Debuting in 2015, CHINAH, a riveting electro-pop trio from Copenhagen, Denmark looks destined for success. Boasting an awesome, uniquely driven sound and a promising resume, the future for CHINAH is bright.
We exchanged a couple emails with Fine Glindvad (singer/songwriter), Simon Kjær (guitarist) and Simon Andersson (electronic musician) to get a glimpse into their journey to today and what the future holds.
Kyle Warner: First off, how did CHINAH meet?
CHINAH: We met at an art school 5 years ago. Simon K. played in an indie pop band, Simon A. was into experimental electronic glitch music, and Fine had her own folk/pop project as singer/songwriter. We became good friends and were fascinated by each other musically, but would never have thought of playing in a band together at that time. CHINAH was created some years later when we all lived nearby each other and were hanging out all the time. Sometimes we would come up with some pop-hooks and we really got into that way of working where a song is written simultaneously as the production is considered. We still work that way.
KW: I absolutely love your music. That indie, electro-pop sound is so cool, how did you guys create it?
C: Thank you so much, that means a lot. That’s hard to answer because we often think of music in terms of contrast and dynamics or how it makes you feel rather than striving for a particular genre. That we all have different backgrounds in music is of course one of the main reasons why we’re able to make the music we do. We have three different perceptions of everything and we consider this one of our greatest strengths. We disagree quite a lot and sometimes it can be a struggle, but in some weird way the end product is something we can all agree on. Maybe our perception of pop music also plays a role in terms of creating our sound. We want our music to be challenging, but also sonically pleasing. We try to challenge the common pop structure, but at the same time we never fear what’s catchy, simple or maybe corny. That balance is really important. Often it’s about being able to feel the demands of the song.
KW: So you guys are from Copenhagen, Denmark. I actually had the opportunity to go to Roskilde Festival last Summer, what was the experience like playing such a massive festival?
C: Playing Roskilde is always a dream for a Danish artist. It was really something special and kind of emotional for us. We have been at that festival every year since we were young teenagers and seen some of our best concerts there, so it felt kind of unreal to suddenly be the one looking out at the audience.
KW: Do you feel that playing such a huge gig like that has changed the trajectory of Chinah?
C: Playing big stages can feel like entering a new level of your career in some way, which can feel a bit overwhelming, but most of all it feels like a huge experience. That said, we try as best we can to forget those thoughts while we are in the creative process and keep on making music the same way we have always done.
KW: When I visited Copenhagen, I found it to be a very relaxed and mellow culture, did growing up there influence your sound and style of music at all?
C: Well, we didn’t really grow up in central Copenhagen, but we’ve been living here for the last many years. Of course your approach to music is always influenced by the place and the emotions from the place you grew up, but we don’t think we are the right people to judge in which way we are influenced by it. Maybe it’s the dark winters and cold weather that makes Scandinavian music feel so mellow?
KW: You guys are huge in Europe, have you seen your popularity grow in the US as well? Is that something you guys put an emphasis on with so many licensing opportunities out here?
C: When we released our first songs we got a lot of feedback from the US and it actually took some time before we received the same amount of feedback from our own home country. In 2017 we are going to play our first shows in the US and we are pretty excited about that. A couple of months ago Simon K. Was in a cafe in Paris and got recognized by a guy from Boston, that was pretty sweet.
KW: Is there a reason you write songs in English?
C: Aurally, it just fits our sound better than Danish. And then it probably has something to do with the artists and bands that inspire us.
KW: When I listen to your music I think to myself, “In 5 years, I’m going to be able to tell my friends I interviewed CHINAH”. Your music is that good, do you feel like a major breakthrough is coming?
C: Haha that’s great. Well, we really try to focus on our music instead of thinking too much of the future. But we definitely feel good vibes 🙂
KW: You guys just dropped “Can’t Remember How It Feels” a month or so ago, which is gaining a ton of momentum, what does the future hold for Chinah?
C: At the moment we are putting all of our energy into finishing our next EP and we are releasing the next track quite soon. Then we will see what the future brings.
KW: P.S. When I went to Copenhagen we found the restaurants Kebabistan and Smagsloget which were unbelievable! Please tell me you know them!
C: Yesss, we know them and love them!