Earlier this summer, The Aikiu's debut single, Just Can't Sleep, took up a good portion of my most dedicated listening time, and hell, it's still as great as the first time I'd heard it. But truth be told, not a lot is known about this artist, and with but the one cut to go off of, it's high time to find out what's in store for this lavishly luscious lad's music and what's on deck for him next.
Shall we delve into the brain-pickings of one, Alex Aikiu? Yes, yes we shall.
SB: Describe The Aikiu. I know it's your last name, but if you had to classify "aikiu" as a noun, or a genre of music, what would the definition of it be?
AA: The Aikiu is a phantasmagoria and imaginary entity. It represents also the people working on my project. By adding "the" to Aikiu, I wanted to be quirky, almost kitsch (Like "The Great Gatsby")
SB: Talk about your earliest influences in the musical world. Did you grow up playing instruments, listening to mom and dad's old records, or what sparked the notion that "hey I think I need to be making music."
AA: I've discovered music at the Conservatoire, where I've learned the singing and the piano. At that time studying Chopin, Mozart, Schubert....my first influences. Later, I've discovered pop music with my elder sister. We were sharing the same room, the walls were covered with posters of Madonna, The Cure, AHA, Kim Wilde... Every night she made me learn and sing a new song from one of her idol, otherwise she wouldn't let me sleep. It's at that moment, that I've started to imagine, melodies and music. Prince, Michael Jackson have inspired me a lot.
SB: With all but a debut single and handful of remixes for I Can't Sleep, a good deal of buzz has started to flow throughout blogs and online publications. What's your response to the good dose of praise that you've been given for the material already out there, and how do you follow that up?
AA: I'm very happy but also surprised, because I didn't have much expectation. With my label we just wanted to release a song [in a] fairly low profile manner, unpretentious and without pressure. I'm not taking care of critics, at least for the moment I'm concentrating on finishing the album and the release of the next single, The Red Kiss.
SB: It's been said that there's a certain sense of hedonism in your music. Agree or disagree...and why?
AA: Yes, I wanted to transcribe through Just Can't Sleep a cultural and musical period where people were in search of fun and joy (70s, early 80's). I have an obsession for this period, whether musically or moviewise (Scorsese, De Palma...)
SB: What happens next for The Aikiu? More writing, recording, performing, etc...
AA: We are currently finishing the album, which will be more pop. There will be a tour starting in November with dates in New York, London, Paris, Barcelona, Lisbon... and the release of my next single, due in mid-November on the Kitsuné label.
SB: Alright, quick questions. Pick one of the options...and go!
SB: David Bowie or Giorgio Moroder
AA: David Bowie
SB: Basquiat or Warhol
SB: Steak or Shrimp
SB: NYC or Paris
SB: Computer or TV
SB: 8-Bit or Vocoder
SB: ABBA or Adriano Celentano
SB: Lady Gaga or Coco Chanel
AA: Coco Chanel
SB: Spring or Fall
SB: High Fives or Thumbs Up
AA: Thumbs Up
SB: Radio or Record Player
AA: Record Player