words: Brittany Long
Pop-rock powerhouse Alex Carpi is back with new music to delight the senses.
The Melbourne singer-songwriter has just dropped her new single Veins and we wanna ‘feel it running through our veins.’ Girl’s very own Brittany Long caught up with her to get the inside on the new single, discuss where her musical journey first began and who she believes is the best up and coming artist of 2019!
Congratulations on launching your new single Veins! Let’s start with the inspiration behind veins, specifically with the song itself; where did the song title and the song lyrics come from?
“The lyrics kind of came to me at random, I was driving (where I come up with a lot of my material) and the first line “I want to know where you are all the time/ Just to avoid you and know where to hide” came into my head. I was thinking about how sometimes you can hate someone, but still have this weird obsession. Which then turned into me writing the rest of the lyrics around a ‘love-hate relationship’ story. It reminded me a lot of high school in a way, like quite immature but also all-consuming, how everything at that age is heightened.”
Tell me about the initial inspiration for Veins. Has the initial vision you had for your song remained throughout the writing process or has it changed/ been shaped?
“It has been shaped as it’s come together. I didn’t sit down to write it with a specific vision in mind, it just happened and the way I felt about the lyrics shaped the rest. It was very angsty, moody, but also playful. I wanted to keep that vibe true through the rest of the process.”
Let’s go right back to the start. I always love hearing about the inspiration behind the journey for an artist. Can you tell me what that’s been like for you? Was your passion for music and singing developed as a kid or?
“I’ve loved music since forever. I started piano lessons at 5, and followed through with it until the end of primary school. I used to sing ALL THE TIME, and was writing my own songs from a very young age, but I wasn’t very good at singing them. It was only in high school that I actually started training my voice and it matured. After a couple of years of voice lessons I loved it even more, and could sing my own songs well, and this lead to me wanting to do it more and more.”
If music has been a part of your life since you were a child tell me about your fondest or earliest memory of music?
“I remember dancing around with my grandma from quite young, to old rock n roll music, Elvis, and then Cher and Reba McEntire. We would dance and sing all the time, and I remember the first albums I ever heard in the car with mum were Shania Twain’s Greatest Hits and Alanis Morisette’s Jagged Little Pill. It was a very good foundation for a small Alex.”
What sort of music did you listen to growing up?
“Pretty much as above, that stuff was in the formative years, and then when I got a bit older it was mainstream, what was on the radio. I remember listening to the So Fresh albums in the car on my Walkman. They were the good ol’ days. By the time I was 13 I had discovered the alternative rock scene and got super into that, also getting into metal bands like Slipknot, Bullet For My Valentine, Escape the Fate. Then I kind of plateaued as I grew up and now I just like everything.”
Has the type of music you listened to influenced what you yourself play now?
“Definitely. I was surrounded by certain types of music from a very young age. You think you can put a 4 year old in front of Alanis and Cher every day and she’s not gonna start writing songs after a few years? I’m so glad I got to listen to all different types of music growing up, I think because I was so exposed to it, that’s why I started making it myself.
Which musicians inspire you?
Pretty much all the ones I’ve mentioned. Cher, the OG, has had a 6-decade career. That’s incredible. I saw Alanis live recently and she absolutely killed it, she’s such a great songwriter. Also Fleetwood Mac, ABBA (both who made their best material after divorcing their band-mates), they’re just respectable. On the younger side of things, Taylor Swift inspires me from a songwriting point of view, you can’t deny she has an incredible talent. I’m also inspired by Brendon Urie (Panic! At The Disco) because of his voice and presence, I’ve been a fan of them for 11 years now.”
What’s the songwriting process like for you? Is it usually the lyrics or the music that comes first?
“The lyrics definitely come first, then I sit down at my keyboard and track chords, and figure out exactly how I want it to sound.”
Where do you find the inspiration for your music in general?
“Just from things around me. Sometimes I’ll say a phrase and think “that would make a good lyric,” so I write it down and come back to it later. Sometimes it’s a feeling, or a feeling I remember from a long time ago. The city, and other people.”
What’s the experience of being onstage like for you?
“I LOVE being on stage. It’s so much fun. I get a bit nervous, but I love being in front of people and sharing my music with the world. It’s such an adrenaline rush and I want to do it over and over again.”
Who in your opinion is the Best up and coming artist of 2019?
“This is a really hard question. I think Tones and I has had the best 2019 of any Australian artist – that’s undeniable. I’m not a massive fan per se’, but I can appreciate her talent, and her unique sound. Her second ever release has just hung out at #1 for months, breaking records. Pretty good for a 19-year old. She’s a very lucky artist.”
How have things changed for you since the release of your first original ‘I Don’t Want To Love You Anymore?’
“I’m taking music a lot more seriously now. With IDWTLYA, I just released it as a bit of fun and I didn’t put heaps of work into the release. With Veins, I have pulled out all the stops and I will continue to do so with future music. I know that if I’m doing this I want to do it properly, and we put a lot of work into my songs so I want them to have the best life when they’re out in the world. I’m also now gigging more and I have a lot more connections within the industry.”
Is there anyone you’d love to collaborate with in the future?
“So many people, and this is such a hard question because I never know whether to name people who are within my reach or just name like, Stevie Nicks. I would love to do some collabs in the future though, and I’m sure they’ll happen organically over time as I work with more people in the industry.”
Why do you believe people resonate with your music?
“I think I write about stuff that people can relate to. We’ve all had love/hate relationships, and been with people who we’re not sure if they’re good for us. My other songs talk about how women are portrayed in the media; how you feel when everything is up against you and you just want to be underwater; about connecting with someone new and getting that giddy feeling. I think they’re diverse songs and I think I can get my message across through lyrics.”
How would you describe your sound?
“I think it’s pop/ rock, with nouveau grunge and funk influences throughout.”
Are there any measures you take to try and prevent creative inhibition?
“I don’t think so. I kind of just do music. I don’t try and put too much pressure on it. If I want to write a song and nothing’s coming to me, I’ll pretend I’m writing a song that already exists. It’s all about getting out of your own head.”
Whats next for Alex Carpi? Can fans expect an album and a tour in the future?
“No album plans as of yet, I’m trying to gig as much as possible over the next few months, and I think 2020 will be a big year for me… that’s all I’ll say.”
If you could play onstage or tour with anyone dead or alive who would you choose and why?
“Probably Brendon Urie or The 1975. I think our styles would vibe well and the energy at their shows is so crazy, I’d love to be a part of that (not just as an audience member).”
If you had the opportunity to chat to your idol sidestage but could only ask them one question, what would you ask and who would it be? *not limited to music
“I would ask Stevie Nicks how much coke they actually did in the 70’s. Like, they say it was a ridiculous amount, and she actually has a hole in her nose from it, I just think I need to put a number on that, because it’s unfathomable.”
What else are you passionate about aside from music?
“I love film and I film weddings and promotional material in my spare time. I love seeing movies, and I’m also passionate about good food but I’m not the best at cooking it.”
Tell me about an achievement you’re most proud of?
“At the moment, probably releasing Veins and premiering it on Joy FM. I’m really proud of the track and of all the work I put in to make this release the best it could be, and I got to have my first On Air experience as well!”
Favourite activity to do in your free time?
“Singing or watching Netflix.”
Tell me something no one knows about you
“Everyone knows everything about me. I’m such an open book it’s ridiculous. I should probably start keeping more things to myself if anything!”
Get to know Alex Carpi with Fan Favourites:
Movie: I honestly don’t know
CD vs Vinyl: Depends what record, but probably vinyl.
Album: Revelator by the Tedeschi Trucks Band
Biggest inspiration: Probably also Cher
Dream place to tour: America
Dream festival to play: Coachella
Best dance floor groove number: Man I Feel Like A Woman, or Sandstorm
A Tattoo you’d like to get: None
Quote to live by: I have two: “Never do anything you’d be ashamed of if everyone found out”, and “It is ignorant to deny talent when blinded by personal opinion”. Made them both up in high school and they’ve stayed with me.
Disney Film: The Lion King (original)
Keep up to date with Alex Carpi here: