandon Beal. I did a little writing on it, but I connected with it the most because at the time I heard it I was going through a little something with a boy [Laughs]. That song just fit the situation that was happening in my life to a "T" perfectly. It's one of my favorite songs on the album. It's just raw, and you hear more emotion in it than anything.
If you were to compare No Questions Remain to a movie or a combination of movies, what would you compare it to?
That's such an awesome question! I got really inspired by Native Americans for "Warpath," and it turned into this whole Mad Max concept for me. Everybody says I have this alter ego when I'm writing. If it had to be a movie, it'd be like Mad Max [Laughs]. That's like my other persona. "Warpath" started it, and we began infusing it into the rest of the album. There's this other twist on it. I'd have to throw Moulin Rouge in there too. The video we just shot for "Warpath" has a combination between Mad Max and Moulin Rouge in terms of themes, if you could even picture those two things together [Laughs].
Have you heard Kristine yet?