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Artist Of The Week // MATILDA COLE

Allowing her vulnerable side to shine through, Matilda Cole’s honest songwriting style will melt your heart.

Matilda Cole

Up-and-coming indie songstress Matilda Cole isn’t the first female indie musician to be achingly honest and raw about her emotions, but it still doesn’t make the intensity of her emotions any less affecting and heart-touching. Opening up on Camden, she offers a catharsis as she works through the confusion that often accompanies family conflicts. It’s tricky working out how to co-exist with situations that are deeply personal yet beyond control, and Camden does a stellar job of exploring the nuanced and complex feelings surrounding the issue.

Explaining more about her inspiration behind it, Matilda shares:

‘camden’ is really just a song about my parents splitting up. a lot changed for me in a year, and watching their relationship deteriorate followed by selling the family home was harder for me to handle than i thought it would be. ‘camden’ really sets the tone for the ep, which is a collection of songs about the reality of growing up.

Feeling softened by her bruising sound and candid lyricism, we spoke with her further about her fondest memories from that period, and what she has in-store for listeners with her upcoming EP.

What’s a motto you live by?

it’s kind of obvious, but when i’m really struggling with anxiety i remember something that my dad told me that ‘worrying about the plane crashing doesn’t keep it in the air’, and that really helps me let go of things out of my control.

If your sound had a colour, what colour would it be?

for the last ep, the colour was definitely soft pink. for this one, it’s a bit darker – more of a purpley tone, paired with blacks and reds. i think because the music is more personal and slightly rawer, the colours got a bit less bright. doesn’t mean it’s depressing though!

If you could set Camden to a TV show or movie, what would it be the soundtrack for?

hmmm. maybe ‘We Are Who We Are’? it’s one of my favourite shows (directed by Luca Guadagnino who directed ‘Call Me By Your Name’), i think thematically it would fit quite well, although the soundtrack is pretty much perfect as it is. or maybe ‘Lost in Translation’. i love that film.

What’s your fondest memory based around Camden?

i think just the security that comes with being a child, i really associate that with camden and london. i was really really young when we lived there, so i don’t remember too much, but the whole time period is covered in this warm hazy glow in my mind.

How did your upbringing influence you as a musician?

i was lucky enough to go to a very small, buddhist primary school. they focused more on compassion and self expression than the typical british school, and directly encouraged us to explore our creativity and be ourselves. i think that environment let me pour all my strength into being creative, and being given that space to do that really really stuck with me. even now i use the tools they taught us about art and poetry when i’m making music.

What’s been the best part of creating your EP?

last october i went to copenhagen. it was my first ever writing trip, and my first time going abroad completely by myself. it was a bit terrifying and also a bit amazing, and i ended up writing two of the songs for this ep. showing myself that i could do that was such a good feeling, and those two songs set the tone for how i wanted the rest of them to sound and feel. so that was probably my favourite bit.

If you had to sum up your EP with one line from it, which line would you choose?

it’s a bit emo, but maybe ‘taste the blood in my mouth, and then i wash it down’. it kind of just means feel the fear and do it anyway. that’s my whole thing these days!

And finally, slightly cliché but what does music mean to you?

music is my way of understanding the world. it puts everything into context for me, both the music i listen to and the music i write.