London based newcomer Issey Cross revealed last January the single debut WHO, a vibrant left-pop offering which cements the 20-year-old as a sure-fire one to watch this year. Inside a pandemic dimension and hard times, thankfully newcomer Issey Cross is here to offer us good music. Meanwhile I feel that energy blend of R&B, dark sounds and vibrant pop with 2000s vibes, Issey introduces herself to the world as the queen of the heartbreak anthem.
“Who” is about all those love lost souls to pull themselves up, meanwhile the second stunning single, released few days go, ‘Boys makes promises’ arrives with stellar video directed by Frederick Paginton and features electronic sounds and distorted vocal harmonies, soft piano arpeggios used alongside string samples, and a booming bass track that all work together to make a subversive pop anthem. Speaking on the release, Issey Cross states:
“I TOLD YOU AT THE START IT DIDN’T HAVE TO END THIS WAY.”
A razor sharp, sky-reaching alt-pop cut showcasing Issey Cross as a sure-fire one to watch this year.
We sincerely hope that Issey Cross inspires the newest music generation with her uniqueness to describe the truth about her feelings through her lyrics.
Tell us a little bit about your first approach with music.
My dad had bought me a guitar for my 12th or 13 birthday and I started writing songs from then. My family had always loved music and listened to so many different styles and genres so I guess that’s what inspired me to start writing my own songs.
Meanwhile listening to your single ‘Who’ I wondered, which decades of music influenced you the most and why?
I grew up listening to a lot of 90s and early 2000s music which I think has been a big influence. I used to listen to a lot of Destiny’s Child, Mariah Carey, Fugees, Alicia Keys, Rihanna, Miguel, TLC etc… but nowadays my favorite artists are people like Kehlani, The Weekend, Ella Mai, Mahalia and Coltrane.
Name your favorite artists who inspire you constantly.
I think one of my biggest inspirations is Lorde as I’ve been listening to her since I was about 13 and when I really started getting into writing songs. her lyrics are always so good and you can always feel the emotion in her voice.
I love Kehlani for her melodies and the production of the songs. But growing up I used to listen to loads of Amy Winehouse and I think she’s inspired me a lot too for her lyrics.
What story are you trying to convey with ‘Who’? What makes it unique?
I wrote boys make promises about someone who I cared about who would keep say to me they would do things and get my hopes up and then keep letting me down. I love the way how the chorus is so explosive and almost shouting out the words to express the pain and anger. Even though the song is directed to a boy breaking my trust, I want the song to feel universal as to the listeners they could relate to the lyrics with any relationship of someone who has promised the world to them and broken it.
What is the message behind ‘Who’ that you want your listeners to understand?
That you can never really know everything about anyone and be careful who you trust!
When you’re not recording and performing, what other hobbies make you tick?
I love cooking, drawing, seeing friends and going to lots of music events and recently I’ve really got into walking due to lockdown!
What particular song you have written resonates with you the most?
I think the song that means the most to me is probably a song called nicotine that I wrote when I first moved to London. The lyrics sum up how I was feeling back then being in a long-distance relationship with my boyfriend and feeling lonely in the big city wondering if he was missing me like I was missing him.
How you do approach making music? What’s your process?
Whether its writing alone or in a session with others, I tend to listen to the beat first and then come up with melodies that pop into my head. I like to record the melodies down and then think about the concept and the lyrics from there. Sometimes after listening back to the melodies, you notice certain words that you sing that map out the lyrics of the song.
How the pandemic situation affected your career and how did you overcome this challenge?
I really miss being in the studio. Nothing beats writing in the room with people and vibing off each other to make the song! The pandemic has definitely helped me start producing more at home and writing alone which I’ve really enjoyed.