Olicía is the band of two prominent vocalists and multi-instrumentalists Fama M’Boup and Anna-Lucia Rupp from Berlin, Germany, and Copenhagen, Denmark: two voices, two loop stations and a variety of acoustic and electronic instruments that combine traces of Soul, Jazz, folk, electronic and global pop in something that is completely yours.
Their debut album “Liquid Lines” will arrive on October 1 after two Eps in 2018 and 2019 and countless concerts in recent years. It was recorded with Miles Deiaco at Monoton Studio, Berlin, and will be released in late summer 2021. Guests on «Liquid Lines» include experimental French harpist Laura Perrudin, drummer Demian Kappenstein (ÄTNA) and Wencke Wollny (Karl die Große).
«Liquid Lines» will take two different forms. There will be a regular 10-track digital album on streaming services, while the physical album will be a 20-track / two-disc affair – each Lp or Cd will function as a completely different version of the album with regards to lyrics, instrumentation, grooves, collaboration partners, or even language. It’s quite a unique listening experience – immersing yourself in the dreamlike variations of these songs as the two women emphasize, obscure, or replace certain elements, and many times drift into something entirely new and unexpected. This is how Fama and Anna-Lucia would like this album to be understood, as a meditation on the liquid lines of demarcation of what constitutes a song. And, in a larger scheme, the infinite possibilities that constitute art and life itself. The «liquid lines» of retouching and amending, bending and adjusting, of thinking, not thinking, and rethinking the same thing.
We have had the pleasure of speaking with them, and this has been the result.
Hi there ! Where can we find you right now? How did you start your day?
FamaI started with a coffee in bed before writing lyrics for a new Olicíaadventure and answering E-Mails.
AnnaI had a slow and rainy morning in Copenhagen with a hot shower, a big cup of coffee and some office work on the couch. After that I decided to have pancakes for lunch, so my day got a lot brighter then!
When did the idea of starting a project start to take shape? Has it always been something you wanted to do?
FamaWe met in 2014 but didn’t start Olicía until more than three years later… Since then, it is our main project, and it shapes as we go. We had some visions for Olicía and we are developing new ones based on our experiences together.
AnnaWe started out by working with this looper together. It was the starting point of creating music together after having checked out the gear and the technical aspects of our setup. The magic really happened first as soon as we figured out how to be creative and in the moment and therefore rising above the gear we had in front of us. Using the looper as an instrument and being able to say what we want to say and express ourselves without technical limitations really made us fly!
How would you define the sound of your latest work? What is the concept behind?
FamaWe are about to release our debut album “Liquid Lines” on Ocotber 1st. It’s going to be a double version album – so 10 original songs in two different versions, two different energies and moods. We were thinking about how music is received these days and thought: we have to make people buy records again. So you will get 10 songs online but the 20 only on vinyl and CD.AnnaThe sound of our latest work has become much more electronic and way deeper in expression and color. We started to use analog synthesizers not long ago and it shows in our music that we explored the mixture of acoustic and electronic sounds being coexistent and it opens up a whole other world for us. Still our songs have one core element: the voice in all its shapes, layers and coloring.
What artists are you interested in these days?
FamaPeople like Jordan Rakei, Laura Mvula or Hiatus Kaiyote blow my mind. They are trained in their profession and also able to go with the flow. You can see that they work hard on their music but also leave space for life. An all time favorite is still Jazz and I love Cécile McLorin Salvant, who is a pretty young vocalist, that is modern, but carries the traditional sound with her in a very good way!AnnaFor me being in Copenhagen and being surrounded by beautiful musicians and songwriters really opened up a lot of inspiration. I’ve been listen to Snowpoet, Björk, This Is The Kit, Thom Yorke and Agnes Obel and I try to connect it with my way of creating music and to find parallel routes that still inspire me to take another turn and be brave at all times.
How do you manage to combine such disparate genres? How do you manage to give them unity and harmony? What do they have in common for you?
AnnaHonestly the genre or the sound world that we create doesn’t really feel disparate to us. We don’t really think about combining genres, but really just let everything that is inside of us flow naturally into our music without holding back or thinking too much about it. We are musicians that listen to a lot of different music – Pop, Jazz, Rock, Soul, even classical music sometimes. What results is a very natural way of saying: This is who I am, in many shapes and colors.FamaYeah, it is nothing we plan – some songs need other sounds then others. When in the studio we oftentimes say things like “I hear something else there” or “I miss a specific synths sound at that part” and that is what we need in this moment. And especially for a second version of a song, we sometimes started with a plan and the song came out totally different in the end, because our idea wasn’t as strong as the impulses we had when actually working on the song.
How would you define your sound?
FamaWe call our style electronic handmade loop jazz and it is very vocal based. Our music is flowy, earthy, organic and sometimes rhythmically unsquared…
AnnaFor me the core of it all is the story we tell. Our music and our sound world paints a picture of what we are saying through lyrics. We always have our focus on expressing what we feel or experience in life and our sound is the tool to express and paint a picture. The sound can be electronic, it can be acoustic, it can she scattered or floating, sometimes it takes you deep down in dark worlds, sometimes it is fluffy and soft. This is what and who we are!
Can you tell us something about your current or future projects?
FamaWe are about to release our album, touring with Swiss Singer Songwriter Sophie Hunger and planning our next steps, which include some film music, a collaboration with dancers and giving us time for the next big dream to work on…
AnnaAlso we have just recently founded a label which is called o-cetera and we are planning to release some music that we create with different projects of ours.