Soul music is finally starting to take form in Australia, particularly soul with a difference. Future soul has now been more popular than ever, and EMRSN a soul singer from Melbourne is creating a movement with his unique sound he dubs ‘soul trap.’ His vocals are hauntingly beautiful and his music is not only about the joys of love, but the pain staking truth of it.
We chat to EMRSN about his latest track ‘About Love,’ what we can expect from his mixtape TMRW and
What does 'About Love' mean to you?
It might sound a little negative, but the main focus of ‘About Love’ is discussing the idea of wasted relationships. Sometimes it seems like people tend to be in a relationship, just for the sake of not being alone, even if that relationship is an unhealthy one. I’ve seen these types of partnerships quite a few times (I’m pretty sure most people have) and it just amazes me how people’s insecurities can be so powerful. I feel it is important to talk about all aspects of life/relationships, which is why this song is a bit darker, but my upcoming free album ‘TMRW’ has a lot of tracks that are looking on the brighter side of things!
It's a good time for soul music with Soul Fest, how did you first get into it?
I completely have my mum to thank for being into soul. She was a big fan of jazz, blues, soul, gospel, funk and disco, so really, there was basically no way I was not going to be into those genres of music. It seemed like I was just naturally drawn to the music influenced by all those, like modern R&B, neo soul, hip-hop, house and garage.
'About Love' is a track off your upcoming mixtape 'TMRW' what can we expect from it and is there a release date yet?
My upcoming free album ‘TMRW’ will be on the similar vibe to “About Love”. I’m all about the future beats/vibes movement that is happening at the moment, so the album will have a fair amount of instances where I will be singing over my favourite “future” instrumentals. There are quite a number of sounds and genres incorporated into TMRW, but the way I would describe it is like ‘soulful trap’ and really ‘new wave funky house/garage’. TMRW doesn’t yet have a release date, but I’m confident that it will be available (for free) around the New Year.
I believe you've been working with M-Phaze and Cam Bluff, what was that like?
Really exciting! Cam Bluff is a mega talented guy, and I am so impressed with the beats he is making at the moment. I’ve been a big fan of M-Phazes for a long time now, and it has always been a goal of mine to work with him, so obviously, I am very pleased to get to do that now!
You're quite experimental, infusing different sounds, how did you find your sound?
Honestly, finding my sound was all completely organic. As I said before, I’m a fan of the original rhythm & blues, soul and funk, as well as 90’s R&B and house/garage/trap. Music is always evolving and I think the sounds that I am using and creating is the progression of the next generation of soul – something I am really excited to be a part of. Although the beats and sounds I work with can sometimes sound a little left of centre, reaching out of the ‘soul’ realm, the tracks always sound fresh, which adds to the noticeable influences that I have used in my vocal work. I’ve tried to incorporate as many vocal influences as I can in my sound, as I want people to know how much inspiration and admiration I have for so many great artists.
Favourite local soul artists?
From Melbourne, I’d have to say Hiatus Kaiyote, but there are a bunch of other artists I like such as Daniel Merriweather, Dru Chen, Francisco Tavares, Aaron Mendoza and Jason Heerah – plus I really like what Jordan Rakei is doing.
One thing I am really looking forward to is making connections with other similar artists from around Australia (and the world). After I released “About Love” I received quite a few emails from other musicians, really keen to link up. It’s going to be great, once TMRW is released, as I will have many more opportunities to look into collaborations and projects.
What stimulates your soul?
Real, intelligent, deep and friendly people. And of course, dope music!