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Nilufer Yanya: 'At the beginning of 2020, I didn't really feel like I had any creative ideas'

Mr. Nimbus | 03/09/2022

Nilüfer Yanya joins The Matt Wilkinson Show on Apple Music 1 for an International Women’s Day special, and discusses her brand-new album ‘PAINLESS’. She reflects on the co-writing experience and how this differed from her previous projects, shares the inspiration behind her track ‘Midnight Sun’ and reveals why touring gives her a “sense of purpose”.

Nilüfer Yanya Tells Apple Music About Her New Album ‘PAINLESS’…
It’s more like rock music, whatever that means. It’s a lot more like a band. It’s definitely a bit different, but I just prefer it. I didn’t really know what I was going to go for or what I was… I mean, I always think I had this idea in my head, but it’s not something I can actually put into words or kind of reproduce in a way…. But I did work a lot more like co-writing on this record so I think that’s definitely… It sounds maybe evolved because of that.

Nilüfer Yanya Tells Apple Music About Her Experience Of Co-Writing Songs For Her New Album…
I think it can be weird. It can be weird. For me it felt like a necessity this time around. I felt a bit creatively drained, I would say. At the beginning of 2020, I didn’t really feel like I had any creative ideas or any of that kind of desire. And it wasn’t until last year when me and Will started working on… I didn’t even know we were going to be working on the record. It was more just like we started writing together and everything came in place so naturally, it felt like a shame not to keep going with it.

Nilüfer Yanya Tells Apple Music About The Title Of Her Song ‘Midnight Sun’…
I think I came up with it. I was writing the lyrics and it just kind of appeared, I don’t know how. But then I Googled it and I found out there was a Twilight book. And then Will was like, “You can’t call the song ‘Midnight Sun’ if it was a Twilight book.” And I was like, “Yeah, that’s fine. I still can call it Midnight Sun. It’s still a good name.”

Nilüfer Yanya Tells Apple Music About The Themes Behind ‘Midnight Sun’…
I’m writing about feeling maybe trapped or maybe in your inner cycle and you keep going around the cycle and you feel like there’s no way out. And then in the pre-choruses I feel like I’m writing about protesting and people using their voice and people speaking up about things, but also people feeling like they’re not being heard by anyone and feeling like they can’t speak up about things. So it’s kind of like there’s a heaviness in there… The lyrics are trying to be hopeful, but then it’s also you feel like it’s almost a bit pointless sometimes. And then the chorus is a bit more romantic and poetic, that’s what I feel like. And it’s a bit more of an escape.

Nilüfer Yanya Tells Apple Music How Touring Gives Her “Clarity”…
You know what, it’s great. Like you realise that kind of sense of purpose. Sometimes when you’re writing or when you’re doing other stuff or especially like leading up to the album, you feel like all this random stuff you’re doing you’re like, “What is the…” You kind of forget what the point is, and then when you’re on stage, you’re like, “Oh yeah, this is why people will listen to my music. This is why I’m releasing the albums so people will come to the shows.” It all makes sense. Like lots of things make sense in that hour or so, these weird moments of clarity. And I mean, sometimes it’s not like that. Sometimes it feels like singing to a wall or something, there can just be nothing there. But sometimes it’s like you get these real, clear moments of clarity, and that’s probably my favourite thing.

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Written by Mr. Nimbus

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