I wanted to re-post an interview with the very special Karin Park for ‘Schon! magazine’.
‘Schon! magazine’ have been a fan of Swedish star Karin Park since she burst onto the music scene, featuring her refined style and striking appearance in issue 19 and we have been following her ever-evolving music career since. With Karin’s new, dramatic and stimulatingly fresh material erupting into 2014, we are now extremely proud to announce Karin’s newest single, “Shine” and its release on 24th February, which Schon! will be exclusively posting a few days prior to its official release. Schon! explains why we still love Karin Park.
Karin’s album “Highwire Poetry” explores new waves of experimental pop with music that practically grabs you by the scruff and physically shakes you, demanding that you listen. Her unique sound breaks all conventions of traditional and mundane music. With model height and killer looks Karin Park is a woman who beckons your attention before she even starts singing.
The mysterious pop star speaks exclusively with Schon! magazine as we delve deep into her beautiful and chaotic mind to find out what inspired her new single “Shine” and what she has planned for the future.
Your style of music has been described in various ways. Everyone seems to have a new way of labelling your sound. How would you personally explain the sound of “Shine”?
To me the song is very personal and it’s more about the feeling the song gives me rather than the sound and what other artists it sounds like. “Shine” is more laid back and warm. To me it’s quite erotic in a way.
What inspired you for your album “Highwire Poetry”?
On “Highwire Poetry” I came from an emotional chaos. When that is said, in me there is always emotional chaos to an extent. But I can hear almost panic in my voice on some of the songs when I listen back now. The urgency to set things straight in my mind and understand all of it is very present on this record. I’d like to think I’m better at living with the demons now.
Your music seems to get more and more experimental, and ventures into different musical territories. How did you go about writing “Highwire Poetry”?
I explore music like I explore life. I don’t want to stay in one place for too long. But I know what I like and am quite specific about it, so I know where I’m heading. Sometimes though, I get taken by surprise and things take a bit of a new direction. I’m not a genre, I’m a living and breathing artist. So I just went ahead and wrote what I felt like, but musically I focused a lot on the challenge of making melodies over raw beats and chords (that sounded quite disconnected on their own) but together with the melody and lyrics it all became a simple pop song.
You grew up in the woods of Dalarna. In “Shine” there is a mention of being “lost in the forest”- how autobiographical is the song?
Being “lost in the forest” is a metaphor for feeling confused with no sense of direction. Metaphors like that come easier when you have the woods right outside your house, ha-ha. But no matter where we live we are all a bit lost in the forest some times.
With “Shine” there is a juxtaposition of comforting lyrics and slightly more unsettling noises, carefully selected disturbing sounds. How do you want your audience to react with the song?
A song needs both beauty and ugliness to be complete in my opinion. To my ears, there is very little disturbing sounds in this song. It all depends what your point of reference are. But yes, there is always more than one side to my songs. How do I want people to react? When people tell me they’ve made love to my music, I always feel extra happy! Could this be that kind of song maybe?
There is no doubt you have model looks and height. Do you think your unique look has helped your career and opened up new opportunities to you?
Honestly, I think I could have made it easier for myself by trying to look a bit more like Lana Del Rey. Some people, especially macho men, find me a little intimidating and are not used to women who look like they could eat them for breakfast.
But it makes me end up working with relaxed people who have good confidence and the strength to not let me fuck around. I like that. And I like my look. That in itself makes me more successful.
You’ve smashed onto the music scene winning awards and have had amazing collaborations already. Is there someone else you’d like to collaborate with in the future?
It all comes down to chemistry. I have learned that sometimes you meet people that you thought nothing of and you just hit a nerve. And some of your biggest heroes turn out to be just impossible to be around.
How do you cope with the pressure to keep improving and achieving in your music career?
I feel more pressure from the media as a woman to keep myself looking young and beautiful than from my audience and myself to keep improving my career. Improving my music and to learn new things is my biggest joy and I want to do that all the time.
To try to stay young and beautiful is boring and seems like a complete waste of time. It should really be irrelevant to my musical career, but of course it’s not so I try to eat some ‘Spirulina’ products and have a facial scrub occasionally.
You have already achieved a lot in your career, so what are your goals for the future? What can we expect from you next?
I really just want to have fun and make stuff happen! I’ve done some pretty weird career moves, such as performing my songs on ice instruments on the top of a Norwegian mountain in the middle of the night. I’ve made music videos in my living room, jammed with people from all over the world and played support for David Bowie. But there is still a lot to explore and a lot of fun to be had.
Words by Loo Loo Rose Featuring Karin Park
Originally published in ‘Schon! Magazine’