Just the other week, POP Montreal hit the Montreal scene with notable force. With acts like Timber Timbre, Philémon Cimon, The Unicorns, Diamond Bones, and CTZNSHP, the five day bender was full of stellar gigs.
One artist in particular really stood out, and that was Arbutus Records signee Lydia Ainsworth. Having just revealed her debut effort Right From Real on September 30, Ainsworth has quickly established her ability to create solemn soundscapes that transcend our previous experiences with orchestral, cinematic music.
During our week in Montreal, EARMILK had the opportunity to have a short but sweet conversation with the young musician. While picking her brain about her most recent endeavours, Ainsworth radiated an air of modesty and genuineness that made us understand just exactly why her music sounds as beautiful as it does.
1. Who is Lydia Ainsworth musically? Non-musically?
Lydia Ainsworth musically is the same as Lydia Ainsworth non-musically but the definition of myself (like anyone else in this world) is fluid and constantly evolving.
2. You recently played Arbutus Records' POP Montreal showcase, along with a few other shows throughout the festival. How was that for you?
POP Montreal was very special and a lot of fun. For the show at La Sala Rosa my friend and very talented designer Alex Hercule built a plexiglass sculpture that featured his graceful snake 'Baguette'. He also made some beautiful projections. I was also very generously loaned a beautiful gown by Renata Morales who is one of my favorite designers ever and happens to be Montreal-based. It was an exciting and fun show to play because of those additions. The next day I performed at the Arbutus headquarters and while it was stripped down visually it was also just as special. I was joined by string players and a drummer. I consider that space a home away from home now, it was special to perform there.
3. Right From Real has just dropped a few days ago now. Congrats, it must be a bit surreal! Having a bit of distance from the album, how do you feel about it? Nervous? Excited? Bit of both?
Now that it is out I am excited to work on the next album. Writing and recording is the best part. Putting the album out into the world and sharing with others is a really wonderful experience but I draw the most pleasure from creating so that is what I am excited for at the moment.
4. Do you find that your studies in film scoring influences your music? How so?
Writing for film taught me how to record and produce. Also, mood is very important to me and manipulating a listener's mood fascinates me. I think that my studies in film scoring influences my music today in the sense that whatever I write I always want to usher the listener into a unique sound world for each song as if the song is a film of its own.
5. Picture your fans. Who are they, and what do they look for in music that you think you fulfill?
I think my fans are people who share an ancient belonging with me. They are people who can step out of the false light and into the more candlelit world of the soul. That kind of Rembrandt light that reveals complexities through the subtle use of shadow.