Act out your fantasies with ‘Fantasy Love’, the brand new EP from Vancouver group Blonde Diamond, formerly known as Youngblood. It’s dreamy, dark pop at its best with fleshed out, forward-thinking electronica and hints of the 60s and 80s.
The 6 track EP is filled with euphorically catchy melodies and hard driven beats. The music will suck you on to the dancefloor but is also a must for a late night drive. There is a vulnerability in frontwoman Alexis Young’s vocals, as well as a, don’t mess with me attitude. As each song ramps up and the EP comes to an end you are left wanting more.
Alexis Young explains, “The idea of the title Fantasy Love came from an Andy Warhol quote,” She continues, “Fantasy love is much better than reality love. Never doing it is very exciting. The most exciting attractions are between two opposites that never meet. I have always been drawn to the tension of the imagination, and the incredible worlds that it creates within your mind. More often than not, something that you’ve built up in your mind is so terribly disappointing once you’ve had the chance to experience it in the real world. This EP pushes the boundaries of the situations I’ve created in my mind as a form of escapism, and gave me the outlet I needed to process how I was feeling without having to ruin everything in the real world.”
Neon Music caught up with Alexis and the Blonde Diamond band to find out more about them and their new music release.
Your music is quite genre-blending. How would you describe your sound to new listeners?
I’ve found that saying we’re simultaneously dreamy and vicious is a pretty good way of expressing that the music has a lot of ethereal and atmospheric textures, but has an underlying level of bite, especially live. I also like to classify it as “what the 60s thought the future would sound like.”
Why the name Blonde Diamond?
We used to go by Youngblood, so when we were thinking about making the transition to a new name, we felt the connection to Blonde Diamond was a cool red thread to honour the old name. It also feels glam-y and suits the more upbeat vibe of the new songs.
Tell me about your new EP ‘Fantasy Love’
‘Fantasy Love’ was written during a solo trip to LA where I just needed to get out of Vancouver and process this onslaught of conflicting romantic feelings that I had about an impossible scenario.
I have always been drawn to the tension of the imagination, and the incredible worlds that it creates within your mind. More often than not, something that you’ve built up in your brain can be so terribly disappointing once you experience it in the real world. So it’s really about me letting go of needing to explore these feelings in real life and instead keeping them in the world of song.
It’s the space, where fantasy and reality intersect, is where I feel really interested in, and prefer to exist. It has a little bit of everything that I need.
What’s your favourite song on the EP and why?
It’s obviously quite hard to choose between your children, but I’d have to say ‘Better When You’re Close’ and ‘Bend to Break’ are the closest to me, lyrically.
How do you know when a song / EP is finished? Is there the temptation to make changes or add more tracks?
Nothing is ever really ever “complete”, you just have to bite the bullet and put it out there. Hahaha. I guess you know when it’s ready when you can’t stop listening to it and you’re excited to share with people.
What message/s do you wish to portray as Blonde Diamond and through your music?
I think for me, I’m really curious about the relationships between human beings and the connections that we either have with each other or don’t. It’s really compelling to me to try to understand what makes some people drawn to each other. So digging into that is something I’d like to explore more. I also think as a performer, I like to portray confidence and self-acceptance, kind of as a way for me to come to terms with those things myself.
Who or what would you say is influencing your music right now?
I’m pretty obsessed with Kali Uchis right now. She’s amazing. And the latest MGMT record has been inspiring some new music as of late.
Your Instagram photos are very stylish and glamorous – is fashion and style something you enjoy and how much time do you spend on social media per day?
I love fashion as a form of personal expression, and also as a way to deliver a message. I think it’s super important it’s just so much fun to really become an exaggerated version of yourself. As far as how much time I spend on social media, I try to keep it limited since I think it can become really unhealthy to spend too much time on there as it’s a highlight reel, and it’s easy to start comparing yourself to other people’s successes, without any acknowledgment of what they had to go through to get there.
Favourite venues/cities/festivals to perform and why?
We have had the fortune of performing in some truly incredible places around the world in the past year and a bit. Some of my favourite places were Amsterdam, Hamburg, and Pune (India). In each place, we felt really connected to the audience and felt like they really went above and beyond just attending a show. It felt like we made an actual impact there, and we weren’t just another band coming through and running through the motions.
Top 5 tracks of 2018?
Little Dark Age – MGMT
Miami – Kali Uchis
Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino – Arctic Monkeys
Afterglow – I M U R
No More Tears Left to Cry – Ariana Grande (GUILTY PLEASURE)
What can fans expect from your forthcoming tour?
We’ll be incorporating some new tracks which are not on this EP, excited to be trying out more new stuff!
What’s next for Blonde Diamond?
We’re going on tour with Dear Rouge across Western Canada at the end of October and beginning of November, as well as a new single coming out at the beginning of 2019, and we plan on touring more in support of ‘Fantasy Love’!
Blonde Diamond will hit the road again in Canada starting on October 30th in support of Dear Rouge. See all upcoming dates.