New Zealand electropop artist and producer Frau Knotz (Lauren Nottingham) has released her third single + video ‘Cellular’; an icy and ethereal synth pop offering, reflecting on the grasp our phones have on our everyday lives.
Here’s the blurb with more:
In stark contrast to her previous two singles, ‘Cellular’ is a drumless track that sees Frau Knotz at the piano, shapeshifting between electronic experimentation and acoustic texture. With ex London-based producer Sam Johnson at Rhythm Ace Studio and mastering engineer Chris Chetland at Kog Studios, she has created a haunting production that solely uses piano and analog bass as a foundation to highlight her vocal performance with new purity and detail. Drawing inspiration from the basslines of Mick Karn from British 80s new wave band ‘Japan’ and the eerie dystopia of the Blade Runner soundtrack, ‘Cellular’ renders an evocative soundscape.
Frau Knotz’s prickly introspections divulge some of her most vulnerable lyrics to date. The second verse draws you in, almost literally with nothing but a whisper; “there’s a world out there, it lies beneath my thumbs” followed by a sudden pang of the piano with a grandiose declaration; “we are all icons on a plastic screen”. Lauren explains “After watching the Netflix documentary ‘The Social Dilemma’, I advised my friends on social media that I was going to delete my accounts in 1 week and gave them my cell phone number and email address. Then I completely deleted my Facebook and Instagram for the next 18 months. This song was written during that 18 month hiatus over one Easter weekend; 4 uninterrupted days spent at the piano.”
Previous singles ‘Supernova’ (2022) and ‘Runway of Reality’ (2023) have charted on the Radio Control 99.4FM Top 10, featured on Most FM’s Making Tracks & been playlisted on several community radio stations, with videos premiered on Juice TV & MTV Upload and her second video hitting 1.1k views on YouTube. Her debut headline show during New Zealand Music Month this year drew a crowd of 100 people to The King’s Theatre in Stratford, a tiny town 40 minutes from New Plymouth city. She has just returned from the Wellington Jazz Festival as a featured guest with the Other Futures Big Band.
Completing the triptych of music videos for her first three singles, Frau Knotz collaborated again with videographer Ben D’Ath (Drax Project) for a music video featuring Frau Knotz in a metallic silver bodysuit dancing a bespoke routine choreographed by 15 year-old Taranaki dance prodigy Mizaan Turner. “Mizaan and I were involved in a charity fundraiser called ‘Dancing For Hope’, a local ‘Dancing with the Stars’ show where 12 Taranaki ‘celebrities’ are paired with dancers to create a routine to a New Zealand song of their choice. The show raised funds for Mike King’s I Am Hope charity, along with the Taranaki Retreat” explains Lauren. “Mizaan has created the most beautiful contemporary dance to ‘Cellular’. It’s been very rewarding working with such a talented young person and to collaborate with a dancer for the first time. I’ve loved watching how Mizaan works with Cellular’s lyrics, rhythm and melody, internalising the music to craft our dance.”
With an upcoming 7-track EP to be released early 2024, Frau Knotz invites you on a sonic odyssey as she unveils her unique, retro-futuristic sound and is fast growing as a force to be reckoned with. Make sure you’re following Frau Knotz and stay tuned!
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