Anika a.k.a Annika Henderson (D/GB) is a hybrid artist, operating as a poet, composer, musician, DJ and director. She interweaves dub, post-punk, and psychedelic, with shadows of dnb and the political, with a strong emphasis on the voice.
Her breakthrough came in 2010 with the release of the cult-hit, experimental LP, Anika (Stones Throw /Invada), which she recorded with Geoff Barrow and band Beak> in Bristol. She has since collaborated with a number of renowned artists such as: Tricky, Jim Jarmusch, Clark, Gudrun Gut (Malaria!), Solistenensemble Kaleidoskop (‘Desertshore’), Michael Rother (Neu!), Shackleton, performance artist Melanie Jame Wolf and more. She also provided the distinct voice to Rainer Kohlberger’s “It Has to Be Lived Once and Dreamed Twice,” which premiered at the Berlinale 2019.
Alongside, she formed the experimental-psych-rock band Exploded View in Mexico City, in 2015, releasing two LPs and an EP on Sacred Bones. She also spent time in Tehran, Iran on music resid ence, half-performing live within rigid restrictions and composing the soundscape for Philipp Geist’s live light projection on the Azadi Tower. In 2021 she released her long-awaited second solo album, ‘Change’, which was nominated for VIA 2022 Best Album. This was closely followed by an experimental live album, Eat Liquid, released this spring and recorded live at the Zeiss Planetarium in Berlin.
On Wednesday, 30.8.2023, Anika will present her new commission work »Lost Voices« at the Pop-Kultur Festival at Kulturbrauerei Berlin.
1. I think about quitting music all the time but some weird event occurs and draws me back in.
2. I used to want to be a documentary journalist. The world confuses / intrigues me, so does human behaviour.
3. Currently oxygen is free.
1. What is the biggest inspiration for your music?
Trying to digest feelings / reality that i don’t understand and there is no other place to work through them or society doesn’t allow honesty.
Trapped emotions /truths are like tigers living in your soul, eating it little by little, like tasty bits of liver.
Music is a great platform for truth.
2. How and when did you get into making music?
Music was something i did in private. As a very shy person, making music and playing in front of people was never really something I had intended on doing. It was bad enough at Christmas or in the school choir. Then at some point I met Geoff (Barrow), who also wasn’t so interested in the form of money driven industry that is showcased and presented as the norm. So, we made an anti-record and it felt nice to express things I couldn’t in real life. Since then, I have met more weirdos, also exploring and we have learnt together, showed each other our findings, like valleys we always wanted to share, views, secret spots in nature. Come see this.
3. What are 5 of your favourite albums of all time?
Dusty Springfield – Dusty…Definitely
Journey in Satchidananda Alice Coltrane
Bob Dylan – Greatest Hits
PJ Harvey – Is this desire?
Billy Holiday – Greatest Hits (including the less popular ones, with rougher texts and more truths)
Björk – Debut
6 is my favourite number.
4. What do you associate with Berlin?
Where do I go next?
5. What’s your favourite place in your town?
6. If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
Hang out by the sea.
7. What was the last record/music you bought or listen?
8. Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Jim Jarmusch again
9. What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?
This weird jam in Switzerland with Jandek, Julian Sartorius and Pete Swanson. That was somehow magical and other worldly.
10. How important is technology to your creative process?
I wish I didn’t have to use it but I do. The side-effects worry me but as an artist, I want to stay engaged and keep testing the limits of reality and the human body, which is the same goal as technology I suppose.
11. What we can expect from your »Lost Voices« performance at this years Pop-Kultur Festival?
‘Lost voices’ is a very special piece, involving bass master Sally Whitton of Plattenbau and Aude Langlois, a noise/sound explorer and artist. “Breathe, Question” – Together we are looking to give a platform to the lost voices in music and wider society. Loosely based on the ‘Change’ album, the piece breaks apart the narratives, using new instrumentation, bringing the message to the forefront, intertwining new voices from other continents, with similar echoes of our own experiences. There is more to bring us together than to divide us. Come join us. Join the revolution.