Album Release: Nilüfer Yanya – Miss Universe
Nilüfer Yanya, London’s 23 year-old “effortlessly smooth new soul star” has announced her hotly-anticipated debut full length album Miss Universe. The record will be released on 22 March via ATO Records/PIAS and launches with the unveiling of Nilüfer’s new single and video ‘In Your Head’.
The stunning video for ‘In Your Head’ was filmed in the Las Vegas desert by longtime creative collaborator ENERGYFORCE and mirrors the track’s thrilling choruses and frantic energy. Speaking about ‘In Your Head’, Nilüfer said, “Sometimes my mind plays tricks on me and I get trapped. There’s the things I need disguised as things I think I only want, things I think I’m choosing out of choice not necessity. Sometimes this only becomes clear in retrospect, or maybe it will never become clear. Some people may call that being paranoid. I think that’s what I wrote the song about , but what’s interesting to me, and what I think I was trying to get at, is the illusion of freedom.”
Miss Universe was largely recorded in the same remote Penzance studio she used to jam in with her uncle Joe – a former musician himself – and features co-productions with both her former school guitar teacher The Invisible’s Dave Okumu and her live bandmates Jazzi Bobbi and Luke Bower, as well as producers John Congleton, Oli Barton-Wood, Will Archer and M.T. Hadley.
Following her inclusion in the BBC’s influential Sound Of poll in 2018, Nilüfer is the latest cover star of Loud And Quiet magazine and was recently tipped as an Artist to Watch in 2019 by The Guardian, The Independent, Dork and The 405. The foundations are firmly laid for Nilüfer Yanya’s debut album – and her confirmation as a rare and utterly original British songwriting talent.
Nilüfer is ready to release her debut album, Miss Universe. Though she recorded much of it in the same remote Cornwall studio she used to jam in as a much younger person, it is bigger and more ambitious than anything she has done before. ‘Angels’, with its muted, harmonic riffs, channels ideas “of paranoid thoughts and anxiety” – a theme that runs through the album, not least in its conceptual spoken word interludes which emanate from a fictional health management company WWAY HEALTH. “You sign up, and you pay a fee,” explains Nilüfer of the automated messages, which are littered through the album and are narrated by the titular Miss Universe. “They sort out all of your dietary requirements, and then they move onto medication, and then maybe you can get a better organ or something… and then suddenly it starts to get a bit weird. You’re giving them more of you and to what end?”
Miss Universe track listing
1. WWAY HEALTH
2. In Your Head
7. Baby Blu
9. Heat Rises
11. “Sparkle” GOD HELP ME
12. Safety Net
14. Monsters Under The Bed
15. The Unordained
16. Give Up Function
17. Heavyweight Champion of the Year
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