Photo Credit: Claire Cali
Born and raised in France, Los Angeles-based Noé is the sweet girl next door who also happens to have a lot to say. Although Noé is incredibly humble when discussing her musical journey, her soaring talent is truly undeniable and uncontainable. Channeling sleepless nights and clouded thoughts, Noé is finally unveiling her highly-anticipated debut EP, ibynoé.
The six-track collection opens with "Color," which is an intense telling of Noé's powerful vocals in its purest form. "Rabbit Hole" captivates listeners with just one listen as Noé experiments with an eclectic array of instrumentals. The astonishing "i cheated on u" features a sultry soundscape that sounds like it was organically crafted with just Noé's gorgeous voice and a trusty acoustic guitar.
Picking up the pace is "Puzzles," an upbeat track that sees Noé reflecting on her pattern of falling for guys who are hard to get and turning away the ones who show her any interest. With an otherworldly piano opening alongside Noé's French pronunciation,"La Fève" is sung entirely in Noé's native tongue. And finally, ibynoé closes with "Pity Party," a lighthearted tune that takes a jab at Noé's evident tendency to be overdramatic.
Photo Credit: Andrea Czarnota
On ibynoé, Noé exclusively shared with us,
"Putting out these songs makes me feel so proud, but also a little bittersweet. I've worked so much on this EP. It took so many thoughts, overthoughts, sleepless nights, crying, love, anxiety, and more. This EP was basically my baby and now it feels like it's off to college. I spent such a long time with these songs at the forefront of my brain, that it's a little weird having them out into the real world, and having to start focusing on new songs - although I am also really excited for that new chapter!"
Ones To Watch has your first listen of ibynoé below:
To celebrate Noé's stunning debut EP, we recently chatted with the lovely songstress about her musical roots, her appreciation for DIY works, and of course, ibynoé.
OTW: What first sparked your interest in music as a child?
Noé: I used to watch The Wiggles a lot, so they might have sparked something in me! But on a serious note, I started playing guitar at nine after going through some health issues. They thought music might help with recovery and give me a means of escape, and it did! Wrote my first song soon after and now I'm here. So crazy.
OTW: Your fusion of alternative R&B and pop is so refreshing. How did you decide this is what you wanted your sound to be?
Noé: I don't think I decided that that would be my sound. My sound definitely came once I stopped trying to decide what it should be. Once I just started doing music I liked without wondering which box I would be put in. I'm so glad I ended up with something you find refreshing!
Photo Credit: Susanne Berry
OTW: How has your French heritage shaped your music?
Noé: French being my first language, I think I approach English in a different way. It leads to different melodies and weird lyrics because I'll find myself translating from French sometimes. Also the "classics" of French music are basically poets. Words are the driving force, which isn't necessarily the case in English. So when I write for myself, I usually let the words guide the melody and the song itself.
OTW: If you could describe your new EP in five words, what would they be?
Noé: A whole lot of me.
OTW: How is "Rabbit Hole" a Frankenstein of a song?
Noé: Haha, I said that because of the vocals. All the vox are first takes of me improvising in the mic in the studio. If you heard them one by one, they would probably sound really off. But somehow together it worked well. I was supposed to re-record everything, but I got demo fever and fell in love with the original so we never changed it. If you listen to the chorus, I was actually recording and improvising reading some words I wrote. I landed on a melody I liked so I tried to re-sing it right away but couldn't remember it perfectly. That whole take is now the chorus!
Photo Credit: Claire Cali
OTW: "Puzzles" is such a playful tune with lively instrumentals, but what exactly is this song about?
Noé: It's definitely about someone specific who is (I think?) super oblivious to the fact that this song is about him. He wanted to be more than friends and was very open about his feelings, and I got overwhelmed. I tend to want those who don't want me back, and I lose interest as soon as they do. Really bad habit that I'm slowly breaking!
OTW: You made your own visualizer for "La Fève" with the Eiffel Tower in the background. What inspired this webcam approach?
Noé: I love DIY stuff. I feel like it shows a lot about someone's personality. Even on my Instagram, it makes me uncomfortable when I post too many "photographer" photos. It's a little too perfect. I don't want people to lose sight of the act that I'm just a girl making music I love. There isn't a crazy team behind me telling me who to be. I didn't have any music video planned for "La Fève," and literally two days before the release I decided to Amazon Prime some crowns and act silly in front of Photo Booth. And I love that Eiffel Tower backdrop; it's so stereotypical, I just had to use it!
OTW: If you could perform anywhere in the world, where would you pick?
Noé: I've been feeling a little homesick lately, so I'm gonna pick Cassis in the South of France. It's a little town super close to my heart. Might even be my favorite place on Earth. It's 20 minutes away from my hometown, Aix en Provence, so we'd go there most weekends during summer. Sometimes they put on shows by the lighthouse, and I've always wanted to perform there! It's truly beautiful; Google "les Calanques de Cassis!"
OTW: Who are your Ones To Watch?
Noé: Mafalda - one of my closest friends, but I'd be a fan of her music even if she wasn't. Her EP is coming out so so soon and I truly can't wait! Matt Rose - played the Troubadour with him once and he blew me away. Such an amazing songwriter/performer. Chappell Roan - saw her perform a few songs at Winston House and I've been hooked ever since. Her voice is crazy.
Photo Credit: Andrea Czarnota