KUČKA is Laura Jane Lowther, a producer, and singer from Australia; starting as an upstart musician with bands in Perth, Western Australia's art scene, and eventually releasing independent music, which won a raft of Australian music awards. Now though, KUČKA has finally released a debut album titled Wrestling. Even though she is a self-proclaimed global citizen, prior to the album release, she had been based in Los Angeles, where she spent time during the COVID-19 pandemic, working on music and preparing mentally for the impending release of the aforementioned debut album, and found time to quickly chat with EARMILK.
Having previously worked with the likes of electronic heavyweights Flume earlier on in KUČKA's career, where the artist took numerous elements from time spent exploring the worlds of R&B, jazz, new age and electro influences and mixed those influences together to incorporate them into a 12-track album, aka an audible diary. "I’m feeling pretty optimistic this year, I’m excited for the summer," she expresses to EARMILK at the top of our chat about the debut album. "I’ve been in LA for the whole pandemic and it’s been quite isolating, but things are starting to open up again and it’s starting to feel really buzzy."
Wrestling is a very personal project for her, in fact, this debut album was a project that left her feeling a little bit terrified on how the overall story would be perceived by listeners, albeit feeling accomplished with the final product, she felt bouts of fear for its sheer vulnerability within, "like people can see through my brain and into my inner thoughts," she shares.
In Wrestling, you're going to get KUČKA in a raw and emotional state, with 12 songs that showcase how she felt over the past couple of years, "It’s a bunch of songs that I wrote over a three year period when my life was quite unsettled and contradictory," she continues in our chat, "so there are [sic] a mixture of angsty tracks (Real), love songs (No Good For Me) and ambient self soothing chillers (Joyride)."
Going into detail on the writing process of the debut album, her main question when initially working on this project was: "‘Is this the truth?’" With that pondering question, she went on a proverbial journey to find the answer within her own production process, which was essentially her spending copious amount of hours in the studio alone, experimenting with sounds, going down proverbial internet rabbit holes and typing many fragmented ideas into text edit files on a computer. Additionally, on this album, she did a few collaborative sessions, working with Frank Ocean collaborator Vegyn, Nosaj Thing, and from day one, Flume. Although, that collaborative process was kind of rare for her, especially to work with others in person on this project.
Prior to the album release, KUČKA gave fans a taste of the debut album with the releases of "Real," "Ascension," and "No Good For Me," which were covered on EARMILK – subsequently, she slowly, but confidently, unveiled what would be a big abstract diary entry of influences that made up her 12-track album. In saying that, reminiscing back on the album's creation, she shares her immediate recommendation for listeners is the last track, "Patience." "I wrote it when I was having health issues that were affecting my sleep and I was feeling so exhausted," she states. "I feel like it’s really helpful to listen to if you need to chill out and rid your mind of anxious thoughts."
This is the type of album that she hopes at least one lyric, in some way, in any of the songs, would really hit home for the person listening. "I always love when I listen to music and I have a line that runs through my head later and really makes me think," she states at the end of our interview.