Every weekday, DIY’s new music know-it-all Neu brings you one essential new release to get obsessed with. Today’s Neu Pick comes from Emilie & Ogden.
Not your standard two-person pairing, Emilie & Ogden is in fact the moniker of Emilie Khan. Ogden, on the other hand, is the type of harp she plays. Sharing the limelight with her instrument is par for the course for Khan, though - so intertwined is her delicate voice with the lush, stringed backing.
Take ‘Go Home’, the video for which is premiering below as today’s Neu Pick. Khan’s voice dips and dives amongst the unmistakably swaying melodies of her harp, lending a beautifully haunting curtain of sound to the track. Paired with its bleak, almost Coen Brothers-esque video, there’s a darkness to ‘Go Home’ that adds to Emilie & Ogden’s intrigue. Swathed in mystery and a blacker-than-black waltz, it’s a stripped-back songwriting style like few others.
We had a quick natter with Khan (below) to peer behind the curtain of ‘Go Home’ and Emilie & Ogden’s debut album ‘10 000’, which is out now on Secret City Records. You can catch Emilie & Ogden on the following UK dates early next year:
01 Leeds, Brudenell Social Club Games Room
02 Manchester, Castle Hotel
03 London, The Waiting Room
04 Bristol, The Louisiana
You’re sharing the limelight with Ogden, your harp - how much of an influence does that have on how you write?
When I’m writing the harp does influence which keys or rhythms I tend to gravitate toward. I probably won’t ever write anything super upbeat or dancey, just because I’m always sitting and sort of attached to the instrument, but that’s also one of the things I like about playing it.
Are there any other big influences, musical or otherwise, on your music?
I’m influenced by life, personal experiences and my reflexions in them.
The video for ‘Go Home’ has quite a sinister atmosphere to it, how did the ideas for that come about?
The song is quite dark and we needed a video that echoed that. We originally wanted to do a super simple performance video, but then Kevin came up with the motel concept and found this creepy old place. I think it reflects the utter loneliness and despair in the song, with a touch of revenge at the end.
Your debut album ’10 000’ was released back in October - how’s the reaction been so far?
It’s felt good so far. Since releasing the album I’ve gotten to tour internationally and meet all sorts of people who were touched by the songs, so that’s a good sign.
You’ve just wrapped up a few European shows - how does it feel to take your music across the world?
It was pretty surreal at times to get to play music for people across the ocean - I was often asking myself, “Is this my life?”
Obviously Ogden is your main collaborator, but are there any others you’d love to team up with on music?
Right now I’m working on new songs alone and with my band. I can think of a couple of big names I’d like to work with, but who I would be too embarrassed to mention, haha.