Permanent Rotation: LYZZA – The Vinyl Factory

In Permanent Rotation, producers, DJs and musicians dig deeper into the albums that inspired them.

Amsterdam-based Brazilian-born DJ and producer LYZZA is gearing up for the release of her 10-track alt-pop mixtape Mosquito on Big Dada next month. Combining dark hyperpop, reggaeton and prismatic, sharp club tunes, it’s a thrill ride and the most complete expression yet of the 23-year-old’s talent for catchy electronica and shifted.

LYZZA recalls cycling to school in Amsterdam as her early teen Nicki Minaj Pink Friday: Novel Reloaded album exploding in his headphones.

“It gave me so much energy in the morning,” she laughs, faking the British accent of Martha Zolanski, one of Minaj’s cast characters throughout the record. (Martha is the mother of Roman, Minaj’s most well-known alter ego, an outspoken homosexual who figures prominently).

“It’s like, you’re 13, you go to high school. You obviously hate him,” LYZZA reflects. school as a black immigrant in a country like the Netherlands, you don’t feel like you can constantly show who you really are, you know?”

Minaj’s rebellious alter ego, Roman, resonated with LYZZA’s own pent-up frustrations of feeling like an outsider at school. “That’s what I needed before I went to school, someone who’s just crazy and says, ‘No, I don’t want that. Roman hates you all!

Arrived in April 2012, Roman reloaded was a revelation in both style and format for LYZZA, aka Lysa da Silva, who names Minaj as one of the first and most prominent artists in rap and hip-hop to successfully integrate the EDM and electroclash sounds in their music. “You could technically say Kid Cudi did this with David Guetta,” she observes. [on 2009’s ‘Memories’]. “But Kid Cudi’s raps are very different from the way Nicki rapped, I feel like she brought punch and gangsta to the genre. Looking back, I think a lot of people co-opted the sound of the mixtape but at the time, beats like that [in rap] were not normal.

It’s a “psychotic record,” says LYZZA, singling out “Stupid Hoe” for its subverted rap beats, in which “the hi-hat is basically a flute, so it gives you that beat, but it’s a tone.”

“I have this hot take that ‘Stupid Hoe’ kicked off a lot of underground club music sounds on Soundcloud at the time,” she says. “I feel like that sound and a lot of those crazy broken beats were very resonant. And when I found my community on SoundCloud [she names Ariel Zetina, Jasmine Infiniti and LSDXOXO among them]there were a lot of these elements in their work as well.

Maybe it was intentional or not, but the format of LYZZA’s upcoming mixtape, Mosquitoloosely follows the structure of Roman reloadedwhich is loaded in rap and loaded in EDM.

The Mosquito split isn’t quite as obvious, but the second half of the album definitely kicks things into high gear with tracks like “Eraser” with Crystal Castle-esque arpeggiator synths, and “Mind to Lips” over patterns. electroclash drums and a cold futurewave. provisions.

“As an artist, I think you can definitely question yourself and wonder if maybe you’re shooting yourself in the foot by choosing to have certain angles in your sound,” says LYZZA. “Roman reloaded taught me that you don’t have to censor yourself, there aren’t many rules in the artistic creation of music.

For someone like LYZZA, who makes club music that crosses and integrates many different styles, there was something heartwarming in seeing an artist who refused to stick to one genre, especially an artist who looked like her. .

“There’s always been this idea that black artists should kind of stick to their stuff, which for a lot of people was hip-hop and R&B or soul, you know, that very boxed-in thought. Seeing a black woman get into pop showed me that we don’t really have to worry about what kind of music we make as long as we have fun, explore sounds, and push ourselves.

In this spirit, Mosquito takes its name from an unusual muse. “Because I’m black and I make alternative music, I identify with the disruptive and intrusive nature of a mosquito,” says LYZZA, adding that the fearlessness that characterizes Minaj’s work is “definitely something that I really wanted to explore”.

This boldness is palpable throughout the mixtape, both in style and in execution. “Listening to my old work, I can hear the potential, but listening to this, I feel like it’s not potential, it’s there,” LYZZA says. “It’s a really nice feeling.”

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