Get To Know: PHOEBE AXA
This week our Get To Know artist is PHOEBE ΔΧΔ, she talks Jack Antonoff, 80s music and all-nighters…
PHOEBE ΔΧΔ was discovered at an open-mic at Latitude Festival when she wowed the crowds with her 80s-inspired songs. The 19-year-old is from east London and grew up listening to Kate Bush and Fleetwood Mac as well as cultural music from her Greek Cypriot heritage.
Her first EP, Wisdom Teeth, Pt. 1, is an exploration of identity which she wrote over the last four years, and Josh from You Me At Six is a fan (he gave her a shoutout on Radio 1’s Future Artists show). Phoebe's keen to get back out on stage and we can’t wait to see the big energy at her gigs: “I can promise it will be epic.”
1. For those who don’t know about you and your music, tell us a little bit about who you are and where you’re from…
Hi, I'm PHOEBE ∆X∆... I'm a singer, writer and producer from East London. I've been making music at home since I was 11. My favourite thing about doing this is definitely being on stage and delivering creative projects in person.
2. Who/what inspired you to start a career in music?
I think it was a product of my environment really. I've always been creatively encouraged and I took an interest in how music is made quite early on. I had a CD collection that I would read through all the booklets of, looking at credits and trying to gain an understanding of the musical world. I would listen to Gabriella Cilmi's first album on repeat and analyse it lyrically. But it was when 'Glorious' by Foxes came out that I became obsessed with production.
3. Who are your biggest musical influences?
I grew up listening to a lot of Kate Bush and Fleetwood Mac - my mum would play them around the house constantly so they'll always influence me in some way. I'm a big Jack Antonoff fan - I love the epic and emotive sound to his records, you can always tell when he is on a track. I also love Daughter - especially on 'Not To Disappear', I always return to that record when I feel creatively lost.
4. Tell us about the writing and recording process of your new release…
Wisdom Teeth, Pt. 1 is essentially a collection of songs I wrote over my teen years, so the process is dotted over four years now. It's an exploration of identity. As a whole it's a metaphor for growing up and the challenges that come with that; it's about living inside your head, ruminating, questioning and seeking reassurance without response.
'Young Blood' has been through so many phases and I learnt so much production-wise heading back into old projects and transferring the knowledge I've collected since then. I made everything at home and with the childhood to adulthood themes running through it felt only fitting to see them through this way. 'Hurts a Little Less' was a song I wrote, recorded and produced in an all-nighter. Ended up going to bed at 7am haha. I wanted to explore the duality of relationships and mental health through the themes of connection, feeling lost and found and the physical and metaphysical.
5. What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
I have to say it was probably when Josh from You Me At Six was on Jack Saunders' Radio 1 Future Artists show and he picked 'Hurts a Little Less' as one of his top three songs from new artists. Mind was blown. I also always have to count moments I've had onstage - I get the most fulfilling feeling.
6. Who would you be your dream collaboration and why?
There are honestly too many. But I think I'll say Jack Antonoff. Because genius. I'd love to produce something epic with him and use all those synthesisers...
7. Have you met anyone and been totally starstruck?
I wish I could say yes to this but I haven't seen that day yet. If I met Taylor Swift maybe.
8. If you could only listen to one song on repeat for the rest of time what would it be and why?
'Ribs' by Lorde. Been listening to it on repeat since it came out so may as well keep that going.
9. What’s on your playlists that people wouldn’t expect?
I don't think people would expect me to listen to any hip-hop but I love a bit of Wu-Tang. I also sometimes listen to film or TV soundtracks. Anything with ambience. Love Ólafur Arnalds.
10. What can we expect from your live shows?
ENERGY. A whole new set packed with goodness and fun? I can promise it will be epic.
11. Have you got any fun livestreams/online events planned for this year? / When can we see you live?
We are moving back in person now. YES. Been struggling to contain my excitement. You can find me at Omeara London on June 24th, Liverpool Sound City and Hit The North festivals. Maybe more too... he he.