Grimes is playing a free show at the Paramount tonight, which by itself is fantastic news, but this performance, hosted by Swedish vodka Absolut, also promises a masquerade ball atmosphere complete with hand-painted masks, cocktail demos by mixologist Keith Waldbauer, and large-scale interactive visual art designed by Los Angeles artist Bert Rodriguez. On her own, Grimes (the musical alias of Montreal’s Claire Boucher) is an innovative producer of forward-leaning electro-pop, pairing mystical synths and well-dressed loops with her sparkly falsetto, a tonic that has been distilled into a fine serum most evident on her amazing 2012 LP Visions.
I was able to get in touch with Grimes via email in the days leading up to the show. She unfortunately chose not to respond to the cocktail-related questions I asked, (which is sad, because I hope to one day buy her a drink), but she was nice enough to let us know a little bit about her upcoming album, rap, and what we should be listening to. I also got a few questions answered by Bert Rodriguez, who shed a little light on the show/exhibition tonight, which starts at 9 p.m. RSVP-ing looks closed, but I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of sweet-talking your way at least into the lobby, or charming someone out of their ticket out front with a abnormally large sum of money. Good luck!
I heard you’re working on your new album. How far along in the process are you? Are you working with anyone? I’m not currently working with anyone, it’s always been kind of a solo thing. I’m considering some stuff but I don’t know, it would have to be with a rapper I guess because that’s the only thing I can’t really do myself. I’m maybe half way done I would guess. I’m going to keep churning out creative stuff for a bit then I’ll just slam out good vocal takes for everything and polish production.
Have you ever considered making a rap album or producing someone else’s? I’ve made a few rap songs but no one will ever hear them, and it’s better for everyone that way. Well, I made this environmentalist rap actually that I might release because I’ve never worked so hard on lyrics in my life and its over a sick Majical Cloudz sample and then it has a pop punk chorus so it seems like a crime not to. But I’d really like to produce something one day. It would be my dream to produce a song for CL, GD, Angel Haze, Yolandi Visser, or Andre 3000.
By all accounts (for example, Youtube interviews), you have great (and diverse) taste in music. Who should we be listening to right now? Majical Cloudz, Paramore, Angel Haze, Lorde.
Bert Rodriguez says:
Tell us about the collaboration with Grimes. I’m going to be performing a piece called “What a Disco Ball Feels Like” during the last song of her set. Grimes is an artist herself too, I discovered, so she’s a very interesting musician to be paired with Absolut.
Tell us what we can expect tonight. There is a lot of interaction and participatory artwork where guests are invited to be artists themselves. There will be a white large canvas where guests can apply these cool stick-on black letters, creating layers upon layers of statements that they want to express. I use text a lot in my artwork so you’ll see that theme throughout the night.