After gaining recognition as the winner of Australia's 'Unearthed High Competition,' 16-year-old KIAN is taking airwaves by storm with his luscious alternative stylings that are drizzled with a smattering of hip hop, soul, and R&B. At just two years old, KIAN found himself living a musician's lifestyle on the road with his father, who created music in Australia's various indigenous communities. The appreciation for all types of creative styles KIAN developed in his travels inspired much of his passion for the mature songwriting we hear from him today.
Ahead of his incredible new EP BLISS (set for release May 10), KIAN is blessing us with "Summer Insecurity," a self-reflective tune about mental insecurities and our conspicuous tendency to second guess ourselves. Layered with vibrant bass lines and downtempo keys, "Summer Insecurity" sees KIAN analyzing the metaphorical walls we've built around ourselves to keep everyone at a distance through the sincerest of lyrics. The accompanying live studio video is accessorized with bright daisies placed around the studio and visuals of flowers are projected onto the walls as KIAN and company deliver a stunning performance of "Summer Insecurity."
On "Summer Insecurity," KIAN exclusively shared with us,
"It's one of my favorite tracks, musically, on the 'BLISS' EP. It's a play on being insecure and being scared of opening up to people and showing one's true self to others. People constantly battle with their own mental insecurities and second guessing themselves, so I wanted to address this. The second half of the song breaks down and explores a different musical scape, and for me, this is the person breaking free of their own chains and breaking down their self-conscious barriers."
Let KIAN shatter your insecurities with his captivating vocals below:
In anticipation of KIAN's upcoming releases, we spoke with the alternative singer-songwriter about "Summer Insecurity," his dream collaboration, and his phenomenal EP BLISS.
OTW: Rumor has it you were first introduced to music by your father when you were just two years old. Can you discuss music's impact on your early life?
KIAN: Actually, both my parents influenced me musically from when I was young. My dad toured around remote indigenous communities and toured with really incredibly inspiring artists. It was great to experience the culture and sounds of the first nations people and see their creative process, which was really inspiring. My mom also bought me my first guitar, which was a nice pivotal moment.
OTW: How would you describe your music to people who have never heard it before?
KIAN: I think my sound at the moment is alt pop, with hop hop, soul, and R&B influences. But I'm sure it'll be forever evolving as my music library opens up.
OTW: You wrote your breakout single "Waiting" when you were just 14 years old. How has your creative process changed since then?
KIAN: I'm just starting to enjoy being pushed out of my comfort zone. I just went on a writing trip to Bali to work with producers from tons of different backgrounds and it's really expanded the way that I approach tracks.
OTW: What inspired you to write "Summer Insecurity?"
KIAN: It comes from a place of anxiety and being afraid of judgment.
OTW: Do you have a favorite track off of BLISS?
KIAN: It's probably "Summer Insecurity" for the reasons above and the arrangement of it came off really nicely. The breakdown is one of my favorite parts for the whole EP.
OTW: What do you hope listeners will take away from your new EP?
KIAN: I want people to relate, feel, and understand the meanings and messages within my songs and to be able to connect with the music on a personal level.
OTW: If you could collaborate with anyone in the music industry, who would you pick?
KIAN: Earl Sweatshirt is someone I've always looked up to and would like to work with.
OTW: Who are your Ones To Watch?