LÂLKA is too cool for this world, in a good way

Images by Kathryn Farmer
Words by Ruby Staley

The young, experimental artist with something to say.

LÂLKA is fed up being with silenced. Specifically, she’s fed up with her image and voice being suppressed by the patriarchy.

“When people tell me I can’t do something, I go psycho to prove them wrong,” said LÂLKA. “As a teenager, I had adults telling me that I didn’t have what it takes to be a performer – look at me now.”

She wants to rebel and to exceed any expectations, stereotypes and prejudices placed on her.

And with the release of her latest single, ‘Go Psycho’, she does just that.

With a unique electro-pop sound, characterised by her use of exaggerated autotune and sassy lyrics, LÂLKA is truly in a league of her own making. By combining elements of pop, hip-hop and electronic music, she continues to dispel artistry and gender stereotypes – ensuring she does it her way.

“I just make what I feel,” says the Brisbane-based artist.

Although she loves and admires the “boss attitudes” of outspoken female artists like M.I.A., the young performer doesn’t directly channel inspiration from other artists for her work.

Rather, she credits the emotionality of her music to her own personal experiences as a young, female POC.

“As a woman of colour, I’ve been conditioned to be apologetic about my existence and it’s something that I’m working to unlearn,” said LÂLKA. “I know that there’s always ways I can grow as a person and artist”.

‘Go Psycho’ projects this sentiment, loud and clear with lyrics like, “Get your hands off my body” and “I’m not going down without a fight”.

The bold pop single is accompanied by a creative music video that showcases the many facets of LÂLKA’s never-ending talent. Translating the aggressively unapologetic sentiment of the tune, the video depicts the artist singing and dancing from a variety of experimental shots and frames. Utilising visual and audio distortion and DIY props and costuming, the video not only compliments the song – but elevates it.

When commenting on her multihyphenate role as the video’s star, but also the director and editor, she notes that the whole experience was positively freeing.

“Being director and editor made it so much easier to translate what I envisioned in my mind onto the screen,” said LÂLKA.

But she didn’t do it all on her own, working alongside an all-female creative team to develop the video.

On working with females in the industry, LÂLKA noted that she “admires women who are supportive of other women and who aren’t afraid to work hard.”

With such a distinct, polarising look and unapologetic sound, LÂLKA is no stranger to criticism. In fact, she welcomes it.

“I’m not afraid to work hard and upskill,” says the young artist. “I find that a proactive approach is the best way to combat any feelings of self-doubt.”

LÂLKA proves her determination against all odds and when the industry tries to backs her into a corner, she pushes back.

“I’m the type of person who likes to achieve and prove the doubters wrong,” said LÂLKA. “I got feedback from gatekeepers that my music is super cool but they’re not sure if the audience is ready for it yet. Whatever, my time will come.”

Since her debut single, ‘Dare You To Love Me’, in 2017 LÂLKA has had a busy few years.

Just last year, she opened for Charli XCX in Brisbane at her intimate ‘1999’ party.

Aside from fun underground sets with global popstars, LÂLKA has recently added FOMO, Bigsound and Laneway to her performance repertoire. In terms of performing large scale, festival shows, she says that she tries to just have a bit of fun with it.

“I find that when I commit to having fun on stage, the energy transfers to the audience and the crowd has fun too,” said LÂLKA. “I try to abandon all forms of self-consciousness and just enjoy it – I’m not too cool for that.”

Listen to ‘Go Psycho’ on Spotify, or watch the video clip on Youtube.

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