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Hejira

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Hejira last won the day on January 15

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  1. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE FOR NOISEY IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. Recently, IN RETROGRADE was featured in “PUSSY IS POWER”, a feminist anthem by the iconic and rebellious Britney Spears. The duo states that the release of the video is mentally preparing them for the upcoming “TRAICIONERA” video, which is said to feature “gore, violence, and themes of overturning the government and sexual liberation.” FKA twigs has also revealed that she was sexually assaulted, hence she is reclaiming her power as a black female. I: Hello, recently you spoke up about the media and their depictions of females as well as biases after the release of the PUSSY IS POWER video. What do you think the media can do about handling these disparities and biases? S: By acknowledging the fact that there is some bias in the first place. I feel as if people subconsciously have a vendetta against strong and resilient women in the workplace and in almost every sector (i.e. STEM, business, etc.) and by acknowledging that we need strong support by people of higher power. For instance, we need to believe that women are objectified heavily and it is very commonplace within our society. Over the past couple of years, I have realized how conservative the media can be and that’s possibly why a lot of our actions are misconstrued. T: This is the reason why we need to have these discussions in the first place because of our common it is for these biases to occur. I know many women that have been sexually assaulted, discriminated against, and more. We need to make sure that when women are brave enough to speak up, we have to listen and not take their word for granted. That’s exactly why women are afraid to speak up sometimes because depending on the circumstances advocating for your rights—and sometimes dignity—can lead to the opposite result. I: What do you mean by that? S: It is argued that once women make “allegations” towards a man of higher power we do it for attention. That is not the case. We are vilified by the justice system and more. I remember one time my friend spoke up about being uncomfortable about something that a male did in the workplace. Instead of having actions taken seriously, she received comments by other coworkers that were along the lines of “oh, get away from her because she’s a bitch” which obviously alienated her. T: The notion that women destroy the career of men after speaking up is untrue. The most followed man on Instagram is also a man who sexually assaulted a female. The most respected man in the industry is also the man who most likely took advantage of female workers in their field. I: Is that also a theme mentioned in your music? T: Oh, of course. Online, I’ve seen discussions about P. Diddy’s statement about everyone having the “same 24 hours”. However, what he failed to acknowledge is the wrongdoings he committed towards younger and more vulnerable artists such as Kelis. That brings me to the point that all billionaires have gotten to the place that they are at because of exploitative tendencies. Point blank. S: We glorify individuals who do not care about young artists, the lower class, and more because of tropes that we see ourselves in. That should not be the case because that makes you an accomplice.
  2. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE FOR BBC NEWS IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. Recently, IN RETROGRADE was featured in “PUSSY IS POWER”, a feminist anthem by the iconic and rebellious Britney Spears. The duo states that the release of the video is mentally preparing them for the upcoming “TRAICIONERA” video, which is said to feature “gore, violence, and themes of overturning the government and sexual liberation.” FKA twigs has also revealed that she was sexually assaulted, hence she is reclaiming her power as a black female. I: Good morning! I noticed that TRAICIONERA is not available on Encore. Why is that the case? S: TRAICIONERA will be available on Encore next week. The reason why we didn’t want to have the song on Encore for the first few weeks of its release is because we wanted to test the waters and see the public’s reception of the song first. T: Yeah. In order to compensate for TRAICIONERA not being on streaming services we will release an exclusive vinyl as well on our site. I: How do you feel about streaming platforms as a whole? T: Ideally, upcoming artists would prefer their audience to buy their music. We have seen artists advocate for artists that barely have a platform, hence I am grateful for that. S: There are two different perspectives to look at the rise of streaming in the music industry. On one hand, your music becomes more accessible to other audiences. However, it’s a detriment to indie artists financially. T: Despite getting paid little for publishing their work, hopeful young artists have to make their music available on streaming services in order to reach an audience and get heard. Today, it’s incredibly easy for hopeful musicians to get their foot in the door as unsigned artists by using third-party distributors, or label service companies, to make their work available across all streaming platforms. I’m just glad that Sony Music is here to guide us in every step of the way. I: Will we see more songs similar to TRAICIONERA in the album? S: Somewhat. There are some lingering Latin influences embedded throughout the album, however there’s a lot of lush and almost ambient production featured in the record as well. T: Definitely. It’s the most “political” and jarring record that we have done thus far. We have been recently working in the studio and I am excited to share what we have been doing with you all sometime in the future.
  3. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE FOR NME IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. Recently, IN RETROGRADE was featured in “PUSSY IS POWER”, a feminist anthem by the iconic and rebellious Britney Spears. The duo states that the release of the video is mentally preparing them for the upcoming “TRAICIONERA” video, which is said to feature “gore, violence, and themes of overturning the government and sexual liberation.” FKA twigs has also revealed that she was sexually assaulted, hence she is reclaiming her power as a black female. I: Hello, in TRAICIONERA there is an underlying message about climate change and environmental degradation. Please tell us about that. T: Sure. To start off, I would like to mention Vanessa Nakate, a young black activist, because she is involved in advocating for finding solutions to our current climate change crisis. Climate change is a future-truth; what humans are doing now will be realized in twenty to thirty years' time. Hence, the youth are the ones that are leading discussions about climate change in the first place. I: Do you think you will be catering towards younger audiences with your upcoming music? S: No. Our visuals will be very provocative. However, we are definitely working on music that is more commercial in the sense that it’s more accessible and relatable. T: We wrote about our past relationships and the lessons we have learned as a result of heartbreak. S: I am just really excited to finally be releasing a full body of work. I: Are there any artists that have influenced your sound? What are you guys going for with this upcoming project? T: I am influenced by any rebellious female in the music industry. This is why some songs have a more “metal” or “drone” influence such as Swans, Godspeed You Black Emperor!, Nick Cave, Arvo Part, and even female counterparts in metal Of course, we are also influenced by neo-soul artists as well as hip-hop groups such as The Pharcyde and A Tribe Called Quest. S: I was also influenced by my background in Houston and there is also some influence that derived from Tahliah’s dance background. That includes house music and more. I: Speaking of influence, TRAICIONERA has some prominent Spanish influences as well. Please tell us about that. S: We love bossa nova and Latin American culture as well. T: I am of Spanish descent too. We are just excited to be sharing different cultures and trying to have a larger global outreach with our music. S: We are inspired by ethnomusicology because where certain sounds derive from fascinates us immensely.
  4. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE ON REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHER IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. Recently, IN RETROGRADE was featured in “PUSSY IS POWER”, a feminist anthem by the iconic and rebellious Britney Spears. The duo states that the release of the video is mentally preparing them for the upcoming “TRAICIONERA” video, which is said to feature “gore, violence, and themes of overturning the government and sexual liberation.” I: After the release of the PUSSY IS POWER music video, many news outlets have criticized the various themes that were depicted. How do you respond to that? S: Well, The Weekly Standard completely misconstrued everything that was portrayed in the video. This is not unbeknownst to me as I know how the media can be. I have been constantly looking at media articles about the song’s release and there’s truly a narrative that they want to portray about us and our various standpoints. Even our intentions are scrutinized. T: The video is something that we are incredibly proud of. Criticism is warranted, however I do believe that the reception the video has gotten thus far is unfair. I: As per “The Weekly Standard”, PUSSY IS POWER is about critiquing the judicial system. Is that true? S: Not at all. Beyoncé, who was also featured in the video, was referring to misogyny and how it is implemented in our system. For example, people of higher power have the ability to silence women altogether. We are advocating against that thematically. There are various ways in which misogyny, racism, and more are institutionalized and embedded in our society. I: Can you give us an example? T: Mass incarceration. A rationale for mass incarceration in the United States is that custodial sanctions for parole and probation violators are effective disciplines. Prisons do not reduce recidivism and may potentially have a criminogenic effect. Amidst overall rising incarceration rates, former prisoners returning to custody for parole violations represents an inordinate increase in prison admissions. Astoundingly, crime rates do not explain the rise of mass incarceration. The characteristic inequalities produced by the American prison influx are discrete, cumulative, and intergenerational, and often enduring, sustained over lifetimes and passed through families. Hence, the vast racial disparities in the risk of experiencing incarceration may lead to spillover effects of incarceration for relatives. This could have implications not only among communities but it also contributes to structural violence. Beyond structural and institutional intersections contributing to the risk and consequences of punishment for minorities are intersections that effectively marginalize the significance of their vulnerability. Incarceration creates a host of collateral consequences that include restricted employment prospects, housing instability, family disruption, stigma, and disenfranchisement. S: Social and criminal justice policies such as the War on Drugs, the deinstitutionalization of those diagnosed with mental illnesses, and punitive sentencing policies such as three-strikes laws—which mandates life imprisonment for third offenses of minor felonies—and mandatory minimum sentences undoubtedly ignited mass incarceration and allowed it to endure. Although bipartisan support has altered towards more lenient punishments and other prison alternatives, William Barr, Donald Trump’s nominee for attorney general, has indicated that our current criminal justice system should be propagated by the same ideals that have disproportionately affected Black women. I: How do you respond to Ted Cruz criticizing the video? S: It is appalling and repulsive. He’s exactly the man that we want to uncomfortable though.Racism is a system of governance as well and are almost inextricable. On abortion, Cruz has called the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision legalizing the procedure a "dark anniversary". With his actions regarding Planned Parenthood and more, he truly epitomizes what it means to police a woman’s body. T: That’s why I appreciate Shakira for enlightening her audience on the various actions that Ted Cruz has done in the past. There needs to be an open discourse about what we mention in the PUSSY IS POWER video in the media. Ted Cruz, we would love to have a discussion with you. I: Why do you believe policing the female body is a prevalent topic in your music thus far? T: Thank you so much for asking that. I think it’s because it’s very common for that to occur. With our music, we always depict themes of female empowerment and more. We are always told what to wear and when racism was at its peak black women were dehumanized and used as products for medical examinations by racist individuals in the STEM sector. In the digital age, racism has interspersed and now has medicinal, technological, and social implications. This correlates with the question because we talk about Black women first and foremost. S: In the song, a line of mine states: Sterilize and police our body with Norplant and Depo-Provera Providers often steer young black women towards Norplant and Depo-Provera without making available other methods like condoms, which are controlled by the user. Without education about all methods available, a woman cannot make an informed "choice" about which contraceptive form best fits with her lifestyle and state of health. The "choice" of using Norplant or Depo-Provera is sometimes made under pressure, making it not a choice at all, but coercion. We included that line because it opens discussions about reproductive health for Black women in particular. The traditional understanding of reproductive freedom has had to accommodate practices that blatantly deny Black women control over critical decisions about their bodies Highlighting the dimensions of contemporary debates such as welfare reform, the safety of Norplant, public funding of abortion, and the morality of new reproductive technologies is multi-faceted. As both biological and social reproducers, it is only natural that Black mothers would be a key focus of racist ideology. White childbearing is generally thought to be a beneficial activity. The childbearing of Black women though? It is seen as a type of degeneracy. T: Black childbearing and more is frowned upon because people know of the disenfranchisement. From the moment they set foot in this country as slaves, Black women have fallen outside the American ideal of womanhood. Britney Spears and all of the women featured in the video are redefining what womanhood means to us. I: What do you have to say to the media that has talked about the video thus far? S: I would have to say that you shouldn’t twist our words. For example, Beyoncé tweeted about the “system” which referred to systematic oppression. We weren’t mocking the judicial system at all whatsoever.
  5. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE ON LATE NIGHT WITH STEPHEN COLBERT IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. Recently, IN RETROGRADE was featured in “PUSSY IS POWER”, a feminist anthem by the iconic and rebellious Britney Spears. The duo states that the release of the video is mentally preparing them for the upcoming “TRAICIONERA” video, which is said to feature “gore, violence, and themes of overturning the government and sexual liberation.” I: You guys have recently been filming the music video for TRAICIONERA. Is that correct? S: Yes it is! In fact, we are planning on creating three music videos: a vertical video for encore, the actual music video, and an exclusive film that will premiere on The New York Times. I: What can you tell us about the video(s)? T: We don’t want to give anything away, however based on the reception to Britney’s “PUSSY IS POWER” I suggest that people should mentally prepare themselves. [laughs] S: True. The main video features a lot of violence and radical themes that I do not want to reveal yet. However, we have taken a more abstract approach with the other videos. In fact, The Cock Destroyers will be the star for the vertical video. It was really fun to interact with them because they are such comical characters. I: The video features lots of themes—most importantly it is a feminist anthem. What can you tell us about your involvement in the video? S: Well, we wrote a verse with lyrics that are quite comical yet serious. Although the line isn’t featured in the final product, my favorite line is “These coochie lips fat so I call em’ Priyanka Chopra” because it’s amusing. [laughs] T: Oh, and don’t forget the “This pussy ain’t for free / you have to pay for shipping and handling (Period)” line because we are high-maintenance girls. S: Overall, it was a really fun experience and I am so excited that the video is finally out. There are a lot of subtleties in what Britney is currently doing and what I believe is that she’ll be more appreciated in years to come than how she is currently perceived now. We look back on what Madonna did with Erotica in 1992 and believe that she’s a strong woman. That she changed the entire pop landscape. We think about Michael Jackson and his video for “They Don't Care About Us”. In 2042, we’ll look back on this video and appreciate how emblematic this video truly is. What I also have to say is that the video is both nuanced and straightforward simultaneously, so I believe that the media is currently fabricating depictions of what we are trying to convey in the video. I: What do you think is different about the message the PUSSY IS POWER video is trying to get across? T: This is a very interesting question. Let’s start off by comparing Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears. They are both great artists in their own right, however they are known to profit off of controversy. With Lindsay, she is a manipulator, a fraud, and uses her disenfranchisement to promote her skincare line and music. Britney Spears? She has more balls than anyone in the industry right now. As we stated before, misogyny is a transnational issue. She uses her platform to become the face of the movement in sectors such as the music industry. Hence, she’s on the right side of history. She isn’t flashing her vagina and nipples for the sake of getting people to talk about her specifically. It’s always metaphorical and nuanced. S: This is why I can’t wait to use our own platforms to share our stories with themes that are very important to us. I would say that eventually we will be extending on the initiatives pioneered by Britney, however through her influence I would say that we are continuing the discussions we are currently having with [PUSSY IS POWER] and talking about other radical ideas. I: What inspires you to have these discourses in the first place? T: We acknowledge that racism, sexism, heterosexism, classism, ableism, and other forms of interpersonal and institutionalized forms of inequality exist in society. This does not mean we all agree on the causes, consequences, or solutions for these forms of inequality. S: There are so many instances in which Black women are the most disenfranchised community. For instance, the black woman’s experience in America provides arguably the most overwhelming evidence of the persistent and ongoing drag from gender and race discrimination on the economic fate of workers and families. We are vilified, repulsed, and silenced by even our own community. What inspires me to initiate these discussions is that by being silent, I slowly become the perpetrator. T: [PUSSY IS POWER] may be just another pop track for some, however it means so much to me because—well...I was sexually assaulted by a record executive before I signed into Sony Music. I’m sorry...I’m getting a little emotional right now. I: It’s ok. Here you go. [hands Twigs a tissue] T: Thank you. [cries] Being involved in the process of this song is not only a coping mechanism. It’s a way of reclaiming my power because embracing my femininity and strength, I am able to persevere through the trials and tribulations that life may bring towards you. I: There truly is an underlying theme between TRAICIONERA and PUSSY IS POWER. What would you say is the message that you are trying to get across with your music? S: Black women are always silenced. For example, In spite of their performance of highly valuable roles in the civil rights movement, southern Black women—such as Septima Poinsette Clark, McCree Harris, Shirley Sherrod, Diane Nash, Johnnie Carr, Thelma Glass, Georgia Gilmore, and JoAnn Robinson—remain a category of invisible, unsung heroes and leaders. Growing up in Houston with my sister [Beyoncé Knowles] has changed my outlook on the various political movements that are prevalent today. I have always been more resilient than ever before. What we are trying to convey with both songs is that women are stronger by being united. We are stronger in a pact. No woman can advocate for their rights alone. As the victims of oppression and misogyny, we have to realize that keeping a blind eye to these issues is essentially a wrongdoing. T: And we are also saying that the general public is accustomed to the misogyny and even racism because they are the building blocks of our society as indicated by the general public’s reception of the video. Let’s not turn a blind eye on what we are demonstrating through using our platform as a method of activism.
  6. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE FOR CONSEQUENCE OF SOUND IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. “If you listen to my music, you know who I’m talking to, what I’m talking about, and exactly what my message is,” says Solange Knowles. Recently, IN RETROGRADE have been gearing up for their upcoming performances with Ariana Grande’s “The Liability Tour”. Although IN RETROGRADE has only released “TRAICIONERA”, they are currently preparing an “exhilarating experience” with their upcoming shows. As the opening act, IN RETROGRADE is scheduled to express their ferociousness even further. FKA twigs is an anomaly. Her idea of mastery involves ownership of her craft, but is mindfully tempered with the knowledge that she is one of many voices. twigs appears to understand that mainstream culture pins her as artist zero for voguing (and baby hairs) and she counters cultural myopia by continually naming her teachers and collaborators: Wet Wipez, Benjamin Milan, Derek Prodigy. There are various reiterations and dance styles throughout her set and she seemingly enjoys the intense rigor. “I’m ready to work my ass off,” she says. “This is something that I’m used to.” Last night, the rising duo was featured in “Pussy is Power”, a bombastic double-video by Britney Spears. Currently, all of the female artists involved are being scrutinized by the far-right for “showing our institutions in a bad light” as per Senator Mike Braun. I: What’s the importance of “Un violador en tu camino” to you guys? S: “Un violador en tu camino” has been a strong, transgressive song. Thanks to this, the world in one way has opened its eyes and realized that today, in the twenty-first-century, violence against women continues to occur. It seems crazy, but many people, from the comfort of their homes, do not know about the hatred resulting in femicides still happening in the world. And this song, thanks to Las Tesis (Chilean feminist group and creators of the song), has sent the message across the globe. T: I don’t think the song wants to create a battle between the sexes. We may have a solely women performance, chanting, “the oppressive State is a male rapist.” I think that this also applies to every person on this planet where wars, politics, and the State don’t respect life. Just like a rapist does not respect anything. S: That’s something that people are forgetting. We don’t want to increase the divide between men and women. When you want to become blinded by the actions of the oppressor, you become the oppressor as well. I: Do you think that notion is ignored by the far-right and the general public altogether? T: I wouldn’t say that it’s blissful ignorance. It has been clear that misogyny is rampant in our society, however many choose to find explanations for the disparities women face in the workplace and more. S: What people seem to forget is that neutrality oppresses more people than being on the right side of history. Nobody that has their rights taken away will appreciate you turning a blind eye on what is going on. That’s the importance of what Britney Spears is currently doing. I: What I noticed is that there is a significant correlation between “PUSSY IS POWER” and “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía). Please tell us about that. S: There’s this line in my verse that states: Silently eroding bodies through transnational creed Degradation that is slowly damaging society This correlated significantly with the themes in the “Pussy is Power” video because misogyny is a transnational issue. In El Salvador, women are tried for suffering miscarriages. In India, violence against women, including high-profile gang rapes and murders, have brought protesters to the streets. In Mexico, over the last seven years, the legal system has added a new offense to the books: femicide, the killing of a woman for gender-specific reasons. T: Upon the release of the video, I thought about how I either have to compromise the livelihood of women worldwide or maintain a clean slate by the general public. Nothing about the video is disingenuous. I stand by what we did and I am proud of the finalized product.
  7. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE ON LATE NIGHT WITH SETH MEYERS IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. “If you listen to my music, you know who I’m talking to, what I’m talking about, and exactly what my message is,” says Solange Knowles. Recently, IN RETROGRADE have been gearing up for their upcoming performances with Ariana Grande’s “The Liability Tour”. Although IN RETROGRADE has only released “TRAICIONERA”, they are currently preparing an “exhilarating experience” with their upcoming shows. As the opening act, IN RETROGRADE is scheduled to express their ferociousness even further. In their Vulture Magazine article, IN RETROGRADE has stated that they are inspired by Rihanna’s 2018 record entitled Mariposa Negra and current hip-hop artists such as Playboi Carti and Tyler, the Creator. Today, they were on Late Night with Seth Meyers to promote the song. I: Hello, it is such a pleasure to have you guys here! S: Thank you so much. I am grateful for you allowing us to be on the show in the first place. [laughs] T: Definitely. I: You guys are the opening act to Ariana Grande’s “Liability Tour”! Congratulations. When Ariana offered you the opportunity, how did you guys feel? T: Ecstatic and amazed at how life comes at you fast with these incredible opportunities. Ariana Grande is a powerhouse performer and one of, if not the best vocalist in the music industry currently. I would love to hear her do more R&B music for sure. She reminds me of Aaliyah don’t you think? S: She does! Ariana Grande is someone that everybody should look up to. A couple weeks ago, I was in awe of the immense vocal range that she has. She hit these extremely high notes that interspersed around the venue and it captivated me so much. The fact that I am working with someone that I look up to dearly is amazing. I am rooting for her at the Grammys this year of course. I: Before you guys debuted, you donated over $1.1 million to the Equality Now and Futures Without Violence (FSW) organizations in support of Lindsay Lohan. Is that correct? S: Yes. May God bless her. I am not the religious type, however I do pray for her sometimes. I always pray for people’s sanity because I believe that’s the right thing to do. T: Her music is great though. I am appreciative of the immense work she has done to create advocacy for domestic violence because it’s a topic that needs to be talked about more often in the media. This is also why I admire other artists such as Shawn Mendes who documents such serious topics in their music. I: This brings a topic about separating the art from the artist. Do you think that’s possible? T: That’s such a difficult question. Nobody is proposing some kind of fascistic law barring the consumption of artwork made by alleged deviants. There is an alarming social penalty that should be taken seriously by anyone in the public eye, however. S: With music you are heavily personal with the topics discussed in your lyrics. The connection and relationship I have with my musical output is intangible. Nobody can replicate the perspective I share with the music that I create. Hence, some art can not be separated from the artist because it is the center of my own being. I: For your opening gigs with Ariana Grande, you guys have stated that it will showcase the duality of the group. Can you elaborate on that? S: There are a lot of aspects of the show that draw so much from Louisiana culture, specifically the horn sounds. I think that there was a certain sense of triumph and glory and radiance and also regality that I wanted to convey with the horn sounds. And so much of that comes from me living in New Orleans and Louisiana and just brass bands and those brass sounds being sort of just the backdrop of the city. I am very inspired by neo-soul and the immense bands HBCUs are known for. T: And I believe I showcase my classical ability as a performer and dancer with my set. As a performer, we constantly have the urge to perform better and I have pushed myself to do so with this show. I created wonderful tracks specifically for the upcoming shows. I’m so excited.
  8. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE FOR POWER 105.1 IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. Recently, IN RETROGRADE have been gearing up for their upcoming performances with Ariana Grande’s “The Liability Tour”. Although IN RETROGRADE has only released “TRAICIONERA”, they are currently preparing an “exhilarating experience” with their upcoming shows. As the opening act, IN RETROGRADE is scheduled to develop interpersonal connections with the audiences through poignant and mellifluous themes in heart-wrenching ballads as well as creating an eclectic atmosphere through eccentric productions and soundscapes. “We are currently working with Es Devlin to fully express the duality of [IN RETROGRADE” twigs states. With their performances, they are theatrical and extremely refined. They called Power 105.1 to talk about the upcoming performances until an interviewer decided to be rude towards their upcoming collaborator. I: Welcome IN RETROGRADE! We love TRAICIONERA. What a nice track! S and T: Thank you! I: What do you think makes you different from other artists? S: I would say that we are extremely detail-oriented and we love to reference extensively as well as understand the environment we surround ourselves in. For example, if I am in New York I like to listen to artists that grew up in the city I am visiting. T: The idea of culture always inspires us. Hence, we are diligent—especially because we are in the public eye. I: Well...speaking of diligence, it appears that you are collaborating with good ol’ slutty Britney Spears. Why did you want to collaborate with such a whore during your big break? S: Excuse me? What’s wrong with you? Britney Spears is our friend and the fact that you decided to tarnish her name and vilify her in front of a live broadcast is downright disgusting. Do you have manners? I: Look man, it’s a joke. Don’t get too upset now. Let’s talk about TRAICIONE— T: No. To begin, I used to be an avid listener of Power 105.1 because you guys often play amazing songs and I enjoy the banter between you and other guests. Have you even listened to [TRAICIONERA]? The premise of the song is that it is alright for women—especially black women—to advocate for themselves and to ignore misogyny and microagressions that only reinforces such discrimination systematically. Another theme of the song is that women need to be in solidarity. I hope you realize the mistake you have made. I sincerely apologize to your mother for raising a man that disrespects women like that. Thank you. They proceed to leave the radio station gracefully.
  9. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE ON HOT 97 IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. “Although it is quite odd for me to believe in astrology, I truly believe that it dictates certain aspects of my life.” They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. I: Hello, congratulations on the release of TRAICIONERA! S: Thank you. It’s a blessing for all of our hard work to be paid off. T: I started crying when I first saw that it debuted on the charts. Numbers and commercial success isn’t what we were aiming for, however when you have overcome such adversity and success suddenly comes your way it truly changes your outlook on everything. I’m so proud of us. I: Speaking of which, when will you be performing with ROSALÍA? T: I’m not sure if I can…well the shows will be starting very soon so I think we should. [laughs] For the past couple of weeks, we have been rehearsing extensively because we will be the opening act for Ariana Grande’s upcoming tour! We will be performing with ROSALÍA very soon. I can’t wait! S: She’s bringing such dexterity and passion with the performance. We are planning something great. I: Can’t wait! In fact, I already bought tickets to the opening show. Will you be performing even more new material throughout the show? S: We are planning to, however we are not planning on premiering new music from our upcoming project as of yet. The record is very personal for us and I truly don’t think we’ll be releasing another single— T: Solange, remember the song we recorded last night? S: Oh! Actually let me refrain from saying that. [laughs] S: There will be some material of course without spoiling what is to come. I: Speaking of which, today Britney Spears released a trailer for her video that includes “Pussy is Power”. What was the recording process like? T: Britney Spears is an amazing artist and is the embodiment of the woman we are referring to in [TRAICIONERA]. She’s resilient, powerful, and rebellious. I would say that our verse in the song is very tongue-in-cheek and we actually created our own original song based on the recurring themes in both [Devotion] and “Pussy is Power”. S: She’s great. There was a lot of back and forth in the process and we love working with people like that. Britney Spears is simply great and I will always look up to her. She’s everything you want her to be. I: That’s very lovely to hear! You recently posted a picture of what appears to be [FKA twigs] on top of a gargantuan disco ball? What was that for? S: We are shooting our own music video. I’m not sure when the video will be released, however it is a very exciting process. There are a lot of people that had creative input into the finalized product and I am happy with how it turned out. T: Solange and I directed the video alongside others whom I can’t name yet. With our upcoming music, I hope to create a cinematic experience because I am a film enthusiast. This is such an exhilarating process and I am loving every single moment of it.
  10. Hejira

    IN RETROGRADE ON KTU 103.5 IN RETROGRADE is a duo that coalesces a variety of mediums and sonic palettes to create a sound and an image that is uniquely theirs. With “TRAICIONERA” (featuring Rosalía), they disseminate various political ideologies whilst reclaiming what it means to advocate for justice in the age of the #MeToo movement. Their intentions are to acknowledge environmental degradation, prevent the sanctification of U.S. imperialism, highlight the disparities between communities of color in various sectors, and to ultimately document their experiences with music, film, performance art and television. Solange Knowles was an astrophysicist at the Johnson Space Center. She states that the name of their duo alongside Tahliah Debrett Barnett—who also goes by FKA twigs—derives from their mutual relationship of cosmology and various fields in science. “What the title of [IN RETROGRADE] represents is the start of a new chapter” Solange states. “I am a firm believer in astrology” twigs says affirmatively. “Although it is quite odd for me to believe in astrology, I truly believe that it dictates certain aspects of my life.” They are currently working on their debut album that will be set to release this Spring. I: Good afternoon! We are here with IN RETROGRADE. How are you guys? S and T: We are great! T: It’s a pleasure to be here. I: You guys are working on an upcoming project. Is that correct? S: Yes, slowly but surely. We are still trying to figure out the logistics of everything as well as the song that we are going to go for. T: Definitely. We love a plethora of different genres. I’m just glad to be in the writing process at the moment. We have written a few songs here and there and I would love to write for different artists in the future as well. I: Fantastic! Did you see how Lindsay Lohan, Shakira, Shawn Mendes, and Maluma have included TRAICIONERA in their Encore playlists? T: Oh really? That’s amazing! I love their recent projects—especially Shawn’s latest music video. S: It’s great to be feeling so welcomed in the music industry. I am appreciative of having a great support system because it can get a bit overwhelming at first. I: Since you guys love different genres, is there a song that completely juxtaposes TRAICIONERA? S: Well, we wrote this song called “WANDERER” for an upcoming project by Ariana Grande shortly after we finished recording TRAICIONERA. It’s a really nice and poignant ballad about enjoying every single moment with your partner because you can feel that an imminent change is approaching. T: Let me sing a little bit of the song for you: Oh, but these beams of lights Will disappear at any given moment in time Desolate without something to emulate God’s greatest design I: That’s beautiful! T: Thank you [laughs]. I: Congratulations on releasing TRAICIONERA! Will there be a music video that will be released anytime soon? S: Yes. We haven’t started filming the music video yet, however we have a storyboard ready for it and I can’t wait to start filming. T: ROSALÍA is still in Spain so we will be waiting for her to come back in order to start shooting the video.
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