Foto-© Jonathan Kise
Marie Ulven, besser bekannt unter ihrem Künsterlinnennamen girl in red, veröffentlicht am 30.04. ihr Debütalbum If I Could Make It Go Quiet. Nach einigen EP’s und Singles, die die Norwegerin erst über Soundcloud und später auch auf den gängigen Streamingdiensten veröffentlichte, erscheint jetzt das erste Album der 22 Jährigen. Während sie die meisten Songs auf dem Album selbst geschrieben hat, bekam sie bei einer der bereits vorab erschienenen Singles die Unterstützung von niemand geringerem als FINNEAS, dem Bruder und Songwriter der siebenfachen Grammy-Gewinnerin Billie Eilish. Mit uns sprach sie unter anderem darüber, mit welche/r Künster*in sie in Zukunft noch zusammenarbeiten möchte, wie sie zum Musik machen gekommen ist und was Katy Perry mit einem ihrer Songs zu tun hat.
Hello Marie! How are you feeling today?
I don’t really know how I’m feeling today, I’m just in a weird mood! Today is a weird day (laughs).
Your debut album If I Could Make It Go Quiet will be released on April 30th, how exited are you?
I’m so stoked! April 30th couldn’t come any sooner, I’m so excited for it to come, I’m just waiting every single day now.
The last year has been kind of a rollercoaster for all of us, how did you experience 2020 and what effect did the year have on the album process?
I mean, 2020 was a rollercoaster, definitely! The beginning of it wasn’t really good for me, but then I got a dog and then everything got along better. Then I’ve been just making music really, I think 2020 has fully effected the way the album process ended up going, because I was in a studio the entire year, instead of being on tour. So that really defined how it ended up sounding.
How did you get into music in the first place?
I think I just wanted to make music. At first I really wanted to do guitar, but no one gave me a guitar, because I tend to love things for a very short amount of time and then I would’ve ended up having a lot of gear, that I wouldn’t be using. So nobody wanted to give me a guitar, but then eventually my grandpa gave me one and, well, they were all right, because I didn’t start with it right away (laughs).
But in 2013 I watched this really cool movie, called The Perks of Being a Wallflower, that kind of was a catalyst for me to want to get into music.
Years ago you started releasing your music on Soundcloud, how did you grow as a person and also as a musician between the Soundcloud days and now?
I’m a new person! (Laughs) I feel like it’s really hard to say how I grew, because when I started putting out music on Soundcloud, I lived at home with my mom and went to high school. Now I have traveled the world, I moved out, I have my own place now. I would say I’ve grown a lot, on all levels.
Your music and also you as a singer went viral almost over night, how did you deal with the attention you suddenly got?
I mean, I don’t really feel like I’ve gone viral over night. For me things just where progressing in a great speed, so to me it hasn’t been too crazy. I’m still here in Norway, living my best life, with all of my friends, I got some new friends, so I feel pretty grounded, I feel really chill (laughs).
With this kind of fame, there also comes the duty of being a role model, do you sometimes feel pressured into that role and does it stress you out?
I doesn’t really stress me out, because I don’t really feel that kind of pressure to be a role model. Because if you think about it, literally anyone could get “famous” nowadays, your TikTok can go viral and then suddenly people know you. I feel like people don’t expect as much of role model behavior nowadays. I just want to be a good person, I just want to continue to be a good person, if there was any pressure at all, I think it’s to not be a douchebag, I just feel the pressure to be a good person, like everyone else should feel the pressure to be a good person.
Is there any way you try to be an idol on social media?
No I don’t really think so. On social media, again, I just try to be a good person. Social Media to me is really strange, I have a very weird relationship with it, so I kinda try to figure out who I am on social media. It’s such a weird place (laughs).
On your new album you experimented with a lot of genres, what was most challenging about that?
There wasn’t anything challenging directly about trying out new things, because I naturally gravitate to doing those new things, because I need to do those to feel excited about my music. What was challenging was making the album, that’s hard man (laughs)! It just takes a lot out of you, so I would say that the whole process of making music is kind of hard sometimes. But, you know, I made it, I did it, I finished it and now I put two lines under it and now it’s done! Luckily (laughs)!
Do you feel any pressure, because it’s your debut album, or does it not feel any different to the EP’s you released?
No it is definitely more pressure now, because it is my debut album. But I also feel very happy with the music and I feel really proud of what I’ve done, so at the end of the day I was just trying to music I could make in the studio. I didn’t really feel any pressure in the studio, I was just doing my thing.
Especially in the song Serotonin which you worked on with FINNEAS, you did step out of your previous musical territory, what impact did FINNEAS have on this track?
I mean he put this really cool synth in there and he has suggested to keep this gibberish part. I had this gibberish part right before the first chorus, I wanted to write some new lyrics there, but he was like “Yo, why don’t you just keep it in here?”, and I was like “Yo, that’s a good idea!”. It was such a random thing to do, but it was also so impulsive and such a powerful move, so we kept that in there. He did small bits and pieces here and there, but I had sort of the ground foundation for this track. It turned out to be this really dope and cool track.
FINNEAS already is a really cool person to collaborate with, but are there any other artists you wish to collaborate with someday?
Yeah I mean I want to collaborate with Taylor Swift!
That would be really cool!
I have a piano idea right now that I’m gonna record in may I think and I wanna get Taylor Swift on that shit, so lets see what’s going to happen!
I would absolutely love that, my fingers are crossed!
If not Taylor, I want to have Phoebe Bridgers or Billie Eilish (laughs)!
You said you emptied yourself out in this album, has making music a therapeutic effect on you?
I think making music is definitely therapeutic, because it keeps me away from being destructive or having a destructive mindset, so I would say making music is therapeutic in that sense.
The song You Stupid Bitch was inspired by a quote from the movie The Perks of Being a Wallflower, where else do you find your inspiration?
Wait no! No its not!
No? Oh my god!
That was just a funny line for a chorus, because I feel like I only call people I care about “Bitch”. I would never like truly be really mad at someone and call them a bitch, like a stranger or something. (Laughs) Not that I get into fights with random strangers, but I feel like I only say bitch in a kind of very loving way. That’s the sense in this song, its like “I love you”, kind of. But it’s definitely about someone not seeing their worth.
Where did I get the Perks of Being a Wallflower part from I’m asking myself right now.
I mean I do talk about that movie a lot, because it was a really important movie for me, but I can’t remember You Stupid Bitch being set in relation with it.
I think I read it in the press text though. It says “There is a line from this movie I love The Perks of Being a Wallflower – “we accept the love that we think we deserve”.” That’s what I was talking about.
Oooh, yes, you’re right! The sense in the song is kind of the same as in the quote, the person doesn’t know, that she is picking all the wrong people to love. Kind of like Sam in the movie. That makes sense, sorry!
The song . – is it called dot?
It doesn’t really have a name, it’s like a period or a full stop. It has that, because it marks an ending.
That song is like the song from Katy Perry, the one that got away, that’s kind of the sense made in that song. Like not speaking up about your feelings and then you see that person with someone else and you ask yourself what could’ve been.
It Would Feel Like This is an instrumental and is directly linked to the title If I Could Make It Go Quiet, is it easier sometimes, to let the music speak for you instead of the lyrics?
I made that outro a long time ago, but it has been sticking with me for so long, I think I made it like two years ago. But I still love it, so in one extend yes, but I also love singing in my sons. So I don’t really know, I need to figure that out, I really love instrumentals and I love words also. I’ve actually been into instrumental music a lot lately, so we’ll see what happens on the new record (laughs).
Maybe it will be without music completely, we will see!
Yeah, it’s gonna be a house album (laughs).
If you could recommend three songs to our readers right now, which ones would it be?
I would recommend Time by Khruangbin, Lost In Yesterday by Tame Impala, that’s a good one! And maybe ilomilo by Billie Eilish, I love that song!
What is your personal favorite song from your upcoming album?
No! Don’t put me on a spot like that (laughs). I love all of them, so I can’t pick a favorite, I put so much effort into all of the songs, so it’s definitely just the entire album, it really means a lot to me!
Like a mother that doesn’t have a favorite child!
Yes! I actually asked my mother the other day, if she loves me and my sister the exact same and she said yes. And I thought that this is so strange, because we’re two different people, but she loves us the exact same way (laughs).
What are your further plans for this year, after the album is released?
I just want to keep talking about the album, maybe I can to some fun shit. We’ll see what happens with the restrictions and stuff. I just want to keep making music, I want to see my fans, I don’t know if that’s going to happen. But I want to keep talking about the record and give it the attention it deserves.
Alright, that was my last question already! Thank you so much for this interview, it was really much fun! Have a good day Marie!
Thank you for talking to me, I hope you have a good day and you look twice when you cross the street, don’t die, take care!
Right back at you!
Thank you, I also don’t want to die!
Yeah no, please don’t!
Not before the album comes out!