Seeing Things For The First Time: POiSON ANNA Interviewed

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It would be a mistake to categorise POiSON ANNA – championing the genre-less, she grapples with a sonic whirlwind of self-discovery and emotional release. Born and raised in London, 23-year old Chloe Anna is led by a deep spirituality, a self-belief that has paved the way from leaving her job to developing an otherworldly sound that navigates through the anger and frustrations she feels towards her society.

Capturing a strong sense of intent throughout her early stages, the British-Czech musician recalls her pub job as “demoralising of my character… I was encouraging people to get silly drunk and I’m cleaning up their mess, it’s not elevating me. I quit, I had no care what my plan was I just knew I was going to go straight to the studio and start making this music.” Indeed, within that same week, Chloe landed herself a spot on A$AP Rocky’s third studio album, ‘Testing’ – Rocky reached out despite her not having officially released any music at this point. “I’ve debated whether I would talk about it but I do think it’s very important to allow others to know that it was as simple and crazy as that!”

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There is a transcendent quality to POiSON ANNA, a concept that was birthed “once I started to really realise that I was singing away a lot of my pain that I would internalise about myself and my life.” This year’s debut mixtape ‘EXCELSiA’ is an emotional journey of recognition, understanding and moving forwards which translates across the pace and tone of the project. At first glance, one instantly notices the presence of the lowercase ‘i’ amongst the track-list, and it is subtle creative imprints as such that illustrate the artist’s conscious approach. “The ‘i’ is the representation of you, ‘i’… I’m a big believer in the Rastafarian attributes and ‘I and I’ is a huge part of that so I wanted to make it lowercase so you always can associate with the ‘i,’ and the ‘i’ being yourself.”

Working closely alongside friend and producer MOBBS, tracks like ‘GOASH’ are infused with agitation, the fractured bass and disorientating vocals serve as “a metaphor of being an army veteran, where you’re literally told to hack it and hack it again and it’s all very militant.” On the other hand, tracks like ‘Runt’ that appear further along the mixtape, take a much slower and atmospheric approach, giving a sense of peace and overcoming.

Throughout the project, there is a subversive nature to POiSON ANNA’s wispy delivery that remains distant yet intimate. Embodying the soul of the songstress, Chloe notes “if you want to create a world for people then you can’t be the leader of it you have to be a part of it!” She adds: “I want to exist like an instrument within my work, so, I become a part of the piece rather than above it.”

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It is this same sentiment that lead Chloe to direct her own music video for single ‘FAiNT’, calling friends and family to platform a love for dance and spiritual energy without necessarily starring in the visuals herself. What becomes clear is that ‘EXCELSiA’ is its own artistic masterpiece, presenting a raw snapshot of Chloe’s inner world, working instinctively at every moment. “We don’t like to alter the moment, the moment is what’s key. It doesn’t have to be the best delivery, it doesn’t have to be the most perfect, tweaked take it needs to be the moment.”

The year ahead offers Chloe to push for the limitless and an extensive, matured learning of the self. “We’re only at the beginning of the POiSON ANNA journey but I think once more stuff starts to come out, we’ll understand the journey of POiSON a little bit better. Right now she’s in her destructive, seeing everything for the first time stage…”

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Words: Ana Lamond

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