The “darkwave duchess” of Awful Records, an otherwise rap crew from Atlanta, Abra is a singer and songwriter who makes shadowy, mostly slow R&B that deviates from the slicker sounds of the genre’s commercial artists.
Raised in London, she moved to the States when she was eight and felt like a misfit – a situation that inspired her to learn to play guitar and write. She later connected with Awful’s Father, who remixed her track “Needsumbody.” Its video was uploaded in September 2014. The following year, as a full-fledged Awful artist, she released an EP, Blq Velvet, and quickly followed it with an album, Rose.
Abra’s infectious and polished sound mixes her huge vocal talent with sharp, beautifully intelligent beats, and is ultra-eclectic in its influences; she listens to everything from Wonderland-cover babe Mariah Carey, to various, gloriously analogue 80s synthpop stars.
When it comes to her creative process she’s resolutely DIY. “I record myself, I produce myself and I’ve just started mastering myself,” she explains.
Then there are those creepy videos like “U KNO” that are full of abyss-eyed, Lynchian weirdness which show Abra knows how to perfect the holistic, audio-visual package that, rightly or wrongly, artists need to be able to foster in this social media epoch to stay relevant.
“I like darkness: the weird shit. I don’t like romantic-comedies as I think they give you weird expectations of real life,” she says, confirming what we already know: that she’s a million miles away from the dreary conventionality of myriad other nu-R&B beauties.
This event is presented by Digital in Berlin. Check out our Facebook page to win tickets.
Kometenmelodien w/ ABRA
Thursday, 10th March 2016 | 20:00 CET
Kantine am Berghain | Am Wriezener Bahnhof | 10243 Berlin/Friedrichshain