LA Rochelle becomes frank on his new track “All Away”
Opening with thoughts of denial with her new therapeutic single, LA Rochelle with “All Away”. Crooning to a heavy synth production filled with top-notch basslines and powerful breaks, the artist speaks candidly of the heartbreak that brought her world to pieces, touching everything from loss to heartbreak. Having experienced trauma throughout his life, the artist takes the opportunity to illustrate his mourning with emotion and lyricism.
Speaking on the new single, the artist said: “‘All Away’ is about the different ways we distract ourselves from realizing that we are in denial. We party, we drink, we smoke… and for What to do Beyond the temporary feeling of bliss, is it not a question of escaping and becoming numb in the face of a component of reality that we cannot bear to face? “
After taking his first steps into the creative world writing for Tricky and recording vocals for the Scratch Massive duo, the London-based artist is ready to break onto the stage with his own sound and immerse himself in his music. . Ready to start a new chapter with his sound, we caught up with the artist talking about the meaning of his name, being so outspoken in his lyrics and everything he has stored for us.
Check out the interview below now …
Hi LA Rochelle! How are you? How has this last year been for you?
I am really well, thank you. Especially now that the world is slowly reopening! I feel that my zest for life has returned and it is such a joy to be able to DJ again, listen to loud music in clubs, dance and kiss friends again.
With everything that happened last year, has your creativity been affected?
It was extremely difficult, on so many levels, and I think it was the same for everyone. As a musician and DJ, losing all your livelihood was scary. I had no choice but to go back and live with my parents for a while. I know I am extremely lucky that I even had this option. Especially since they live in Portugal (my mother is Portuguese). I flew just before the borders closed, thinking I would be abroad for a few weeks and ended up staying there for almost a year! Life was strange, isolated with no one around, working on music, running errands, facing friends… and like everyone else, mostly trying not to lose our sanity, which some days felt like a lot.
How did you first come to music, what sparked your interest?
One day my older brother played a nirvana VHS tape at home and I remember seeing Kurt Cobain playing guitar and singing with all his heart and I was like “THIS IS IT!” That’s what I want to do. ”From that point on I started taking guitar lessons and quickly asked all my friends who were playing outside to stay home and play. guitar. Nothing like the feeling of playing with the amp to the max and bathing in that sound. I didn’t really like learning other people’s songs so I started writing my own songs quite quickly and I learned to play drums, bass, piano, cello and then I got into production. First rock music, then singer-songwriter stuff… Teenager, i also got interested in classical music, and avant garde and serialist stuff like steve reich & karlheinz stockhausen. it was awesome, i started writing for orchestras and doing tons of crazy records.
Where does the name LA Rochelle come from?
He has a pretty dark history. The name was born out of a tragedy as I fled from my apartment in Paris where my best friend took the life of my other best friend…
Both were my roommates and hid their relationship, driven into secrecy due to the fear of a partner of judgment who would come to reveal his sexuality to his family.
It was such an extreme shock when this happened that I felt the urge to go: AWAY. So I took a train to La Rochelle, my hometown where my parents lived. When I got there I just felt like it wasn’t far enough yet and I needed to go further. I always dreamed of LA: the sun, the palm trees… I thought I was going to go there and make music on my own. So I opened google flight and started looking for how I could get to Los Angeles from La Rochelle, and ta-da the name popped up right there, between ‘LA’ and ‘Rochelle’. I didn’t even go there after all. Escape; This is LA Rochelle. This ideal place where everything is going well.
You are based in London which is a cultural melting pot, do you think living here has had an impact on your sound?
Completely. London has given me so much, especially after what happened to me in Paris. The city welcomed me and I love it with all my heart for what it has shown me.
I used to be pretty snobby in my musical tastes, ignoring pop music. Moving here was like a rebirth: going out to so many clubs and hearing all this amazing music. Whether it’s 90s R&B, Garage or House and Techno… London let me embrace it all and showed me that you CAN love everything at once.
And now that you’ve just released your latest single “All Away”, explain the production process to us?
This song was originally written on electric guitar with nothing but my voice over it. I loved his rawness and his vulnerability in the lyrics. It underscored how caught everyone is in the same loop as me. One in which the ferocity of work can only be counterbalanced by the extremes of harsh rage. I liked it but it was just a demo and I needed it to get more horny. Always more ! So I replaced the guitar with a synthesizer. I love doing that and seeing how far I can take a song sonically. Then just before the covid hit, I flew to Budapest to work with my producer friend ‘Anatu’. We sat on the floor of a small Airbnb and Anatu started having fun with the main synth and that was it. Later that night we were in clubs together and couldn’t stop listening to our export of ‘ALL AWAY’. Looking like weirdos with our phones glued to our ears dancing to our own music. There I knew this was the excitement I was looking for and we had figured out how the song was meant to sound.
He’s got a pretty big story, what was it like tapping into those emotions?
It was hard. For a long time after what happened, everything I did was so dark and put me in the darkest place. There were times when I couldn’t work at all, sessions that I had to cut short because it was just too painful for me. It was a long process of trusting and as Adele says in ‘Hello’ “time is supposed to heal for you”. That and LA Rochelle which has become my therapy.
What do you want people to take away from your music?
We all know that already – and I don’t claim to be able to give life lessons – but maybe a little reminder that life is short and that you have to tell people that you love them, and give them a hug. .
On the music side, for all the important moments in my life, the good and the bad, there was a song that was there with me as a friend, and that meant so much. This is what I am trying to do for myself now, and this is what I hope I can do for others. Create songs that make you feel strong when life is tough. Songs that make you feel good and make you feel like you have a friend with you anytime, anywhere.
You’re also set to release an EP soon, what can we expect? In what state of mind did you approach this project
There are three EPs in total and the first one is coming out soon! It’s a whole mending trilogy. I recorded it, in real time, following my journey through the 5 stages of mourning. From anger to denial, to bargaining, to depression and finally to acceptance. Feeling that I have finally overcome the grieving process, I am so excited now to present the first chapter of the trilogy: DENIAL & ANGER.
Who are your inspirations?
The people around me. It sounds arty-farty but it’s so true. The biggest inspiration for me are the conversations I have with my friends and everyone I meet. Someone will come up to me, ask for a lighter, we’ll start chatting, they’ll say something and all of a sudden I’ll stop them like “wait, wait, wait that’s a song right there”. I still have my voice memo on. Capture atmospheres, conversations, moments that stay with me. On the music side, I’m really inspired by R&B, Pop and Techno. It’s hard to choose a particular artist because I listen to so much music and I never stand still with it. I guess lately I’ve been listening a lot to Charli XCX, Summer Walker, Khalid, The Weeknd as well as Troye Sivan, Lauv, Pop Smoke and Britney -ALWAYS Britney.
What’s next for you, what are you most excited for?
Can’t wait to share more songs with the world! I’m really proud of the 3 EPs I have to come and the songs in them are some of my favorites EVER. I can’t wait to start touring again, to meet people, to dance with them… And also to do more soundtracks for fashion shows, which I did and really enjoy. Finally, starting this week and moving forward, every Tuesday on TikTok, I’ll be posting a Techno Remix (#TechnoTuesday) of some of the best classic pop and r & b records. Pure feel good music, so I’m really excited for that too, it’s gonna be a fun trip!