I’ve always believed that music should be somewhat terrifying. Whether it is similar to the frightening rage that is found in the likes of my beloved My Bloody Valentine or if it is done in a more gentle manner like The Long Wives; I want what I hear to scare me a little bit. I don’t know where this comes from, maybe from a young obsession with Nick Cave. His dark imagery in his lyrics is the same kind of genius that came from Poe’s pen. Troubled, dark and sinister. There’s another level to this, Marquis De Sade. The sexual perversion in is writing is uncomfortable but for the times he wrote it- it is nothing short of challenging. I have one of his books, but reading it on public transport means never holding the cover up so anyone can read the back of it. I want to hate myself for being in awe of his work, but I can’t. I just keep reading.
I should have written about Ela a few years ago when I first hear her music. I have bouts of being utterly lazy. I’ve not written in my notebook since July. Everything I had the intention of jotting down has gradually left my mind. I suppose it wasn’t important to start with. Ela Orleans is yet again another example as to why music from Scotland is astounding. From Shirley Manson to Bobby Gillespie; it is a place that just oozes talent from all over. Parts of England have certain sounds. The further North you go, the darker the sound. The better the sound, of course. However (with the exception of Glasvegas, The View and others) you can’t always tell with Scottish bands. That just proves how excellent they are. You already knew that didn’t you.
Ela Orleans reminds me of someone I admire- Alex Zhang Huntai aka Dirty Beaches. Seeing him live last year had a massive impact on me in ways I wasn’t aware of. Now when I go to shows I notice more than normal, I let it mean more than it used to. He has this powerful presence without even saying a word. His music on record is a pleasure to listen to. It’s a pleasure to listen to because it’s so different to anything I’ve ever listened to and I can’t pick up on what influences him apart from general life and the hunger to make music- that’s the same feeling I get when I listen to Ela.
Her voice resembles nothing like anything else I’ve ever heard. However she can convey torment in her voice like Billie Holiday did. Ela can rip right into the core of you with her voice, the words become hazy because the way she rings pierces through you. But then, on the other side of this, her voice can make you weep with how gorgeous it truly is. Maybe I’m feeling her music more because I’m ill (I’m losing my voice and I sound like a teenage boy today..it’s a good job I’m not a big talker) and I’m swaying towards how her music makes me feel emotionally. Sorry, I don’t know what my excuse is for the rest of the time.
Her music makes you want to pack up your belongings and move to a city where nobody knows you. Where nobody who claims to know you can bother you. Until you get the guts to do so, all you can do is sit and listen to her music and live briefly in the moment through it.
I so desperately want to write thousands and thousands of words telling you all about Ela and why you need to listen to her music, but I can’t. She is one of those singers who you don’t really need to say a word about. When you listen to her music, you immediately become drawn in and you know you are listening to something truly special. Writing this is taking me back to how I felt when I first heard her music- it happens every single time I listen to her music. You keep falling for her music. It is honestly like looking at the one you love and finding new reasons as to why you love them and remembering why you love them. Ela’s music is something that obviously goes behind these words I have typed, anyone can see that. She’s the kind of singer I wish I could be, but I cannot sing. That’s alright though. I’m more than happy to have a voice like Ela’s being projected into my ears and cleansing my soul.