We start off the week with a beautiful Guest Mix courtesy of BLANCAh, who is fresh off the release of her single “After Rain“ on Renaissance, including a Øostil & Heîk remixes. “After Rain” is part of her second studio album entitled Arias Of Sky which was released also on Renaissance this past May.
There are only a few artists currently working in electronic music to match BLANCAh’s talent and versatility. Whether it’s DJing, singing live (often during her own sets) or producing, her creative cup constantly overflows, which is why she has become one of South America’s breakout stars with a CV that includes some of the world’s most renowned platforms. From releases on Steyoyoke, Movement, and Lost On You; touring the globe or holding residencies at two of the world’s most famous clubs (Brazil’s Warung and D-Edge), BLANCAh is proof-positive cream always rises.
Dance isn’t a genre that’s embraced the album format as a rule, but with Arias Of Sky BLANCAh has undoubtedly delivered a body of music that doesn’t so much challenge the status quo as rip-up the rule book. It’s a showcase that deftly balances melodic electronica with her club roots as she explains,
“Arias is a true labour of love that took months to produce. I consciously shifted my sound to create an emotive soundscape that people will hopefully listen and dance to in equal measure.” – BLANCAh
As BLANCAh delivers this week’s Guest Mix, she also took the time to speak to us in a virtual sit-down to explore the journey that has brought the release of Arias Of Sky. So… press play, and read the exclusive interview below while enjoying the ethereal soundscapes of this latest Guest Mix by BLANCAh.
Hi! Thank you for taking the time to chat with us, and for the mix. Where in the world are you now?
Thank you for the opportunity. Is my pleasure to talk with you guys. Right now, I’m in Brazil, South of Brazil to be precise, in the beautiful city of Florianópolis.
Is this where you have been spending lockdown in recent months?
Yes, my last gig was in March when I went to Munich (Germany) to play at Harry Klein Club. After that, I came back to Brazil and we started the quarantine. Since that, I only leave my place to go to the supermarket and basic stuff.
How has that been for you? I know it hasn’t been an easy time for most, but are there any positives you’ve was taken from this experience?
Honestly, my daily life hasn’t changed too much, I’ve always been a very homely person. My studio is at my place, so during the week, I continue to have the same routine. The weekends affected me because it was the time when I travelled to work. I’ve missed that. This whole drastic situation has taught me not to create so many expectations. I try to make short-term plans with real possibilities of execution so that I don’t create frustration. I try to control anxiety with positive thoughts and exercising gratitude. I look around and see the people I love healthy, I have a home to shelter and I still have food in the fridge. So, I’m thankful and keep the faith day after day, hoping that everything will pass soon.
Brazil, your country, is a heavily hit country by the virus. How are you taking it?
I usually say that we have two major viruses in Brazil. One is the COVID, the other is Bolsonaro, the most irresponsible president in our history. We are under the leadership of an irresponsible, lying and corrupt government that denies the seriousness of the facts. It all makes me very uneasy. I do what I can to keep myself safe and encourage my friends to do the same.
Let’s talk about music now and this beautiful mix you’re sending us. Firstly, let me say congratulations on your album, Arias Of Sky! How long was that in the works?
Thank you so much. I’m so happy and proud of my new album. It was two years dedicating my best energy on it. I composed slowly respecting the flow of my mood and inspiration.
How has the response been to the album from your peers?
– I just read beautiful words and heard beautiful comments about the album. Of course, this makes me happy and flattered, but for me, the most important thing is the process itself. The personal process of creative immersion, seeing the album taking shape, and finally seeing it released on such important label as Renaissance. It is a personal achievement that has nothing to do with others. As an artist, I always compose for myself. To remedy this need for self-expression. What comes after that is always a mystery.
I read that its dance floors you’ve played on that have inspired the album. Can you name some of these? What inspired the music on the album?
Yes. My first experiences at international festivals opened my perception as an artist. I envisioned a new world quite different from what I was used to, locked in clubs, and always absorbing the same things. Rainbow Serpent (Australia) and Fusion Festival (Germany) played a key role during my creative process for Arias Os Sky. This kind of festival preaches a collective conscience, ecological conscience, political conscience, and spiritual elevation, allied to art and culture, and in my point of view, the music which better represents this whole philosophy is a kind of low bpm, what now we are calling Organic House. When I came back home I was very motivated to get out of my comfort zone and experiment in the studio.
“Although I completed the album the job was far from done, I decided to offer it in 3 different formats, the original versions, extended mixes and a continuous mix as if it were a DJ set in its own right. With the latter I even created three exclusive ‘INTERLUDES’ to help with the transitions and flow. It’s a very personal journey that represents my strange and wonderful take on the world. I hope people enjoy it.” – BLANCAh
Thanks again for the mix you gifted us today. Where did you put it together and what was your mood through it?
I have received many interesting songs. I decided to play some promos in this mix. You will notice that it is a strong set, like the ones I usually play on the dance floors. With techno and melodic influences.
Is this mix a representation of what fans can hear you play live these days? if we had events that is! (laughs)
Yes, definitely! (laughs)
Any standout tracks you want to mention in particular?
– I finish the set with a song by Mercedes Sosa. An Argentine singer that I love and who has always sung the beauty of her people, her land and social struggles. In the lyrics, she sings something like this: “Thanks for the life that has given me so much”. It’s about gratitude. Is just beautiful.
I see you have a beautiful dog! Have you always been a dog person?
Oh my god YESS!!!! I just LOVE my dog. His name is Willie, he is so sweet.
Since I was a child I lived surrounded by animals. My grandmother had 11 dogs, 8 cats, birds, chickens, and ducks. I was born with a love for all animals.
Do you practice any other art that isn’t DJing and producing music?
Sometimes I draw and paint. I have a degree in visual arts. I have already taught many painting classes. Music has always gone hand in hand with my passion for Visual Arts.
Which country has the best food?
Lebanon. Lebanese food is the best!
Is there a country you’d still love to visit someday?
Thank you for the chat and the mix!
My pleasure, thank you!
BLANCAh’s single “After Rain” is out now on Renaissance. Buy/Stream it HERE
BLANCAh’s ‘Arias Of Sky’ album is available to buy and stream HERE