London artist and producer Aziya’s new EP is a lot of fun. FFO longtime Dork faves spill tab, Deb Never and Wallice, ‘Lonely Castles’ is packed full of punchy hits with the kind of charm that has already seen the newcomer catch the attention of Grimes and Florence + The Machine.
‘Lonely Castles’ is “a title that I have saved on my notes for three years that sums up the intention behind each song within the EP,” she explains. “I love romanticising very real situations into almost gothic stories, and I feel like real life in 2023 is the darkest fairytale. “Lonely castles” is a metaphor for the isolation we feel, within ourselves in a world where we have an overwhelming amount of connection at the tip of our fingers. Yet there is a vast level of loneliness and darkness in the 21st century; this EP is me trying to come to grips with it.”
Here, Aziya talks us through the release track by track.
I wrote this song about the isolation you feel in the seconds, minutes, hours, days, even that go by when the person you want leaves you on read. When I got in the studio the next day, there was this guitar effect called ‘Mars retrograde’, which not only sounded cool but actually perfectly summed up the feeling of that night – waiting around for a response did feel like this space type vacuum of nothingness and time felt none existent. Melodramatic? Sure. But true!
I always want my fans to feel as though when they listen to my songs or come to my gigs, they are in a safe space and feel accepted. Just like a chain is made up of individual pieces linked together, I wanted to write a song that highlighted to my fans they are a part of my world.
This song started when I found a sample by one of my favourite producers, wondagurl. I feel as though, intrinsically, her name really struck a very apparent frustration inside me of not feeling good enough at times to do music. What the music industry requires from an artist at times is beyond human capability; it requires a fictional hero, a wunda girl. I wrote this song to remind myself and others that in these moments of feeling inadequate, who you are, what you do is more than good enough and worth persevering for.
I fear that love in 2023 does not exist. But for my own sanity, accepting that there is a lesson to be learnt from every interest that enters into my life, so enjoy the moment for what it is. The song is written with the hope that everyone deserves that right person, and amongst the hookups and being matched by AI and algorithms, they are out there. A diary into Gen Z love.
Aziya’s EP ‘Lonely Castles’ is out now.