From Zheani’s oft otherworldly, perhaps tough aesthetic, one that bleeds from her social media platforms by the way of tattoos, crossbows and fake blood, you’d expect the 27-year-old Queenslander to hold a demeanour dismissive or possibly intimidating. In actual fact, she’s quite the opposite. Over the phone, with a passion distinct of a musician who truly loves their art, she converses with the openness of a friend, explaining her mindset in often hyper-analytical ways that give access to the behind-the-scenes of her musical process.
Albeit a little tired she explains that she’s been up all night working on a post for a new release, “I’ve only had a one hour nap at 6:30, I don’t usually do all-nighters so my brain’s a little crispy.” But this is a testament to her work ethic as well as a process that is decidedly DIY, one that instead of encroaching on the quality of her releases, enhances them to a point of originality unrivalled by any other artist in the industry.
Most likely this comes from floating in a genreless universe somewhere between metal, screamo, trap, rap and pop, contributing to a discography that reflects someone thoughtful in their sound, “Sometimes I’m trying to create a manifestation spell”, she explains of her anomalous sugary sweet pop ballads like ‘Lava’ and ‘Lulu’, “that’s simply me trying to evoke a certain mind to kind of fight off the bad vibes.” Though this is the case, her heavier tracks like ‘Whore Of Babylon’ are what really define her, tracks that make space for her to really “rage out”.
It’s a Zheani we get to see briefly from ‘Dirtbike’ and ‘Skitz Cunt’ on her recent autobiographical Zheani Sparkes EP, but also in her latest release ‘Skinwalker’, a song about girls from Tumblr who “jack your entire fucking drip”.
With Zheani’s year almost at an end, one more track and a bunch of merch left to release, we got to pick the young artists mind on various matters from constructing context with music, to creating work before its time, to embodying the dark feminine archetype.